The "Fit Tech" space is heating up rapidly, as evidenced by the dozens of manufacturers on display in the "Fit Zone" at this year's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Among them was GeoPalz, a Boulder, CO based maker of children's pedometers.
The role of technology in fitness used to be limited to timing a run or measuring your heart rate. With this new wave of tiny devices, technology is enabling an enhanced level of personal awareness - from sleep patterns to daily physical activity to food intake.
GeoPalz has one mission: to help parents motivate their kids to be active outdoors. That's what made their new ibitz line of activity trackers standout from the crowd at CES. Whereas nearly all tracking devices are designed exclusively for adults, the ibitz line features two products - one for kids and another for moms or dads.
What's really special about ibitz, however, is the stuff you can do with them. Most "trackers" collect data on your activity and then quantify that for you in a display - often a smartphone app that syncs with the device. That's great, but ibitz takes things one step farther by leveraging that activity to reward kids with access to games and other motivators.
The ibitz "Power Key" unlocks rewards and games via a smartphone app when the child has earned the requisite activity. There's even a feature that will interface with the parental control functions of certain devices, motivating kids to become more active in order to earn their access to screen time.
The ibitz "Unity" is designed for the parent. It tracks physical activity and has a smartphone app, too, but will also provide mom with the ability to view the entire family's activity in one holistic view. It collects data from the kids' Power Key and will even interface with competitive devices such as Fitbit, so everyone in the family can have the device that's right for them.
It's a brilliant execution and I'm proud to have contributed to the effort. Look for ibitz in retail stores and online later this spring or visit www.ibitz.com for more info.
|Media Coverage of the ibitz Debut at CES, January, 2013|