Beach apparel might not be the only thing you’ll regularly see surfers wearing this summer. If you don’t immediately connect electronics and water, continue reading. It will change your perspective and your entire surf experience—whether you’re a surfer or spectator.
If you keep up with tech trends, you know that wearable tech is en vogue these days, especially in sports. We’ve seen tech create vast advancements in running and biking ever since the inclusion of portable heart rate monitors. The giant of tech—Apple itself—has been hooked up with Nike for years to bring us the Nike+ App for running. Of course, this was eons ago by now, and it seems the world of surfing has started to catch wind, or wave of this technology, and just in time for some innovative platforms.
The challenges of creating durable tech in water hasn’t stopped Mikel Alonso of GlassyPro. Alonso created the GlassyPro One Smartwatch to give surfers a better experience both pre and post surf, as well as out on the water. Equipped with an accelerometer, a three-axis gyroscope, and a built-in GPS, this wearable tech serves multiple purposes: Find new surf spots (over 6,000 with new locations reported everyday) and check the forecast for anything including wind and swell conditions and directions, wave period, air and water temperatures, and much more. Perhaps the most appealing feature of this watch is its ability to track your surf sessions and ride duration, which is clutch for those wanting to check their progressions. Add to all this the fact that you can connect to and share with surf buddies, and you’ve found the greatest combination of social media and tech tracking imaginable in GlassyPro.
Technology has improved the experience of surf fans and spectators as well. Drones and GoPros provide enthusiasts the opportunity to get right in the experiential mix with their favorite surfers. Where helicopters with cameras used to provide a very loud and sometimes dangerous option to achieve a similar sense of proximity, these tools do it better and with less distraction. Samsung is also reported to be coming out with new wearable technology for surfers that, in addition to capturing their experience on film, can also track similar data to GlassyPro to give surfers scores and instant analysis of their rides.
The forecast calls for more of this tech tide to keep coming in. This is most likely just the beginning. Fans should be on the lookout for much more in tech and surf in the next few months. According to a CNBC interview with Paul Speaker, CEO of the Association of Surfing Professionals, “Our goal is to get as close to the experience the surfer is having…[which] means more point-of-view cameras, whether by land, sea or air.”
The reported 120 million surfing fans globally ought to appreciate that.