What is ANT+ and why do I need it for cycling indoors?

The new meters have a little LED that flashes to show battery life and zero-reset confirmation. The biggest improvement though is the massive amplification of the ANT+ and Bluetooth signals, which means no more signal drops
(Image credit: Ben Delaney/Immediate Media)

ANT is an acronym for “Advanced and Adaptive Network Technology,” which is a low-energy wireless protocol meant to collect and transfer sensor data. The first generation on ANT sensors would only work with ANT-enabled sensors and not competitors' products; but the second generation, ANT+, works with many different devices regardless of the manufacturer. ANT+ was developed as a lower power version of ANT, and designed specifically for fitness gadgets such as the best heart rate monitors and best power meters.

ANT+ technology allows devices to talk to each other wirelessly, such as a smart trainer connecting to a virtual training app such as Zwift.

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Zach is a freelance writer, the head of ZNehr Coaching, and an elite-level rider in road, track, and e-racing. He writes about everything cycling-related, from buyer's guides to product reviews and feature articles to power analyses. After earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Exercise Science at Marian University-Indianapolis, Zach discovered a passion for writing that soon turned into a full-fledged career. In between articles, Zach spends his time working with endurance athletes of all abilities and ages at ZNehr Coaching. After entering the sport at age 17, Zach went on to have a wonderful road racing career that included winning the 2017 Collegiate National Time Trial Championships and a 9th place finish at the 2019 US Pro National Time Trial Championships. Nowadays, Zach spends most of his ride time indoors with NeXT eSport.