Just because Nike is putting the kibosh on its FuelBand, doesn’t mean athletes don’t want helpful wearable technology. Surfing is the rare sport that hasn’t been overly tracked or measured, but now surf brand Rip Curl has applied a Nike+ approach to riding waves with its new Search GPS watch, which lets surfers find waves, then record and relive the wave counts, speed, and distance of any given session.
Created with Australian agency VML, the watch uses satellite positioning to get time and tide information from more than 1,300 surf breaks around the world instantaneously. Surfing stats are shown in real time on the watch face, and can later be synced over Bluetooth to an iOS device or on the Desktop app. Afterwards, surfers can watch their entire surfing session represented primarily with graphic overlays of their collected GPS data on satellite imagery, then share it with friends within the Rip Curl Search GPS platform.
The brand used the recent 53rd Rip Curl Pro, the longest-running surfing contest in history, to introduce the watch to surfers around the planet. It’s already being worn by the brand’s test riders worldwide, including Mick Fanning, who was wearing it when he won the contest at Bells Beach.
In a statement, VML managing director and executive creative director Aden Hepburn said it isn’t just about tracking waves. “It’s about empowering surfers to tell their stories in new ways, to create new social connections, and to visualize and share the experience that previously has lasted just a moment.”
It’s not set to hit stores just yet, but eager surfers can register their interest with RIp Curl online.