January 08, 2022

RGT vs Zwift

RGT vs Zwift

At a Glance

RGT and Zwift are the two largest indoor cycling platforms out there. While RGT focuses a lot on realism as well as socialism, the main difference between RGT and Zwift is how big Zwift’s platform is compared to RGT. RGT and Zwift are both incredible choices;for those who don’t mind being alone on the road sometimes, I would go with RGT, but for those who like always having a group near them and having riders to chat with, Zwift is definitely a better option for you. RGT is definitely growing - there are events almost every hour now and it is slowly catching up to Zwift in terms of size. Some of Zwift’s key features/aspects are the incredibly designed worlds, e-racing, and gamification (XP, challenges, in game currency). Some of RGT’s key features are the realism/physics, ability to create public events, price, and Magic Roads. One reason why a lot of riders have switched from Zwift to RGT is because the physics that RGT has is much more realistic than Zwift. Here is a table comparing some indoor training platforms.

zwift


Features/Details (ranked out of 5)

Bkool

Zwift

RGT

Realism

5

2

5

Live rides

3

5

4

Workouts

2

4

4

Data Displayed

5

4

4

Data Accuracy (Speed, Distance, etc)

4

4

4

Number of Courses

5

3

4

Course Design Quality

3

5

4

Gamification

2

5

4

Bugs/issues

4

3

5

Socialism

3

5

4

Avatar Customization

2

5

4

Cost:Features

5

4

5

Graphics

3

4

3

Device Compatibility

5

4

4

Equipment Compatibility

5

5

5

What type of rider would want it?

Someone who is looking for a reliable training platform that is realistic and gets the job done; Someone who does not really care for the social, live events, and racing aspect of indoor training.

Someone who is looking for a training platform that has a lot of social features, live events, and racing; Someone who does not really care much for realism.

Someone who is looking to both train/race and still have the socialism of Zwift. RGT is not as developed as Zwift, meaning there are not as many riders in the events.

Final Score (total points)

56

62

63

Event Organizing

One of the things that these platforms are both targeting is their social aspects. Zwift offers group rides throughout the day that community organizers arrange. Zwift also has a meetup feature where you can invite up to 100 riders to join your “group ride.” The meetup feature is not great, but it gets the job done. RGT, however, has a much more powerful feature for premium users. Premium users have the ability to create group rides/races whenever they want. There is also an option to have your event automatically published to the official RGT events calendar if you get over 20 riders signed up. This is an extremely powerful feature to the event organizers out there. Zwift is rolling out the clubs feature in the coming months that should be very similar to the RGT feature, but without the capability to add to the public calendar. For now, RGT remains the best for event creation, and is an extremely powerful and useful tool.

 


Getting Started

Getting started with Zwift is very easy - you just create an account, complete the payment process, and then you are ready to ride. However, lots of Zwift users complain that it is a very complicated process, and the UI is very confusing. I would argue that RGT is just as confusing, maybe even more. The big benefit for those on a budget is that RGT offers a free version, and it does not ask for your credit card. RGT pricing is $9.99 with a 14 day free trial for new users. Zwift pricing is $14.99 with a 7 day free trial.

rgt1

Training

Neither of these indoor cycling platforms have very good workout selection and training plans. For plans and workouts that guarantee results, I would recommend checking out Wahoo SYSTM or Trainerroad. In terms of the number of workouts that the platforms offer, I think Zwift definitely has more workouts. In terms of workout quality, RGT is a lot more specific on the purpose of doing the workout and how it helps you improve.


Courses/Routes

Zwift by far has much better designed courses and a lot more selection and variety. RGT offers quite a few routes, but since there are fewer riders on RGT, the roads are pretty empty. The detail that RGT has in their courses is not a lot, while in Zwift there are fun easter eggs hidden throughout the routes, such as the changing weather and moving creatures. One place where RGT really wins over a lot of riders is the ability to upload your own routes to RGT. RGT features the magic road feature that allows riders to upload route files and ride on those routes. So you can bring your favorite route outdoors, indoors. This feature is only available for premium users (paying users). The feature can also be used when creating events, so you can have your ride/race on these custom routes.

zwift2


Customization

In terms of data customization, RGT allows you to turn some things on and off, so you can toggle the chat, rider list, elevation map, and a few others on/off. However, in Zwift you only have the option to turn the HUD on or off. More on the Zwift HUD can be found in this article here. Neither apps have great customization in terms of data, but no apps out there do. In terms of rider customization (changing kits, glasses, wheels, and other things like that), Zwift definitely wins on that. Zwift offers hundreds of frames and wheels that you can purchase with their in-game currency. RGT offers a few frames, helmets, and glasses. They do have a wide variety of kits to choose from. RGT does not make riders earn the equipment, you can use all of the equipment upon sign up, which can either be a pro or con depending on your point of view.

rgtcustom


Ride Feel

Zwift has been working on their pack dynamics/draft for awhile now. RGT from the start has definitely had better physics/pack dynamics. RGT addresses many issues that Zwift users complain about, like cornering, braking, and their overall draft. This is one thing that drives many racers on Zwift to switch to RGT.


Summary

While it may seem like these training platforms are very different, it really comes down to realism or gamification. RGT’s user base may seem smaller, but they are definitely growing and you can see nearly 1000 riders in some RGT events now!