MotoACTV: Motorola’s Fitness-Focused Nano Twin

By Andrew Liszewski on at

Motorola has just unveiled their new MotoACTV, a compact fitness monitoring MP3 player that tracks your performance, heartrate and even provides motivation through song selection and an audible fitness coach.

At first glance it's hard to distinguish the MotoACTV from Apple's touchscreen-equipped iPod Nano. But despite the similar form factor, Motorola's compact media player packs a lot more features when it comes to keeping fit and active. It matches the Nano with a capacitive 1.6-inch touchscreen display upgraded with Gorilla Glass, that automatically adjusts for indoor or outdoor lighting conditions. And it's further protected from extreme physical activities with a sweatproof and scratchproof housing.

Because keeping tabs of your performance is an important part of an effective fitness regime, the MotoACTV also counts your steps and how far you've run using their Motorola AccuSense GPS technology. Calories burned and even your heartrate is monitored through the use of a couple of new sport headphones, the wireless Bluetooth Motorola SF700 ($149 or about £100) and the wired Motorola SF500 ($99 or about £65), instead of a chest strap. But it also supports ANT+ if existing fitness accessories are already part of your routine. And while it lacks phone functionality, like Sony's LiveView the ACTV can stay connected to your Android smartphone over Bluetooth for remotely monitoring incoming calls and text messages.

On the surface it seems like just another minuscule MP3 player with some fitness features tacked on. But over time the MotoACTV uses the data it collects on your performance to actually create custom playlists to help keep you motivated. We all have a favorite song that really gets our hearts pumping, and the ACTV will remember what it was for your next run, helping you to push through the times when you feel less motivated. But if you feel that more variety and annoying DJ banter are better suited for your morning jog, a built-in FM radio will let you train while enjoying the top 40. At the end of a workout your stats can even be syned to your PC and uploaded to the MotoACTV portal for analysis through graphs, charts and other tools.

With all of that functionality and stat tracking the battery life for the MotoACTV is pegged at around five hours for outdoor workouts where GPS is heavily utilized. While indoors it should be good for up to ten hours, with around two weeks of standby. Available nation wide in the US on November 6th in an 8GB version for $249 (about £160), and a 16GB version for $299 (about £190). [MotoACTV]