By Siva Om on Wed, 02/27/2013
I love that in this day and age, a great idea can go from relative obscurity to overnight success thanks to the power of the Internet and the funding of the general public. Crowd-funding resource Indiegogo is one of the top websites where great ideas get brought to life, and the Amiigo Fitness Bracelet ($99) is one of its latest success stories.
The popularity of the personalized and customizable vitality tracker already is exceeding expectations, and is now in an expanded fundraising phase as it prepares to bring the Amiigo to market.
Currently, the device and its app are available to early birds for a $99 introductory price, and according to one of Amiigo’s co-founders, David Scott, it should begin shipping to Indiegogo customers in June. Once Indiegogo orders are met, the Amiigo will become available publicly within a few months.
The rumored iWatch may indeed be inching its way closer to market, but until then, there's no shortage of wearable computers to monitor everything from text messages and e-mails to our motions and activities. It will be interesting to see where this new era of the wearable computer takes us. If you’ve been tracking Apple’s patent acquisitions, you can reasonably predict that the future of wearable iOS-oriented technology is about to become a crowded field. The Amiigo fitness monitor is therefore ideally poised to lead the way in this blossoming field and usher in a new era of interactive, wearable smart-technology.
The Spanish word “amigo” means companion, or friend, and as your own personal fitness-tracking device, the Amiigo is just that. It reports back to you regarding everything from your vital statistics to the amount of energy you exert at any given moment. Furthermore, the Amiigo is programmable to detect your own unique motions, giving you the most accurate assessment of your energy output and how your body responds to a variety of specific activities.
While there are certainly other options available for fitness monitors that interface with our iOS devices, the Amiigo is the first I've come across to provide such detailed information on such a wide range of motions and activities. This is the closest thing to a commercially available, AI fitness monitor that I've seen so far.
According to Amiigo’s Indiegogo campaign, "The Amiigo allows users to track specifics like; exercise type, reps, sets, duration, speed, and intensity. Amiigo also tracks heart rate, blood oxygen levels, skin temperature, overall activity level, and calories burned."
Additionally, "The Amiigo can determine exactly what kind of exercise activity you are doing and can track and identify over one hundred different activities and then correlate these activities with physiological information such as heart rate and blood oxygen saturation. With the Amiigo users can also create and record new exercises that might be unique, abstract or specific to them. After a user records an exercise, it will be recognized in future workouts!"
Recently Amiigo co-founder David Scott took some time with iPhone Life to discuss the Amiigo and how informative, intuitive, and innovative it truly is.
iPhone Life: Thank you for taking the time to chat with iPhone Life. For starters, can you tell our readers a little bit about your inspiration and goals for the Amiigo?
Scott: With the Amiigo, our focus was to create the most engaging fitness experience, in the most user-friendly format. The Amiigo provides measurements and tracking that will definitely be helpful to hardcore athletes, but it’s also designed to be helpful to the less dedicated athletes. The Amiigo was designed to help an individual tailor their personal fitness goals to meet their workouts.
The Amiigo allows you to share your metrics and stats with family and friends. We feel that the social (competitive) element means that you will be more likely to achieve your fitness goals. The Amiigo software can easily be integrated with Facebook, and we are also working hard to build our own social platform.
iPhone Life:We've seen a number of wearable fitness monitors pop up over the past couple of years, how does the Amiigo set itself apart from the rest of the options out there?
Scott:Well, two years ago this sector didn’t even exist. Currently, most fitness monitors are just glorified oximeters, they don't register motion, so that means they don’t register anything on a stair stepper or while cycling for instance.
If you do exercises like free-weight squats or leg presses, other devices may not even register that you did anything, much less that you had different exhaustive experiences. The Amiigo will provide you with precise physiological data that lets you know what you did and how much energy you exerted as well as incorporate a social element that can really help you feel motivated and inspired.
The Amiigo Fitness Bracelet is ideal for:
· The Gym: Weight Equipment, Cardio Equipment, Free Weights, Crossfit
· Cycling: Road and Mountain Biking
· The Water: Swimming and Water Sports
· Outdoors: Hiking, Walking, Jogging
· Sports: Basketball, Soccer, Baseball, Tennis, Golf, Football, Rugby
· You: Create and Record your Unique Exercises