TomTom launches Spark fitness tracker with GPS and music capabilities

TomTom was one of the first to launch a GPS-enabled fitness tracker – but now the competition is hotting up

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The Independent Tech

TomTom has launched the Spark – its first fitness tracker focused on music, letting people store specially-curated playlists on the watch itself.

The company, which was one of the first to break into the wearable fitness tracker market, launched its most recent watch last year – since when companies including Apple have also attempted to break into the fledgling category. But TomTom hopes that its focus on music and a range of other features can help it push back into a market that has become far more competitive since it last launched a product into it.

Launching the watch at the IFA tradeshow in Berlin, TomTom said that it was the first multi-sport fitness watch that can combine heart rate monitoring, GPS tracking, activity and sleep tracking and built-in wireless music.

The fitness tracking allows the watch to track most indoor and outdoor fitness activities. That includes swimming, since the watch is water resistant up to 40-metres.

The company stressed the music aspect of the product – making reference to studies that have shown the huge increase in efficiency that comes with listening while working out. It is the first TomTom watch focused on music, allowing wearers to store files on the watch and so leave their phone at home.

Music can be added through iTunes or Windows Media Player. The company has also partnered with Ministry of Sound to offer a playlist of songs that come pre-installed with the watch.

TomTom said that the Spark is intended to be worn all day, rather than just during activities. It doesn’t yet support smartphone notifications, like other smartwatches, but the company said that an update would give the functionality by the end of 2015.

As well as its fitness capabilities, TomTom said that the watch can track sleep. It does so automatically, sensing when its wearer has gone to sleep without them pressing any buttons.

Pre-orders for the watch have already opened, with the watch costing €249 (£183). It will be available in shops from October.

It will come with a range of different sizes of wrist strap, and offer those straps in different colours.

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