Making a lower-cost iPod Shuffle alternative to the Apple Watch is almost inevitable with a $279 price floor for an Apple Watch (Series 3), and Fitbit trackers proving the strength of the market for lost-cost fitness-focused accelerometers (Fitbit Ace $99). But what if this was not only a low-cost alternative, but also a unique companion product to the Watch and AirPods? What novel uses and measurements could such a “Shuffle” device make?
Consider that having two accelerometers (Watch + Shuffle) would vastly improve:
- Sleep monitoring
- Excercise monitoring
- Fall detection
And what if the Shuffle could also be placed on the ankle? It could improve all motion measurements through redundancy but also enable new analysis:
- Pace analysis
- Gate analysis (biometric)
- Choreographic analysis
It would not be difficult for such a device to quickly learn where it was placed, allowing you to use two devices on both wrists or move them to both ankles (one could be a watch!), or a wrist and an ankle for different activites (e.g. opposite lims & sides for optimal pace analysis).
The features of such a device could be very minimal to keep the price low (for both stand-alone and companion purchases):
- High precision motion detection
- Haptic notifications for sleep wake, etc.
- Minimal light array for power level, etc.
- Inductive charging
What would be the big win for companion use with Airpods? A true Shuffle-like music player? Possibly. Perhaps some type of voice programming or activity feedback?
Overall, this product would be very Apple-like because it has a singular function but very many uses across many markets.
- Low cost fitness tracking (kids, elderly, developing markets)
- High precision fitness tracking (athletes, coaches)
- High precision motion tracking (health safety, choreography, biometrics)
For price, we’d like to see $99, but I expect $119-149.