Going to the gym should inspire you to shed the pounds, but when you're surrounded by near-dead, sweating chubsters (or equally-disconcerting 'roided bodybuilders) it can all get a bit disheartening. Mio hopes its new Mio Link fitness band will put a spring back into your treadmill stride, by pairing with an app that will let you virtually run courses from around the globe.
The Mio Link itself is just a simple heart-rate monitor, a rubber strap with a sensor that picks up your pulse on the underside. Good to go for ten hours from a single charge, it will pair with the Mio Go smartphone app over Bluetooth. Together, the pair can measure speed and distance, but it's the Mio Go app's video content that makes it an interesting proposition. 70 full courses around the globe, including the Tour de France cycling championship, have been recorded in their entirety, with the video syncing to the exertion you're putting into your exercise. Take a leisurely stroll and the video will crawl from checkpoint to checkpoint, but put more effort in (say, on an exercise bike) and it'll speed along. Placed in front of a static workout station, it'll give a genuine sense of progression to your workouts.
The Link also includes ANT+ technology, allowing it to share data with a number of other sports devices, such as Garmin's sports watches.
Launching in April for $99 (£60), Mio is hoping the Link will be seen as a credible replacement for bulky chest straps which offer similar functionality.