Sunday, November 02, 2014

Running Buddy Sync

Running for many is a social event. 

My wife and I have been running together a couple times a week for the last 5 years. When we got our first iPhone, Nike+ Running was one of the first apps we downloaded. We have used it on almost every run since.

Nike understands the social element of running, integrating many features that encourage and inspire you. But these feature all connect you to people who you are not physically running with.

What about the people you are running with in person? Each runner need not carry their own device to log the data.

I propose a "Running Buddy Sync" feature that allows you to pair your account with any of your friends. After a run has completed, during the post-run data collection sheet (how you felt, type of run, running pace map...) you are also presented an option to add any Running Buddies. Once selected the run data will be pushed to each of their respective Nike+ accounts automatically.

This would make the Nike+ platform more sticky because runners would be incentivized to promote the app to their friends. And at least in my case it would be the difference between having 1 Nike+ account that we share to log our workouts together, and 2 active accounts.

I have been pondering this feature for the last 6 months, but I feel it is evening more pressing with the advent of comprehensive health tracking in iOS8. I have enjoyed the ease with which I'm able to get a high level overview of my fitness and sleep patterns.

It's increasingly frustrating when there is useful data being collected but isn't being used to it's fullest potential.