The Nike+ hardware chip may become obsolete with the introduction of the software in mobile form.
Following the recent launch of Adidas’ (free) miCoach running app, Nike has launched Nike+ GPS as an iPhone app to help educate runners on their training and performance progress. The advantages of the mobile app over its precursor – Nike+ hardware – include utilization of GPS radio in compatible iDevices to track, plot and map your runs, utilizing the accelerometer in the iPhone to record your pace. For $1.99 (vs. $29 for the Nike+ chip), you can track your progress online, browse previous runs, and share it on the Nike+ site – and do much of this from the same hardware from which you’ll play your music playlist during your run.
While the comparable Adidas miCoach app is free, it will be interesting to see if the equity Nike built amongst runners with Nike+ will translate into higher mobile app downloads – and increased running shoe/apparel sales – for Nike than for Adidas. In this case, the competition between the two brands is ultimately good for more educated runners, with more options.