SRAM has released wireless Blips for eTap AXS shifting that can be mounted to any point on a bike. The Bluetooth-enabled devices will cost £90 / $100 / €90 a pair and will work with any 12-speed road or mountain bike eTap AXS groupset. They go on sale in April 2022.
Besides being simpler to install than SRAM’s current wired Blips, the wireless remotes are also more adjustable.
Mounting options for the existing wired version of the Blips are limited by wire length. Moreover, the wires need to be routed through handlebars and under handlebar tape.
The lack of wires and hoses with the new Blips makes installation possible in multiple positions. Therefore, disabled riders, including hand cyclists, are also catered for. For example, SRAM says one rider who tested the products fitted them inside the brake handle and hood to suit their individual needs.
The new wireless Blips have no battery cover or charging dock in order to minimise bulk. Consequently, they are not rechargeable, but SRAM claims they will last an average rider nearly 10 years. Their lifespan is estimated to drop to four years for a TT racer or triathlete, and seven and a half years for a pro rider.
Initially, you need to pair the wireless Blips with an eTap AXS shifter, the VukaShift aero bars or a Blip Box.
But once paired with the derailleur(s), you can shift with the wireless Blips without any of those, or other shifters switched on, or connected to the bike.
In contrast to the wired Blips and shift paddles, you can’t hold the wireless Blips for multiple shifts. Instead, you press once, they click then perform a single shift.
SRAM says this function preserves battery life. But it renders them incompatible with the RockShox Reverb AXS dropper post as the button that operates it needs to be held down.
SRAM claims an upcoming firmware update will permit the Blips to work with the dropper but it is yet to confirm if multiple shifts will become possible with this.