This year is shaping up to be a good one for health-related gadgets, thanks to the new Bluetooth 4.0 specification and profiles. The $79 Wahoo Blue HR is among the first of these devices to take advantage of this low-powered wireless capability, and I took it for a 5-mile test run. There’s no need to charge the heart-rate monitor because it runs on a fairly standard watch battery that should last for at least a year.
It’s great to see my heart-rate data after a run, but even more important to see it during a training session. The Wahoo Blue HR works with a number of apps, including a free native app. For now, you can only use this monitor with the iPhone 4S(s aapl) because most handsets aren’t yet using Bluetooth 4.0. That should change during 2012, however. And I foresee uses other than exercise tracking for these types of gadgets. Imagine doctors that can remotely monitor the pulse of their patients after a procedure or upon starting a new medication.
For now I’ll just be using the Wahoo Blue HR during my road race and track-and-field training. At least until I get older and out of shape, that is; at that point, I’ll hope my doctor actually can monitor my health from afar!