Performance-tracking earbuds designed to coach swimmers in real time
It was just this year that we heard about the Sonr radio system, which lets coaches talk to swimmers via a waterproof speaker worn by the latter. It's a neat idea, but what happens when the coach isn't around? Well, that's where Athlos Live is designed to come in.
Presently on Indiegogo, Athlos Live takes the form of a connected set of waterproof earbuds, each one of which incorporates a relatively small electronic module. They're linked via Bluetooth to an iOS/Android app on the athlete's smartphone.
Utilizing that app, the swimmer (or their coach) starts by creating a training session plan, then uploads it into the earbuds. That plan includes data such as how many laps of which strokes they have to complete, in what amount of time. They can also store up to 5,000 songs on the system.
Once they start swimming, an IMU (inertial measurement unit) detects what sort of stroke they're currently performing, plus it counts laps, keeps track of elapsed time, and monitors the orientation of their head. A synthetic voice provides them with real-time feedback, letting them know how many laps they've completed, whether or not they have to speed up, what stroke they should perform next, and if their technique needs adjusting.
When they're not receiving those audio prompts, they can listen to their training music.
The system does not need to be linked to the wearer's smartphone, once they hit the water. Additionally, once the training session is over, the user can review their performance via a dashboard on the app. The technology can also be utilized to provide virtual coaching for land-based sports, such as running and basketball.
A pledge of US$125 is required for one Athlos Live system. Assuming it reaches production, its retail price will be $199.
A similar crowfunded device, the Swimbot, appears to no longer be available. The Triton 2 is available, and while it does track swimming metrics in real time, it doesn't provide audio cues to the swimmer.