When the Apple Watch's watchOS received its 11.1 update in October 2017, the mobile operating system officially became GymKit-equipped. The new feature allows watch owners to sync directly with fitness equipment such as treadmills, and a handful of vendors are already working to make their products compatible.
In a Dec. 11 media release, Technogym, Cesena, Italy, announced its cardio products—treadmills, ellipticals, indoor bikes, stair-steppers—are now all compatible with GymKit via a new interface called UNITY.
Once a piece of fitness equipment and the watch connect, data between both will sync and display seamlessly. This includes calories, distance, speed, floors climbed, incline and pace.
“At Technogym we are committed to promoting a wellness lifestyle and to engage more and more people in regular physical exercise with our connected fitness equipment and unique ecosystem,” Technogym CEO Nerio Alessandri said in the release. “We are very proud to introduce to the fitness and wellness industry this integrated and innovative experience with Apple Watch and excited to bring this to exercisers around the world.”
Life Time Athletic at Sky in New York City will be the first health club to offer GymKit integration with Technogym products, according to the release.
Life Fitness, Lake Forest, Illinois, on Dec. 12 announced the brand's cardio products will be GymKit-compatible in the first quarter of 2018. New Equinox clubs opening in 2018 will be the first to offer GymKit integration with Life Fitness products, according to the media release.
“There are over 700 million workouts per year on our cardio machines across the globe, and we know that exercisers want personalized workouts with easy data tracking,” Life Fitness President Jaime Irick said in the release. “This new capability is just another example of how we’re innovating to deliver exceptional experiences to exercisers and keep them motivated to achieve their goals.”
According to a Dec. 8 report by Apple Insider, Apple is working to integrate GymKit with "over 80 percent of companies that make potentially compatible hardware."
A Dec. 11 review by CNET positively outlines the process of syncing GymKit with any cardio machine.
"GymKit works with a simple tap-to-pair process: Tapping a ready piece of equipment starts the process, and the Apple Watch brings up a confirmation screen," the review states. "With treadmills, it asks if you want to record a walk or a run. From there, everything on the Apple Watch and the fitness machine's readout are synced: heart rate, pace, active and total calorie estimates, and machine-specific data such as elevation and flights of stairs climbed."