As technology has evolved so too has its relationship with our fitness. For years fiction has imagined how with the help of technology people could achieve feats of incredible strength and endurance. Without a little help from technology Batman would be just an eccentric costume wearing industrialist, Ironman just a playboy arms dealer and The Six Million Dollar Man just ‘The Man’. Now in the digital age these ideas are one leap closer to reality in the form of fitness tech.
In 2012 the global wearable technology market stood at USD 750.0 million and is expected to reach USD 5.8 billion in 2018. North America is expected to maintain its lead position at 43.0% of the global wearable technology revenue share in 2018 followed by Europe.
The Consumer Electronics Association says the sports and fitness category is a $70 billion annual business in the U.S. alone and ABI predicts the market for mobile fitness apps will grow from $123 million in 2010 to $341 million in 2016.
Encouraging news for both companies in the market as well as consumers who, as recent studies have shown, can improve overall health an fitness through the use of fitness tech.
Misfit Shine is the world’s first all-metal wireless physical activity tracker that tracks steps, cycling and swimming activity. Misfit Shine placed 2nd at CES Last Gadget Standing. The health gadget was an early breakaway favorite on the online vote of the competition (read more).
Mio Alpha is a heart rate monitor designed for performance athletes that provides continuous, accurate heart rate readings in sports watch without the need for a chest strap. Mio Alpha debuted as a finalist for a a TRE-mendous award and won “Product of the Year” at ISPO Munich in 2013.
Digipill, an app for iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch, uses psychoacoustics to unlock the subconscious and alter perception. The app takes commonly desired behavioural changes such as relaxation, confidence, or losing weight, and delivers a powerful audio ‘pill’ designed to help the user address them.
Endomondo is a community based fitness app using GPS to track runs, with an audio coach providing live checkpoint stats whilst also enabling friends to share live words of encouragement, read out live by the digital coach. In 2012 Endomondo teamed up with coca-cola to include a hydration guide.
Fitbit Ultra is a small blue clip on pedometer and wireless transceiver that monitors movements during the day using 3d motion sensor and altimeter technology. The tracker also monitors sleep and using the latest bluetooth technology syncs with theFitbit Aria body scale.
Fitbug Orb is the first button-sized, Bluetooth Smart, wireless Fitbug activity tracker with seven wear options, choice of colours and the ability to track sleep. The Orb benefits from smartphone-friendly technology and allows users to sync their stats on-the-go (read more).
Nike+ FuelBand is a wrist worn sports-tested accelerometer that tracks daily activity right down to each step taken and calorie burned. The band’s LED display lights up from red to green showing progress throughout the day, as well as syncing with the Nike+ app (read more).
Runtastic combines an application platform, hardware device, and an online service which together create a fitness and health ecosystem that can measure any activity data. The running app was nominated for the category of Best Use of Location 2012 in Appsters Awards.
FitOrbit is a subscription based online fitness platform extended to an iPhone app enabling for the direct delivery of personal trainer designed exercise and meal plans. FitOrbit also launched a fitness payment application for ePlate credit card device allowing consumers to earn personal trainer access with purchases.
HapiFork by Jacques Lépine of HapiLabs is an eating utensil that helps you to eat more healthily. Sensors record exactly how quickly you eat and how much. If you are eating too fast the fork then vibrates indicating that you should slow down. The HapiFork also monitors portion size by counting how many ‘fork servings’ you consume.