The stationary bike company Flywheel has just served notice to its customers that it’s shutting down its in-home service. On March 27, 2020 the Flywheel At Home service, a subscription based exercise class service where users pay to stream classes remotely, will stop working. According to an email it sent to customers, Flywheel is sending its existing customers directly to rival Peloton.
“We understand your disappointment at this news, but we have partnered with Peloton to provide an exclusive offer for you to enjoy their world class At Home product,” Flywheel’s email to customers said.
Flywheel offered both in-studio and in-home stationary bike classes similar to Peloton. Peloton sued Flywheel for technology theft, claiming Flywheel’s in-home bikes were too similar to Peloton’s. Flywheel settled out of court and, as part of that settlement, it’s pointing people to Peloton who is promising to replace the $2,000 Flywheel bikes with refurbished Pelotons.
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“Flywheel admits that Flywheel’s Fly Anywhere Bike and associated services infringe the Peloton Patents as alleged by Peloton [and] that Flywheel copied elements of the Peloton bike in developing its Fly anywhere bike,” Flywheel Chief Financial Officer Jeffrey Naumowitz said in the settlement. “As such, and as part of the settlement resolving this dispute, Flywheel agrees that within 60 days it will stop infringing Peloton’s patented technology.”
Peloton has reached out to Flywheel’s customer base to provide them with a website to trade in their Flywheel bikes and replace them with Peloton’s for free.
“We have worked with Flywheel to create an exclusive opportunity for them to join the Peloton community by trading in their Flywheel Home Bike for a like-new Peloton Bike at no cost to them,” Peloton told Motherboard in an email. “We look forward to welcoming these new members into the Peloton family."
According to Peloton, the “like-new” bikes are refurbished models. When Peloton delivers these replacement bikes, it’ll also haul away the old Flywheels. Flywheel did not immediately respond to Motherboard’s request for comment on the bike trade in.