Helping people improve their health with more effective workouts has made Precor the fitness equipment leader. Precor takes a step up with its innovative Qt-enabled console.
Qt Goes to the Gym with Precor and ICS
Want to know what the next generation of workout equipment will feature? Ask Precor. Since 1980, Precor has set the standard for continuous innovation. In 1982, it was the first fitness equipment maker to add motivational microprocessor-based electronics, providing continuous feedback and enhanced workout effectiveness. In 1995, it introduced the first Elliptical Fitness Crosstrainer™ (EFX®). And in 2007, Precor released the revolutionary Adaptive Motion Trainer® (AMT®), breakthrough cardio equipment that constantly and fluidly adapts to stride length and motion.
To continue its tradition for innovation, Precor envisioned its next generation of Experience™ Series cardio equipment, featuring a Qt-enabled, high-end interactive touchscreen console. Working with its technology partner, Integrated Computer Solutions, Inc. (ICS), Precor aims to give users and health club owners unprecedented flexibility and control over both the machine itself and its integrated entertainment options, including HDTV.
Precor wanted users to be able to touch, swipe and scroll just like they would to navigate a smart phone, iPad® or tablet to select workouts, personalize workouts, view a variety of workout statistics, select which workout metrics to display, select languages, switch between TV channels, and accomplish other tasks. This intuitive interface is intended to help exercisers get the most out of the equipment and tailor workouts for themselves. The new consoles also were required to be network-enabled so that both Precor and club management can monitor the usage of each machine and remotely upgrade software to keep the equipment in top shape.
Such capabilities represent a significant advance in fitness equipment, says Software Engineering Manager Robert Seaman, who led the new console’s software development team. “Our existing fitness equipment had LED user interfaces for managing the workout, and a separate monitor for television. What we were looking for in the new product were more advanced media features integrated into a touch screen interface. For example we can now have a video source, such as a training video, running in the background while an application is drawing a menu in the foreground. It’s a much more integrated experience.”
Achieving that experience posed significant technical challenges. For help, Precor selected ICS as its implementation and training partner, and chose Qt as its technology platform.