Nike's New GPS App for iPod
9/10/2010 by: John Oram
Nike is moving from "just apparel" business model into the technology marketplace. Primarily a designer, developer, and marketer of athletic footwear, apparel, and accessories, Nike announced a new app for the Apple iPod and iPhone targeted at the fitness runners out there. The Nike+GPS App, at $2 from the online Apple App store, maps and tracks running routes, with the results of each session available for uploading to the Nikeplus website, Facebook, and Twitter.
The Nike+GPS App uses the built-in accelerometer and GPS location finding of an iPhone or an iPod touch player. The software provides active real-time pace-based coaching and location tracking. The previous Nike + iPod Sport Kit was $30 and required installing a small device in a special pocket in your Nike shoes. That meant if you had older running shoes or wore football shoes, the older design ruled you out. The Sports Kit version's interface and control scheme is limited to a small window-and-track wheel setup you got on the old-fashioned iPod.
In August, Adidas announced a free miCoach app for the iPhone, iPod Touch, and Blackberry. miCoach features sports-specific training programs that have been designed to coach sports and fitness enthusiasts, amateurs, and professionals.
Nike+GPS is an independent application which is not influenced by Apple's iOS updates. This will save a lot of frustration when Apple delivers their next change. Nike+GPS will work while you're running on either a treadmill or on a street. It relies on the built-in accelerometer that can act as a pedometer. If you're using it with an iPhone, you can build your own street route using the GPS feature.
The Settings window also has an option for signing in to Nikeplus.com. The site works in conjunction with Nike+ devices, and it can be used for tracking your performance and goals over a longer span of time, accessing specially designed coaching programs, and communicating with other runners to challenge each other or share favorite routes in your area.
You also can record your profile, including height, gender, and weight ? down to a half a pound for those who hate to admit to 180 and want to say 179 and a half. The data lets you figure your calorie burn rate on a specific run. Simply pick your favorite music or your coach's instructions which will help you get ready for your next min-marathon.
With competitors already jumping into the market, Nike+GPS will have to enhance their features to keep current.
Nike, Apple, Adidas, Nike+GPS, Nike + iPod Sport Kit, Adidas miCoach, iPhone, iPod, iPod Touch, Blackberry, Apple App store, GPS, accelerometer, pedometer.
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