Wahoo Blue SC Speed/Cadence Sensor
A lot of wearable wrist band fitness trackers aren’t great at measuring cycling compared to running, so if you’re putting together a regimen based on exercise that is easy to quantify, you may be tempted to put your bike away. Not so fast! The Wahoo Blue SC attaches to your bicycle and then works with your favorite cycling app to track your cycling speed, cadence, and distance on your iPhone while you ride. Even better, its internal odometer can break down the lifetime mileage ridden on your bike by week, month and even year. So get peddling.
Withings WS-50 Health Mate
Remember when scales just told you your weight? Not any more! The Withings WS-50 smart scale not only records your weight and body fat percentage, but also analyzes metrics like air quality and resting heart rate. It can then share this data with various fitness apps, such as Fitbit’s. While that’s all well and good, it’s real advantage is the context it gives you: letting you track your body fitness over time so you can get a sense of whether your routine is working for you.
SITU Smart Food Scale
This one’s a bit of a cheat since it’s not out yet, but it was one of the most intriguing Kickstarter campaigns of the year—and one I rushed to put my money toward. In short, SITU is a connected food scale that talks to your iPad. By showing you the exact nutrition content of any food you place on it, the device lets users see the exact calories, sugar, salt, protein, vitamins and minerals of any food they’re about to eat, based on that food’s weight. It was also the creation of a former Apple employee, who came up with the idea while sitting in the corporate cafeteria in Cupertino.
Another connected device with Apple DNA, Shine is made by Misfit, a startup co-founded by former Apple head honcho John Sculley. Carved out of a solid block of aircraft-grade aluminum, the wireless device can be strapped to a wristband, or clipped onto a shirt, pair of pants, or shoe. Once there it can track activity and sleep, with users able to set specific goals using an accompanying iPhone app. A very elegant fitness solution from the man who brought you the Newton.
Zepp Golf Sensor
Essentially a glove-sized connected caddy, golfers can clip this device to their glove and receive detailed feedback on everything from the speed and arc of their swing, to the angle of their hip rotation. You can then review this device on your iPhone and compare the stats with friends. Zepp also makes variants for both tennis and baseball.
adidas miCoach SMART BALL
I know what you’re thinking when you first see the adidas miCoach SMART BALL: “Was someone’s caps lock broken when they decided to name it?” Quite possibly is the answer. That doesn’t taken away from what is genuinely a pretty nifty piece of kit, however. Looking a bit like the egg from the Alien poster in the picture above, the miCoach SMART BALL is a FIFA-approved football that doesn’t just tell you how hard you’ve kicked a ball, or how much spin you’ve put on it, but also the exact impact zones and its flight trajectory. Plus there’s no Android app available, so you’ll always have an advantage over your Samsung-wielding mates.
Viiiiva Heart Rate Monitor
Okay, seriously, what is it with fitness apps that look like someone either can’t use their caps lock or, in this case, leant on the “i” key for too long? The Viiiiva is a handy heart rate monitor that connects to your iPhone. The monitor measures your heart rate and, when paired with the right foot sensor pod, can monitor (deep breath) your heart rate, speed, cadence, power, calories burned, and distance traveled.
Based on the sheer amount of biotech experts it’s been hiring, the fact that Apple has its eyes set on the health and fitness tracking sector is one for the “Cupertino’s Worst Kept Secrets” file. But after tons of speculation about the iWatch, Monday’s WWDC keynote provided a first glimpse of an actual Apple creation in this category with its upcoming Health app for iOS 8.
Then Apple dropped a brand new ad for the iPhone 5s, adding a sporty spin to the company’s current trend for showing Apple products used in real-life scenarios in its commercials. If you’re anything like us, it makes you think two things. Firstly, that Apple will revolutionize the health tracking field like it did the personal computer, music player, smartphone and tablet market. Secondly, that we need to hurry up and drop the flab for summer.
With that in mind, here are our picks for the best iOS-compatible fitness devices currently on the market — including the skinny on specific gadgets from the latest iPhone ad (which, incidentally, had fitness-tracking watches conspicuous by their absence.)
Let us know in the comments what tracking gear you’re using and what you hope Apple will provide next.