Polar's new M450 Bike Computer combines a forward-facing LED light for safety with the standard GPS-and barometer-based features like speed, distance and altitude, plus Bluetooth Smart connectivity for peripherals such as heart-rate straps and power meters.
Polar says it will integrate with Strava by the end of this month, though it's important to note this doesn't mean the M450 will support live segments on the device – as Garmin's higher-end devices can. Rather, it means you can send your activity data over to Strava when you sync with the online service Polar Flow.
The M450 can also be set to generate training programs after a user inputs their training background and current physical condition, then completes Polar's tests.
Most cycling computers use the ANT+ wireless frequency for third-party compatibility with things like heart-rate straps or power meters. Polar uses its own Polar Bluetooth Smart frequency and its own sensors for heart rate, speed and cadence, along with Kéo Power pedal-based power meter Polar co-developed with Look. The M450, like the V650 computer we reviewed recently, has no ANT+ compatibility.
The M450 has a 'Back-to-Start' feature that will guide riders home — or back to the hotel — via GPS.
As with Garmin and its computers, Polar has a website called Polar Flow where uploaded data gives analysis of the training data. The Polar Flow app (for iOS and Android) can be synched wirelessly with Bluetooth Smart.
Polar Flow gives feedback on training load and suggested recovery time, plus weekly, monthly and yearly summaries.
Polar M450 is available in white for US$169 / £118 / €160, and US$199 / £147 / €200 with a Polar H7 heart rate sensor. Australian pricing was TBC at the time of writing.