updated 05:55 pm EDT, Tue May 23, 2006
A look at Nike+iPod
As noted this morning, Nike's Air Zoom Moire is the first footwear designed to talk to Apple's iPod nano, and the company has plans to make many of its leading footwear styles Nike+ ready. The Air Zoom Moire connects to the iPod through the wireless Nike+iPod Sport Kit, which includes an in-shoe sensor and a receiver that attaches to iPod. After a workout, users can connect the Nano to a Mac or PC to automatically sync and store workout data in a customized workout log on nikeplus.com with the help of iTunes. Nikeplus.com allows users to log workout data, view and evaluate personal training goals, and review distance, time, pace, and calories burned through a dynamic interface. The Air Zoom Moire is priced at $100, while the Nike+iPod Sport Kit is priced at $30.
iTunes Nike Sport Music section
The Nike Sport Music section of the iTunes Music Store, which is listed as 'coming soon,' offers features such as Workouts, special coaching mixes with music, and voiceover instruction from athletes. The Nike Sport Music section will also include podcasts by Nike, Sport iMix playlists created and posted by iTunes users, and a special workout mix created by "The Crystal Method." The new iTunes product will also require iTunes 6.05, which has yet to be released.
Workout boost, visualization/analysis
A new PowerSong feature is designed to help users "boost" a workout by briefly holding the center button on the iPod to activate the pre-selected Power Song and help "kick a workout to the next level." The device will also provide audio feedback about various parameters, such as pace, time lapsed, and other details.
The kit will also automatically sync-up gathered data to Nikeplus.com, which will keep stats on every step, including speed, distance, and calories burned -- by run, by week, or by month using an intuitive graphical interface.
Nike+iPod Starter Kit
The Sport Kit allows your Nike+ shoe to talk to your iPod nano using a sensitive accelerometer to measure activity; it then wirelessly transfers this data to the receiver connected to the iPod nano.
The Nike+ sensor, which sends data wirelessly via 2.4GHz radio signals (using a proprietary protocol), is 1.37 x 0.95 x 0.30 inches and weighs only 0.23 ounces, while the receiver that attached to the iPod nano is 1.03 x 0.62 x 0.22 inches and weighs 0.12 ounces. Unfortunately, Apple says that the battery in the sensor is not replaceable.
Apparel and accessories
Nike also is introducing a range of performance apparel and accessories, including jackets, tops, shorts and armbands designed for the iPod nano and Nike+iPod Sport Kit. All Nike+ apparel is designed for athletes by integrating ergonomic design, performance-specific materials, ventilation, and weather protection.
Forthcoming Nike+ footwear
Nike is planning to introduce six other footwear styles this fall that are Nike+ ready: the Air Zoom Plus, Air Max Moto, Nike Shox Turbo OH, Air Max 180, Nike Shox Navina, and Air Max 90.