Nike+ iPod integration

Nike+

Nike teamed up with Apple to offer new products and services combined with the iPod nano. The new partnership will include electronics, clothing, and online services for people who like to listen to music while working out. Apple claims 50% of iPod owners use their music players during a workout. The new campaign is called Nike+ and features community and social networking components.

The first product is the Nike+iPod Sport Kit, a $29 accessory connecting your shoe and your iPod. Runners can place a small sensor under their shoe insole and connect a receiver to their iPod nano to track statistics during and after their workout. Your workout progress and statistics such as pace, total time, and total distance are updated on-screen and with audio cues through your headphones. When you return to your desktop, sync your iPod nano and upload to Nike to track your progress over time and compare with friends. Nike will begin selling specially equipped shoes in June with a cutout for the sensor. Nike will also produce special apparel with an iPod nano pouch and headphone cord management.

The experience begins during your workout, but doesn’t end there. You can connect to the Nike+ website and track your running statistics and improvement over time, tracking your individual goals along the way. You can share your training information with others, and setup virtual races with friends to compare your times over the same course. Nike also launched a podcast to follow the progress of a marathon trainer in San Francisco. Perhaps in the future anyone could add their own audio to their workout blog and statistics.

Not sure what to listen to during your workout? Nike athletes have contributed their favorite “PowerSongs” to get them pumped up.

  • Ronaldo: Elevation by U2
  • Landon Donovan: Where is the Love, Black Eyed Peas
  • Freddy Adu: Motivation by T.I.

I think the new service will be extremely popular. If Nike opens up its data, allowing for easy sharing, personal trainers could follow the progress of their clients and tune workouts. The program is not limited to Nike shoes; other manufacturers could support a similar sensor cutout to pair with the workout tracker. $30 to obsess over workout statistics seems like a pretty good deal. Thanks Nike!

6 comments

Commentary on "Nike+ iPod integration":

  1. Chris on wrote:

    Seeing this made me instantly order a 4GB nano!!

    Anyway, does anyone know how this thing actually works? Does it have to be in the sole of the shoe, or can you attach it to the laces or wherever on a non nike pair of shoes?

    If I can get away with it I’d like to stick with my Asics…

  2. Trish Kabus on wrote:

    I want to know how it tracks the distance. i hope its not a glorified pedometer and has the accuracy of a gps!

  3. Oyvind Solstad on wrote:

    “If Nike opens up its data, allowing for easy sharing, personal trainers could follow the progress of their clients and tune workouts.”

    But even better: What if all training data were in a format that all kinds of gadgets and machines could use? iPods, pedometers, GPS, treadmill, dance pads, Xbox, Playstation, Wii etc.

    Let’s create a microformat for training.

  4. gagar on wrote:

    The device hosts an accelerometer. You thus need it built into your shoe to sense your steps…

  5. Chris on wrote:

    Well its only $29 so I dont think you can really complain if its not 100% accurate. I imagine that it takes the average distance of your stride, couhts them, and figures out how far you have gone.

  6. Michelle on wrote:

    Chris, I completely agree! I’m already devoted to my brand of shoes and I don’t want to have to de-devote myself. The insert goes into the sole of the shoe and the wireless adapter goes on the end of your iPod where you would normally charge it. I went to Nike+ Site
    to register and poke around and I gotta say I was impressed. I encourage any runner to register or just view the tutorials. You’ll get hooked. And for 29 bucks…that ain’t bad.
    Oh for those who don’t want to change brands and buy the Nike+ shoes that already have the space in the soles for the insert, there’s an instructables website that shows you how you can do it yourself.