Augmented reality bounced around for years as a novelty technology until Pokémon Go brought it to the masses. The mobile app took the world by storm with its AR-gaming experience that brought the virtual world into the real world. Now Vancouver-based startup Form is hoping to bring AR into the fitness realm with its new AR-equipped swim goggles.
The Form swim goggles look like any other pair of goggles you’d see people wearing at a triathlon. They have a sleek look with a clear lens, water-tight fit, and a sturdy strap that’ll help keep the goggles securely attached to your head while swimming. The only difference you’ll notice is the extra bulk on the right side that holds the AR technology that makes these goggles so unique. There’s also a battery that’ll promise to deliver up to 16 hours of swim tracking per charge.
Athletes wearing the goggles can view their performance metrics on an augmented reality display that is built into the lens. Swimmers can see their stroke rate, distance, pace, split time, and more on the integrated display. Because it is an AR overlay, the swimmer’s view of the pool and other people in the water are not obscured.
Swimmers can customize the goggles allowing them to chose which two metrics they want to see on the swim screen. Swimmers also can decide when each parameter appears — while swimming, after turns, or during rest. When they are done swimming, the swim details are sent to the Form mobile app where it can be analyzed and shared with coaches as well as the Form community.
The Form goggle is not only a useful tool for the recreational athlete, but it’s also a game-changer for the coach-trained athlete. The goggles allow the swimmer to see their metrics and make changes on the fly to improve their performance in real-time. At the same time, the mobile app lets coaches and swimmers review performances, so they make adjustments in training and technique for the next pool session.
According to Form’s founder, Dan Eisenhardt, the company has been working with this technology for years, but hasn’t been able to miniaturize it enough to fit effectively into a swim goggle that people would wear. With smaller sensors and better batteries, Form finally had the hardware to embed this technology into swim goggles that are small and lightweight for both competitive and recreational swimming. The Form swim goggles will be available on August 7th for $199. The companion mobile app also will debut on August 7 in both the iOS App Store and Google Play store.