Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Nike Fuelband Round 2

It's another Wednesday and another attempt at getting a elusive Nike FuelBand. I'll let the pictures tell the tale...

For my thoughts you can check out the rant here

Monday, February 27, 2012

Overthinking the Fuelband

Given the extended wait for more FuelBands I figured i'd help the time pass with my thoughts. For anyone wondering when more Fuelbands will be available here is a quote from NikeFuel's twitter:
"We’ll have more Nike+ FuelBands in limited quantities on 2/29. We'll tweet the link at approximately 5p EST."
But until then let's look the Nike FuelBand in relation to the 6th generation iPod Nano.

I'd like to preface this blog by stating that, at the time of writing, I own neither a iPod nano or a Nike Fuelband. It is currently my desire to obtain a Fuelband for personal use although I doubt that will happen any time soon. I have no affiliations with Nike or Apple.

Now then, if you read my previous blog you know my thoughts on how ridiculous Nike was with last week's Fuelband release. I don't plan on beating a dead horse and I don't wanna pick on Nike here but I'm inclined to be a little interested in this devices future when you really think about it.

Many other articles I have read have began comparing the Fuelband to other health tracking devices. It was articles like those that peaked my attention toward Fitbit, and I may share my thoughts on that at a later time. My reason behind todays comparison though is because I see a foreshadowing of a possible future, in this particular market, between two companies, Nike and Apple.

Let's begin by looking at the relevant product statistics of Nike's Fuelband and Apple's iPod Nano:

For this comparison I want to completely ignore the fact that the iPod also is a music player.

Nike+ Fuelband (size: medium) 
1.06 oz
4 day battery life  
Nike's Description:"Nike+ FuelBand tracks your activity through a sport-tested accelerometer, then translates every move into NikeFuel. Nike+ FuelBand tracks running, walking, dancing, basketball- and dozens of everyday activities. So put it on and get moving."
iPod Nano 6th Generation (without optional wristband) 
0.74 oz
24 hour battery life (music) 
Apple's Description:"The built-in accelerometer in iPod nano gives you real-time feedback on your workout, and you can upload data to the Nike+ website. There’s no need to connect a receiver or use a shoe sensor to track your steps, distance, pace, and time."

Both devices are light, have accelerometers, and without music playback the nano can possibly get more than the advertised battery life.With so many likeness in one device, as well as a preexisting partnership, why does it look like Nike or Apple are attempting to distance themselves from each other?

Only recently has the Nano had the ability to track steps using an accelerometer without the additional nike+ shoe device. This, however, was not a marketed feature of the Nano, but instead, an added feature through firmware update. Then, not too long after that, Nike introduces a device that doesn't rely on the shoe dongles either, the FuelBand. Is it possible the dongles were Nike's tether to a popular Apple product and without it, Nike could suffer? If this was the case then two things would secure Nike profits, having it's own device that utilized accelerometer tracking like the Nano, and "NikeFuel."

"NikeFuel" in my opinion is what is going to make or break the Apple/Nike relationship. Baised off of Nike's explanation of it, any health device should have the ability to display Nikefuel, it's a matter of taking pedometer readings and displaying results using a different formula, Nike's formula. If it catches on then it could become the new "currency" of health and fitness.

Think about it, Nike has already announced sensor equipped shoes, and they will no doubt utilize NikeFuel to decrease on confusion between products. Anything that doesn't use NikeFuel, including the Nano, will end up taking a back seat as Nike pushes it's line of devices forward. A win for Nike, (kinda.) After all, they stand to make more off of $149 Fuelbands then they do off iPod Nanos that no longer need Nike's $19 sensors.

Of course this is nothing more than speculation. But until I see iPods displaying NikeFuel, then i'm inclined to believe that there's more to this FuelBand/NikeFuel fad than meets the eye...
Seriously, how hard would it be for Nano's to show this?

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

The Nike Fuelband Quick Rant...

Yeah I'm gonna sit here and rant for a minute...

If you plan to release a high demand item then make sure your site can handle the traffic!!! I was on paypal confirmation at 5:01pm and what do I see after final confirmation? "SOLD OUT!" How many of these things did you make? Fifty?! Fabricated shortages went out of style with Nintendo Wii's and Apple products. I hope you realize that people are not buying Fuelbands for their unique innovation. It's for the name! In no way do i think that's a bad thing.

But it really goes on to say a bit more about a company that really doesn't care about the individual consumer. In my opinion they really made no effort to do anything aside from make money.

Lets use the Nintendo Wii as a example:
It was ridiculously overhyped and  made in limited quantities, which in the long run, probably helped sell more than originally expected. Yes, people were vary upset at availability but Nintendo gave the impression that they did what they could. They released production numbers, something Nike didn't do. They also released the Wii from as many online and retail locations as they could, (or so they say.) In the end, if you missed out on a preorder or a restock you could end up feeling as though you just didn't try hard enough, not that the odds were unfairly stacked against you. Nike, on the other hand, relied on twitter links, use of the term "short supply", and a website infrastructure that can't handle more than 5 people at a time. Everyone that was able to get one of these fuel bands today should also go out and buy a lotto scratch off because your on fire.

Why am I wasting time with this angry rant? Because this is exactly what Nike wanted. They wanted people mad and angry. Angry people are vocal, vocal people stir interest, interest creates buyers, buyers make them more $$$$$. After they get their fill of ego inflation for creating another product that "sold out" in seconds, then they will open that warehouse door, start filling orders, and all of a sudden, people won't be so angry anymore.

So I say let's just get the ball rolling...


Now restock so the rest of us can #MakeItCount...

But you know what would be real funny? If Apple decided to make a similar device, (yeah I know it wouldn't happen because Nike and Apple are already sleeping in the same bed,) but the thought of an even more overhyped company blowing them out the water for dragging their feet on restocking would probably make a few of us smile right now...

Update - 7:00pm
Just received this twitter response:
"We appreciate you reaching out to us. Just to let you know, we encourage you to follow @NikeStore for updates and assure you that we will be the Nike+ FuelBand inventory regularly."
Whether this is a auto reply to anyone who tweets about their frustration or a direct reply to my blog is currently unknown, (my money goes to auto reply.) Lets see what their definition of "regularly" is...

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

DV Test Collection 1: Ike and Tina

Your in for a treat. Season 2 of "DV Tries" is still in production but with a little free time, instead of relaxing, I'm getting better acquainted with the new updates to Final Cut Pro X.

Now that multi cam support is finally introduced into FCPX, it's time to put it to the test.
Enjoy the final results!

In the end, the multi cam implementation is excellent. This clip used synchronization based on audio and I think it couldn't have been better. Two completely different cameras were used and you start to see slight differences on the auxiliary view due to the fact that the Nikon D90 maxes out at 720p while my regular camera can record at 1080p. The resident color matching features were also put to the test and differences can be seen, so my suggestion to anyone that plans on using multi cam setups, is to do as much color correction before recording instead of in post. Of course maybe that's just a tip for amateurs like me...

(As a side note this video was attempt number 7 at doing a simplified multi cam setup for the past 4 years. With its "success" I'm ready for an even larger test with a lot more details to follow but volunteers will be needed. Don't call me, i'll call you...)

Wanna see more? I'll see what I can do... See ya next blog!!