February 2, 2009 GPS specialist Garmin has announced a new fitness watch that offers new levels of functionality and convenience using wireless connectivity at the 2009 ISPO Winter trade show in Munich. While you exercise, the easy-to-use FR60 accurately tracks your time, calories burned, heart rate and other data from wirelessly linked fitness equipment, then once you’re within range of your computer, the information is wirelessly transferred and stored for later analysis.
The central element of the user-friendly FR60 system is an advanced fitness watch which interfaces wirelessly with other ANT+™ compatible fitness devices such as a heart rate monitor, a foot pod that monitors speed and distance or third-party fitness equipment at the gym or at home.
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Available in men’s and women’s versions, the FR60 comes with a wireless USB ANT™ Stick that plugs into the user’s PC or Mac and automatically downloads workout data stored on the watch to a personal computer. No cables are necessary as the FR60 quickly synchronizes with the computer once it is in close proximity. The workouts themselves are made easier with the FR60 as its robust heart rate monitor and slimmed-down foot pod transmit data wirelessly and activate automatically upon movement, removing the need to turn the lightweight accessories on and off. Available in three colors – red, lilac and black – the streamlined FR60 comes packaged with a heart rate monitor, and the foot pod is available in select FR60 bundles.
While the FR60 processes much of the same data as its GPS-enabled predecessors, those functions are packaged in a very compact device the size of a typical fitness watch. The FR60 can track and record up to 15 hours and 100 laps of detailed exercise data. And because the FR60 records its data from the heart rate monitor, foot pod and ANT+ compatible fitness equipment, users can exercise indoors.
Triathletes will embrace the versatility of the swim-friendly FR60 as it helps them train and race indoors or outdoors, on the bike, in the water or on the trail. The featherweight foot pod enables the FR60 to track and record speed, distance, calories burned, steps and cadence without excess burden. Cycling enthusiasts will enjoy the versatile options of adding a bike speed and cadence sensor and a handy bike mount.
Adding to the wide range of uses and wireless connectivity, FR60 users in the United States will be able to link effortlessly to their ANT+ compatible fitness equipment such as treadmills, spin bikes, elliptical trainers and more. More information about these ANT+ compatible products will be announced in March at the International Health, Racquet and Sportsclub Association (IHRSA) international convention and trade show in San Francisco.
When used with Garmin Connect, Garmin’s online training site, users can automatically log their workouts, track their totals, share workouts with coaches and training partners and participate in an online fitness community with similar interests.
The wireless features of the FR60 are enabled by ANT+ personal area network technology. ANT+ is a leading wireless interface protocol enabling ultra low power applications like fitness monitors. ANT+ offers all the benefits of digital wireless communications with much lower power consumption than other wireless protocols. The men’s version of the FR60 weighs just 44 grams, the women’s model weighs 41 grams, and each has a user-replaceable battery with a one-year life.