Stand down tech giants, it looks like watch manufacturer Timex might also be vying for a slice of the wearable fitness pie with its latest gadget, the Ironman One GPS+.
This rather serious-looking device is a smartwatch built for fitness and handily doesn’t need a phone nearby for it to function properly. If you’re a fan of running (or any other kind of high intensity workout) you’ll know that the thought of constantly carrying around your phone to track your activity or worse still wearing a fitness band AND carrying around your phone to track your activity is a little irritating, so the Ironman One GPS+ will hopefully make a refreshing (and not to mention little lighter) difference to your exercise routine.
Many have been commenting today that the Ironman One GPS+ isn’t packing as many features as some of the higher-end models that are being launched later this year, but from what we can tell it doesn’t want to compete with the rest. It’s clear the Ironman One is built for both fitness lovers and serious athletes, so it doesn’t care that it isn’t as sleek and stylish as some of the newer offerings from the likes of Withings and Motorola.
Instead, the watch is dedicated to serving up information about how well you’re performing on your runs and workouts, with details about the route you’ve taken, your heart rate, the distance you’ve travelled, how well you’ve done compared to previous days and lots more. It does it all from its robust and waterproof casing, which is subtle to say it’s built for fitness, but still manages to look fairly sporty and we imagine it’ll be at home with the rest of your workout gear.
The thing that sets it apart from other wearables dedicated solely to fitness is that it’s got its own 3G connection. This means that you can receive messages while you’re out and about, but annoyingly it looks like they’ll have to be sent to a dedicated email address, which is a bit of a pain.
For those anxious about going for a run without their phones on them as a comfort blanket, the Ironman One can send out a pre-determined SOS signal which will transmit your exact location. It may sound a little OTT, but it’s certainly a nice addition given it’s aimed at those who might enjoy more extreme sports and outdoor activities.
And finally, if the thought of doing any kind of physical activity without your own personal soundtrack blaring in the background makes you feel anxious, then the Ironman One will be able to hold a small amount of MP3’s and team up with a Bluetooth headset – you’ll just need to find one that can handle your sweat and ground-pounding!
In theory the Ironman One GPS+ looks like a great addition to Timex’s current line-up of fitness watches and the fact it’s relatively ‘smart’ means it could turn out to be a great alternative for those who after a smartwatch but value fitness tracking features above anything else.
We’ve got no official details about pricing or availability just yet, but we’ll keep you posted!