Gadgets piq-robot

Published on March 20th, 2017 | by Greg


Cutting Edge Tech On The Ski Slopes With The PIQ Robot

Sometimes, it seems like everything in the world is becoming connected- with more and more smart devices, sometimes it can be nice to escape, to head for the mountains. When we get a chance, and conditions are reasonable, we like to retreat to the slopes and find a nice, quiet place to clear our head and enjoy the powder. But it turns out that even in the most remote areas, technology has made a major impact- and it also is clear that there are plenty of great ways to put it to use.

The PIQ Robot (with help from Rossignol), is a sophisticated set of sensors that slip onto an ankle bracelet, pair to your phone, and use an app to help give you access to a whole lot of data about your skills. Measurements include everything from speed to more unusual metrics like carve angle, transition time, G-forces, and even things like jump height and air time. Thanks to some late snow- like last week’s storm- we were able to test our PIQ thoroughly, with a focus on intermediate rather than professional use.

We’ve seen plenty of other nifty snow gear recently- from helmets to fog-free goggles- and even other sports trackers. The PIQ is cute, compact, and light enough that you’ll barely notice it, and it’s waterproof, NFC-capable, and offers up to six hours of battery life. Like most systems, there are some fun social aspects like leaderboards to help boost the competitive side, helpful even if some of the numbers can feel disconnected from your actual performance. Unlike most others, you can use the base PIQ sensor package with a pretty wide variety of accessories, from golf and tennis to boxing and even kiteboarding.

The free app is available for both iOS/iPhone as well as Android, but it’s important to note that info isn’t available in real-time, but instead transferred and synchronized in sessions. This is fine- we’re not using our phones during runs- but slightly more limiting is the lack of mapping. The PIQ does seem perfect for racers and more serious competitors, and some of the coaching tips are interesting, but it can be difficult to put them into context other than multi-run comparisons against yourself or others around the same time. Still, it held up well over some rough environments, and more data is an excellent first step to improvement for skiers of any level. Available now online and in stores for around $199, the PIQ Robot is the most advanced analytics solution for skiing, and the fact you can use it with other pursuits is just gravy.

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About the Author

Greg dreamed up the idea for the Truly Network while living in Hawaii, which began with a single site called TrulyObscure. In 2010, when advertisers and readers were requesting coverage beyond the scope of that site, TrulyNet was launched, reaching a broader audience over a variety of niche sites. Formerly the head technology correspondent for the Des Moines Register at age 16, he has since lived and worked in five states and two countries, helping a list of organizations and companies that includes the United States Census Bureau, TripAdvisor, Events Photo Group, Berlitz, and Computer Geeks. He also served as the Content Strategy Manager for HearPlanet, a multi-platform app that has reached over a million users and has been featured in the New York Times, Hemispheres Magazine, National Geographic Adventure, Fox Business News, PC Magazine, and even Apple’s own iPhone ads. Greg has written as a restaurant critic and feature journalist for a number of national and international publications, including City Weekend Magazine, Red Egg Magazine, the Newton Daily News, Capital Change Magazine, and an arm of China Daily, Beijing Weekend. In addition, he has served as a consulting editor for the Foreign Language Press of Beijing, as well as a writer and editor for the George Washington University Hatchet, the school newspaper of his alma mater. Originally from Iowa, Greg is currently living in the West Village of Manhattan.

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