In early November, I attended a presentation by Brad Feld and David Cohen where they were talking about their very successful Seed Stage Accelerator program, Tech Stars which I will talk about in a different post. During one of the presentations, Brad mentioned the FIT BIT and pulled his off his sleeve to show us. Fit Bit is a wireless consumer product that tracks a lot of data about the person wearing it. For example, the number of steps you take each day, how many miles you’ve walked and how many calories you have burned. It will also track your caloric intake if you take the time to put in what you eat. They have a wide array of foods already in the system, but you can add your own. Below is a picture of my Fit Bit.
Another cool tracking item is tracking your movements while you sleep. It is as easy as pressing the button on the Fit Bit just before you go to sleep (You will see “START”) and then press it again when you wake up (You will see STOP). More importantly, you will be able to see your movements while you slept. For some, this will be huge! Many of us have Sleep Apnea and don’t know it. Checking out this data might show a lot of activity and lead to get some professional guidance about whether you have it or not and how to treat it before you have real problems.
I started to get interested in wireless medical/consumer products earlier this year and think they will be the next new new thing. It is amazing how many products are under development and it seems like there are just as many being developed for consumers are there are for medical applications.
FitBit is one product that will give you some insight into how these wireless consumer devices will help. It is easy to use, well thought out and useful web interface. I have been using it for a month and find that I attempt to beat my score from the previous day. I do things like park a little further from the entrance of stores or walk up and down the stairs a few more times. I also get a an accurate idea about just how active I was on the treadmill. All this for only $99. There are a few reasonably priced upgrades that I might take advantage of once I am into this for a couple more months.
One question someone asked was can you put together groups and track progress, hold special events, etc. This sounds exactly like what the Nike/Apple folks learned with the shoe/iPod connection; lot’s of people wanted to challenge other people and look at results for an activity this is usually personal. Interesting, I might look into this.
I think the FitBit is great and having fun with it. Let me know if any of you try it and your experience with it.