Friday, June 24, 2011

Hey @fitbit ur doin it rong

That new fitbit device looks pretty nifty. It even has "social." You can connect with your friends, and it keeps a leader board for you all to watch. The past week, the past month, that's the game. I don't see a lot of action there. I'd rather have some good casual games, small enough to fit in a game with friends one afternoon.

For example, take the famous 24 Hours of LeMans race, where drivers race on a track for exactly 24 hours, at which point whoever completed the most laps wins. You can do the same thing with a pedometer, and you can use any time period: a day, an afternoon, a week - as long as somebody gets to say, "Ready, set... Go!" When the time is up, whoever has been most active wins. After all, being active is what fitbit measures.

Can everyone play? Even couch potatoes?

Yes, if you do a good job handicapping the races, like you would in the game of golf. For example, I walk a lot -- 45 minutes to and from work every day, plus to the store and everywhere else. I drive maybe once a week. My friend leads a rather more sedentary lifestyle, to put it mildly. How can we compete against each other? The game could analyze our past fitbit records and use that level to assign a handicap for each player. I don't play golf but I think that's how it works.

This will make real competitions possible, regardless of lifestyle or current fitness level. How would you feel knowing you could beat your marathon-running buddy in a fitbit race?

That's it, casual competition with friends, each of us playing to our own level of health. If fitbit can do that, I'll buy one just because my friends are doing it.

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