Nike and TomTom combine to produce GPS sports watch

Nike and TomTom are to release a sports watch with a touchscreen display and integrated GPS, available from April 2011 onwards.

The touchscreen display is intended to make it easy for runners to check their progress en-route, while TomTom's GPS system can track and map each run.

The watch combines traditional timer features with personal bests and a nag feature to get runners pounding the ground, as well as a handy USB port that lets users upload run data to the Nike+ network for sharing and comparison.

It can also link up with a Nike+ Sensor attached to a running shoe, or a compatible heart-rate monitor for more detailed readouts.

Rival fitness brand Adidas has been involved in something of a turf war with Nike over fitness gadgets, countering early Nike+ success with the miCoach suite of devices, which were more expensive but included a heart-rate monitor from the get-go.

Adidas also matched Nike's paid iPhone app, which had GPS functionality, with a free miCoach equivalent designed to attract athletes to the miCoach scheme.

Nike has yet to name a price for the SportWatch GPS.

The device was on display at January's Consumer Electronics Show 2011 in Las Vegas, picking up honors in two Innovation Award categories.

One was in the Personal Electronics category, in which GPS technology was something of a theme. Among fellow nominees were the Garmin Earthmate PN-60w and Nuvi 3790T gadgets, the Casio Pathfinder Triple Sensor watch, and one of two overall winners in the Recon Transcend GPS alpine goggles.

The SportWatch's other category was Health & Wellness, which also honored the MyTrek iPhone-compatible heart monitor, the ErgoMotion keyboard, and a wealth of hearing aid innovations, won by the Etymotic Electronic BlastPLG Earplugs.

See more on the Nike+ SportWatch GPS at http://www.nikerunning.com.

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