fitness Stories February 1

An Apple Watch Unity Challenge has just landed, in which Apple invites us to keep moving to celebrate Black History Month. The company first announced it would be happening a couple of weeks ago.

Black History Month can trace its own origins back to 1926, before becoming official in 1976 …

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fitness Stories January 28

SmartGym for iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Apple Watch is out today with a solid update. The latest version brings all-new 3D exercise animations for the entire database, a smart auto-fill feature, a new Apple Watch edit screen, and more. We’ve also got 10 codes for a free year of SmartGym Premium for 9to5Mac readers thanks to developer Matt Abras!

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fitness Stories September 16, 2020

During Apple’s fall event, the company announced Fitness+, a new subscription service with deep integration with Apple Watch that will available later year this on iPhone, iPad, and Apple TV for $9.99/month or $79.99/year.

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fitness Stories March 22, 2019

I started running in 2016 in part to test the newly added GPS feature on the Apple Watch that year. Series 2 hardware was the first to let you accurately track outdoor workout distances with mapped routes without carrying the iPhone, even if cellular wouldn’t come for one more version. The same Apple Watch generation introduced the Nike+ version of the hardware with the Nike Run Club app heavily promoted, so I started tracking runs with NRC…

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fitness Stories July 5, 2016

UnderDesk Treadmill LifeSpan

As someone who’s been involved in IT for the last 15 years, sitting while working comes with the territory. Since transitioning from IT to full-time blogging, it’s just been more of the same.

Shooting video tends to get me out of my chair on most days, but I still find myself sitting for inordinate amounts of time. Having a good exercise routine is crucial, as many of my colleagues will attest to, but even with regular exercise, it can still be fatiguing to sit for most of the working day.

This is why I ended up researching, and ultimately acquired, a standing desk. Standing desks are great as I noted in my full review of the UpDesk Power Up, but after a month or so of regularly standing for portions of my work day, I craved something more.

Enter the Under Desk Treadmill from LifeSpan. It’s a device that helps transition a standing-while-working routine into to a moving-while-working routine. Can an under desk treadmill really allow you to maintain productivity while in motion?

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fitness Stories May 27, 2016

jawbone-up3-teal

Update: Jawbone says that the report is “unequivocally false”. Read the company’s update at its blog

According to a report this evening from Tech Insider, Jawbone, the company once famous for its Bluetooth headsets and more recently known for its Jambox speakers and fitness wearables, has stopped making the UP line of fitness trackers. This includes three devices that the company has reportedly struggled to sell: the UP2, UP3, and UP4. Another report says that a clinical-grade wearable is coming soon…

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fitness Stories May 10, 2016

lab

You might have thought that the health & fitness labs Apple created to help develop the Apple Watch might have been closed once the product had launched, but a piece in Time reports that they are still operating 12 hours a day, six days a week.

I was recently able to visit one of Apple’s labs dedicated to sports and health. For 12 hours a day, six days a week, Apple brings in Apple employees of every shape, condition and ethnicity to do various exercises and monitor them with the most sophisticated medical systems available. Apple has seven full-time nurses in the facility I visited, using medical monitoring equipment that can determine all types of heath related data points.

ABC gave us a look inside one of the labs in the run-up to the launch of the Watch last year, when we learned that they include climate chambers which allow the company to simulate a wide range of different environments, but this latest report does include a new claim …

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fitness Stories April 26, 2016

SteelSeries Apex M800 Desktop

I’ve always been intrigued about the idea of a standing desk, but I’ve never been motivated to actually try one until recently. As someone who sits at a desk and blogs about Mac and iOS for a living, I was particularly interested in seeing what type of benefits such a desk could offer.

Enter the PowerUp from UpDesk, a Nashville-based company that specializes in standing desks. The PowerUp, as its name alludes to, is a motorized standing desk that can lower and raise with the press of a button.

I’ve been testing out the PowerUp for the last few weeks, and have collected some thoughts and observations about the setup. Does it really make a difference in my day to day Mac and iOS blogging workflow? expand full story

fitness Stories February 12, 2016

ASICS will acquire Runkeeper, following Adidas and Under Armor’s example

Following in the footsteps of competitors, Adidas and Under Armor, ASICS will buy fitness app-maker, Runkeeper. The move was announced on Medium by Runkeeper’s founder, Jason Jacobs, and indicates that all fitness apparel companies clearly see the need to embed tracking technology, and/or tie-in apps with their brands.

fitness Stories January 5, 2016

heartrate

Biometric specialist Valencell – whose technology is licensed by iRiver, LG, Sony and others – has filed a lawsuit accusing Apple of using underhand tactics to gain access to its patented technology for use in the Apple Watch.

The company claims that Apple violated three of its patents for improving the accuracy and reliability of heart-rate data when using the photoplethysmography (PPG) approach used in the Apple Watch. But the lawsuit alleges more than just patent infringement, reports AI: it also claims that Apple used deceptive techniques to get access to the technology …

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fitness Stories November 10, 2015

cook

In a wide-ranging interview with the Telegraph, Apple CEO Tim Cook has hinted that the company may launch more health-focused products in future – but will keep those separate from the Apple Watch. The reason, he says, is that the FDA approval needed for full-on health devices would slow down the pace of innovation of the Watch.

