A recently-funded Indiegogo project, Angel Sensor will monitor your vital signs and let developers create apps that make use of all that information collected. Expected to retail for $159, the Angel wrist band is still available for a $20 savings on Indiegogo. The device will ship with "Foundation Apps" that let you monitor your body's basic data right out of the box, but by giving developers access to the raw data from additional sensors, we expect there will be many more apps to come.
The Indiegogo page indicates that the Angel Sensor will collect more information than other fitness bands, including, skin temperature, heart rate and blood oxygen saturation. Beyond the basic data such as steps taken or heart rate, the founders have envisioned apps such as a Fertility Calendar that uses the device's temperature sensor to detect ovulation, and Golf Trainer that tracks your motion to analyze your shots. But for those to exist the company will have to attract the attention of a developer.
Available in black or white, the band supports Bluetooth Low Energy, making it compatible with iPhones 4s and up, as well as select Android devices such Samsung Galaxy S4. The Bluetooth standard also makes it immediately compatible with existing apps such as Wahoo Fitness and Runkeeper.
In addition to sporting LED indicators, a vibrating motor and a buzzer, the Angel also works as a watch and alarm clock, and logs data for up to 7 days. It can even be gesture controlled with some basic hand motions. The first orders of the band are expected to ship in April 2014, and you can still donate now for an early price of $135 on the team's Indiegogo page. Stay tuned for our full review.
RunKeeper (Free; iOS, Android)
Runkeeper isn't just for running. At the beginning of your workout, simply select your activity type, such as running, biking, hiking or biking, and RunKeeper gets to work. The app will track your location, give you updates as your complete milestones, and provide metrics after your workout. RunKeeper also integrates with over 70 other apps and accessories, such as the Fitbit and Fitocracy.
Gorilla Workout is like having your own personal trainer who has built a customized exercise routine based on your skill level and goals. Users are presented with a set of exercises each day, targeting different muscle groups and working towards losing weight, building muscle or gaining energy. Gorilla Workout has hundreds of unique regimens that can be performed at home with no gym memberships or equipment required.
Nutritionists will tell you that one of the best ways to start eating healthier is to start tracking your meals. Lose It is a comprehensive food and exercise tracker with a comprehensive database of foods and activities. Beyond the preloaded food, Lose It also supports entering your own food items or recipes, making it easy to track even complex meals.
If you haven't yet memorized your asanas, PocketYoga puts your favorite yoga instructor directly onto your smartphone. There are three different styles, each with three different durations and three different difficulty levels. There are unique routines for high intensity training, relaxation and power, plus a Sun Salutation A and Sun Salutation B with your choice of between two to 108 repetitions. Each pose is beautifully illustrated and can be attached to an external monitor using AirPlay or the appropriate cables.
Motivation is one of the most important aspects of any workout routine. GymPact is an app that helps keep you motivated by putting something you really care about on the line: your money. Users set their exercise schedule at the beginning of each week then pay for every missed workout. That collected funds are then distributed to everyone who kept their pacts. GymPact is the perfect app if you need a little extra push.
Interval training, where exercisers switch back and forth between two different activities or intensities, can help make workouts more efficient and effective. Seconds Pro is the de factro app for interval training, offering large, easy-to-read numbers, the grouping and saving of different timers and templates for popular exercise intervals.
If you love running outdoors but miss the performance stats available on the trusty treadmill, MapMyRun helps put the digital into your analog run. This app is a complete workout toolkit, perfect for tracking and summarizing all your workouts, from runs and cycling to sit ups and push ups. For outdoor activities, the app tracks your location using GPS in order to calculate distance, pace and intensity. The MVP premium account, which costs $5.99 per month or $29.99 for a year, includes live tracking, interval training and mobile coaching.
Working out doesn't need to be a solo activity. With Fitocracy, users can join a vibrant community of fitness enthusiasts of all levels. You don't just track your workouts, you can share your accomplishments with other users, earn points and interact with people that have similar goals.
The world has become overrun with Zombies and you’re part of a small group of survivors who must scavenge for food and supplies. Zombies, Run! 2 is the second installment of the thrilling zombie tale that turns your daily jog into an intricate story, complete with character stories and missions. Runners listen to the story of the undead unfold around them, picking up items as they run, then distributing them back at home base.
If you’re tracking your meals, the size of the food database matters. My Fitness Pal has the nutritional information for over two million different items with new foods added daily. The app also supports creating your own items as well as entering recipes in order to calculate the final nutritional value for your meals. You can enter goals and view full reports in order to monitor your progress and stay on track.
Cherlynn joined the Laptopmag team in June 2013 and has since been writing about all things tech and digital with a focus on mobile and Internet software development. She also edits and reports occasionally on video. She graduated with a M.S. in Journalism (Broadcast) from Columbia University in May 2013 and has been designing personal websites since 2001.