The Ghost Pacer: race against an augmented reality running partner

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The Ghost Pacer are augmented reality specs that aim to help you top your personal bests by projecting a holographic opponent in your field of vision.

Essential readingTop fitness trackers and health gadgets

Have you ever played a computer driving game which overlays a “ghost car” that mimics your personal best. It’s a great way to know where you stand at each point in the race. But what if the same was applied in the real world to running.

I am an avid runner and have trained this year for the Paris Marathon. Like so many other events, it was postponed (twice) but I have continued to train in the hope of attending next year. These days instead of focusing on distance I am trying to improve on my personal bests. This is why this gadget piqued my interest.

It is launching via a Kickstarter campaign. The company describes it as the “world’s first set of mixed-reality glasses which projects a hologram you can race against outdoors in real time!”

Now how awesome is that?! A virtual workout partner that is always there giving you an extra edge and further motivation. After all, studies have shown that running with someone improves the quality of your run.

The futuristic looking, splash and dust resistant specs are extremely lightweight. Coming in at only 90 grams they certainly won’t slow you down! The glasses measure 10mm in thickness and have a 30 degree AR field of view. Battery life is around 6 hours on a single charge.

The cool thing, of course, is the avatar. Select the route, the target pace and you are ready to race. The avatar will be running in front of you if you are behind your pace, and behind you if you are doing well. It’s a simple but brilliant concept. Best of all, you still have a clear view of the world around you so your safety is not compromised.

The Ghost Pacer app integrates with Strava and its huge library of routes. The app will even customise workouts for you. What’s more, the specs will be compatible with over 60 smartwatches from Garmin, Polar and others to tap into heart rate readings. The avatar will then change its pace in real-time to ensure you stay in the optimal heart rate zone.

One can imagine this concept being taken forward a bit more. Perhaps the second generation might project a reading of your heart rate, lap times, pace and more in front of you. But that’s just my wishlist.

The Ghost Pacer glasses can be pre-ordered now on Kickstarter at 43% off their final discount price. That’s the good news. The bad news is that delivery to backers is expected a year from now.

Price: $199 and up

Funding open:

$84,261 raised out of $25,000 goal
23 days left

Estimated delivery: July 2021

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Marko Maslakovic

Marko founded Gadgets & Wearables in 2014, having worked for more than 15 years in the City of London’s financial district. Since then, he has led the company’s charge to become a leading information source on health and fitness gadgets and wearables.

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