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Big Data in Practice by Bernard Marr

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29 FITBIT Big Data In The Personal Fitness Arena

Background

San Francisco-based firm Fitbit are the market leader in the connected fitness wearables market. Their devices act as fitness trackers, allowing users to track various metrics that help them lead a healthier – and more informed – life. The company sold almost 11 million devices in 2014.

What Problem Is Big Data Helping To Solve?

Fitbit bases their success on the notion that informed people make smarter lifestyle choices. As such, Fitbit’s devices encourage people to eat well and exercise more by helping them monitor and improve their habits. The wealth of data being gathered through Fitbit devices not only helps individuals become healthier but also has implications for employers, healthcare professionals and even insurance companies.

How Is Big Data Used In Practice?

Fitbit track the user’s activity, exercise, calorie intake and sleep. Users have access to real-time information about their habits, and the stats are synced (wirelessly and automatically) from the device to the user’s smartphone or computer. A dashboard allows users to track their progress (with helpful charts and graphs) and stay motivated.

Aria, Fitbit’s Wi-Fi smart scale, tracks user’s weight, body mass index (BMI), lean mass and body fat percentage. The scale is able to recognize up to eight individual users (so the whole family can use it) and keep their results separate and private. The stats are synced to the user’s home Wi-Fi network and ...

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