Cook hints that Apple may have more plans for the health sphere, in a revelation which will intrigue Wall Street, but he doesn’t want the watch itself to become a regulated, government-licensed health product. “We don’t want to put the watch through the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) process. I wouldn’t mind putting something adjacent to the watch through it, but not the watch, because it would hold us back from innovating too much, the cycles are too long. But you can begin to envision other things that might be adjacent to it — maybe an app, maybe something else.” 

This represents a significant change from expectations …

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fitness Stories November 3, 2015

Fitbit says sales unaffected by Apple Watch as revenues rise 168% year-on-year

Fitbit CEO James Park says that the company’s sales have been unaffected by the Apple Watch, as the company announced Q3 revenue up 168% year-on-year, reports the Guardian.

On a conference call with investors, Park said that the rollout of other smart watches, which often come with a step-tracker similar to Fitbit’s main function, did not have impact on the company’s growth. When asked about Apple’s new watch specifically, he said it had “no material impact”. He added that Apple and Fitbit cater to “two very different segments in the market” in terms of price point and use and that “there’s room for more than one dominant player.”

While there is no current overlap in pricing – Fitbit devices start from just $60 and top out at $250 – the statement may look a little optimistic in years to come. Apple is likely to add functionality to future Watches while maintaining its premium pricing, but it’s not impossible it could follow its iPhone strategy of keeping previous-generation devices on sale at a reduced price when new ones launch.

That could see the two companies competing at least at the $250 level – and in the meantime, there are already discounted Apple Watches out there, from Apple and others.

Via The Verge

fitness Stories October 22, 2015

Runkeeper can now track workouts on Apple Watch without your iPhone

We haven’t seen an awful lot of Apple Watch fitness apps update for watchOS 2 just yet — which lets faster native apps take advantage of sensors like the heart rate tracker — but Runkeeper is out with its iOS 9 and watchOS 2 update today.

Because Runkeeper 6.2 lets Apple Watch users track heart rate with the wearable’s built-in sensor, the app now lets you track runs with it directly on the watch without having to bring your iPhone. You’ll still need the iPhone if you want to track location as Apple Watch doesn’t have built-in GPS, but with a pair of Bluetooth earbuds and Runkeeper 6.2 you can track runs and listen to music using just Apple Watch.

Previously run tracking without iPhone required using Apple’s Workouts app. The updated Runkeeper for iOS 9 and watchOS 2 includes a few other changes as well including an interesting music analytics feature for workouts:

fitness Stories September 30, 2015

9to5Toys Last Call: Anker Dual-USB Solar Charger $40, WD 4TB NAS $160, Cards Against Humanity 20% off, more

Keep up with the best gear and deals on the web by signing up for the 9to5Toys Newsletter. Also, be sure to check us out on: TwitterRSS FeedFacebookGoogle+ and Safari push notifications.

Today’s can’t miss deals:

Last Call Updates:

TiVo makes the DVR sexy with 4K content, AirPlay and one-click commercial skipping

Anker 14W Dual-USB Port Solar Charger: $40 shipped (Reg. $50+)

WD My Cloud 4TB Personal Cloud Storage NAS $160 shipped (Orig. $220)

Amazon Gold Box – Cards Against Humanity 20% off: Starter Kit ($20) and Expansion Packs ($8)

Get a no-contract iPhone 6s from Boost Mobile for just $450 shipped (Orig. $649)

Apple iPad Air 2 Wi-Fi: 16GB $380 shipped (Reg. $499), 64GB $490 shipped (Reg. $599)

More new gear from today:

LG 34-inch 21:9 UltraWide LED IPS Monitor: $620 shipped (Reg. $780+)

More deals still alive:

USB Power: Anker 15,600mAh Battery Pack $24 (Reg. $30), Lumsing Wall Charger + 3-ft. MFi Lightning Cable $10more

Four magazine subs for $16 (or less): Wired, Dwell, ESPN, GQ, Rolling Stone, Men’s Fitness, and many more

New products & more:

Bose’s latest connected speaker lowers the entry price into the SoundTouch family

Keurig’s new KOLD brewer lets you make Coca-Cola at home but it’s going to cost you

fitness Stories August 5, 2015

Adidas buys popular fitness app maker Runtastic for € 220 million

Runtastic, developers of several popular fitness iOS apps, today announced it has been acquired by Adidas for € 220 million. The move, according to a press release from both companies, will help Adidas bolster its efforts in offering connected products and its vision of “the convergence of sport, digital and data in an always connected and always on-demand world.” Or in other words, Adidas now has a strong software component with a large user base to integrate with its digitally enabled sports products including balls, wrist devices, apparel, and shoes.

Adidas already offers several of its own mobile apps that cross over into Runtastic’s territory, such as the miCoach train & run app and the Adidas Go app that integrates with Spotify to offer music matched to a user’s running pace. Runtastic, however, has around 20 mobile apps related to fitness and health and claims around 140 million downloads and 70 million registered users. The company also offers a few hardware products, including a scale and fitness tracking devices, that compliment its fitness apps that integrate with other third-party hardware including Apple Watch. 

It’s unclear what Adidas has planned for the company and its apps, but Runtastic will be joining the Adidas teams and building new experiences as part of the brand going forward. What exactly that means for the Runtastic brand and integration with Adidas products remains to be seen.

fitness Stories August 4, 2015

Jay Blahnik, one of the lead directors behind the health and fitness features in iOS 8 and Apple Watch, is this month continuing his tour around the globe discussing his thoughts on health and fitness. Tomorrow, August 5th, Blahnik will host a question and answer session at the North Michigan Avenue Apple Store in Chicago.

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fitness Stories July 29, 2015

wristly

I asked back in May whether you thought the Apple Watch Activity app would lead to a leaner, fitter you. At that point, more than 80% of you said that it either would or already had.

A Wristly survey yesterday suggested that the reality perhaps hadn’t quite lived up to this promise, but still contained some pretty impressive numbers. More than 50% of Watch owners said that they were exercising more and were making better health choices, with around 40% reporting weight loss.

For those of us who were lucky enough to take delivery of our Apple Watches on day one, we’re now three months in. Plenty of time for the novelty to wear off – and to see whether the anticipated benefits really have shown up on the bathroom scale, in our waistlines or in the gym …  expand full story

fitness Stories July 16, 2015

Apple Watch

Following the initial launch campaign, Apple is debuting four new Apple Watch ads showing the device in action in several different real-world scenarios. The first video called Goals demonstrates a range of features including the Apple Watch’s fitness and workout tracking apps as well as third-party apps available for the device. Another video called Closer echoes a similar theme of recent Apple ads that show people using Apple’s products to stay in communication and share experiences. expand full story

fitness Stories June 4, 2015

jawbone

Apple removed most Jawbone and Nike fitness bands from its retail stores back in March, during the run-up to the launch of the Apple Watch. It was assumed then that Apple was purging products that might be felt to compete with its own wearable.

But Jawbone Senior Product Manager Jason Donahue said that its UP2 fitness band will be available in Apple Stores shortly, reports Japanese site Macotakara. The statement was made during a product launch in Japan …  expand full story

fitness Stories June 1, 2015

Screenshot 2015-06-01 10.22.19

Jay Blahnik, one of the lead directors behind the health and fitness functionality in iOS 8 and the Apple Watch, is continuing to host events at Apple Stores. At the end of April, Blahnik held an interview with Christy Turlington Burns at an Apple Store in the United Kingdom, and now Blahnik is making his way to Australia and Asia. Late last week, Blahnik held a Q/A session in Australia with personal trainer Michelle Bridges. Here are videos of Blahnik discussing the importance of walking along with other health tips with Bridges:

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fitness Stories May 25, 2015

How to back up Apple Watch settings & data

Backing up Apple Watch doesn’t work exactly like your iOS device, and some of the data on the watch— like Workout and Activity calibration data, for example— won’t be included in your backup. Head below to learn exactly how to back up your Apple Watch, what to expect when doing so, and how to access the data if need be.

fitness Stories May 22, 2015

heartrate

Apple’s update to Watch OS 1.0.1 was intended to improve the performance of several fitness-related functions, but also appears to have introduced a bug. Instead of the Apple Watch recording your heart rate every ten minutes, many users – including myself – are seeing large gaps in the data.

My readings for yesterday afternoon and evening, shown above, contain four gaps of more than an hour. Two of these gaps span times when I was cycling, when the data would have been most relevant. Users in an Apple Support Communities thread (via EverythingCafe) are reporting the same thing …  expand full story

fitness Stories May 21, 2015

Apple-Watch-Milanese-loop-02

I decided on the Apple Watch with stainless steel Milanese Loop band for a few reasons, but not before considering the benefits and drawbacks of Apple’s entire collection of straps and bands for Apple Watch. Budget will in many cases guide your decision, but going for the Milanese Loop was a no-brainer for me. There are a few downsides of the band compared to others, however.

Here are a few observations I’ve made after wearing it for the last couple weeks, including little talked about pros and cons you’ll want to consider before purchasing the Milanese Loop for yourself. expand full story

fitness Stories May 11, 2015

gamification

Social sharing of exercise data, using services like Strava and RunKeeper, has been one of the bigger trends in recent years. Thanks to fitness bands, smartwatches and GPS-based cycle computers, it’s easy to capture your exercise data and have it automatically uploaded, allowing friends and strangers alike to take part in virtual competitions. It’s effectively gamification of our bodies.

While some take it extremely seriously – so much so that Strava has had to allow users to mark stretches of road or path as dangerous, to stop overly-competitive cyclists mowing down pedestrians in their quest to gain a coveted King of the Mountain award – for most it’s just a fun way to get a bit more exercise and tease their friends.

Any fitness band enables you to compare things like total steps and total calories expended, of course, but the Apple Watch makes it particularly easy to create informal competitions, with yourself or others, to maximize the exercise you get in your everyday life …  expand full story

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