Brands dial in to fast-expanding apps market

With more than 300,000 apps in existence today, outdoor, fitness and wintersports brands are recognizing the influence and breadth of mobile devices and increasingly throwing their hats in the ever-growing apps ring.
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With more than 300,000 apps in existence today, outdoor, fitness and wintersports brands are recognizing the influence and breadth of mobile devices and increasingly throwing their hats in the ever-growing apps ring.

“Mobile phones allow us to interact with the customer in a richer way than any other medium,” Michael Wehrmeyer, Mammut Sports Group’s web content manager, told SNEWS®.

Designed to be functional and of value to customers, manufacturers tell us there is a clear marketing benefit and strategy behind their app efforts.

“Our customers are increasing their use of digital and social platforms,” said Linda Reese, Columbia Sportswear’s marketing communications director, “and we’ve found mobile applications are a great way to engage with this audience in an informative and interactive way.”

Wehrmeyer added, “Taking the phone-sensing abilities, its permanent availability and how personal of an item it is, we believe it is fundamental to build and maintain customer relationships in the future (through apps).”

“Today, Internet content is shaping the workout experience and new technology, like apps, further enhances a fitness program,” said Chris Clawson, president of Life Fitness, in a statement about the app’s pending release. “This smartphone app will support our users by allowing them to maximize their workouts on our equipment.”

State park guides…workout analysis…scat identification—yup, there’s even an app for that. Consider suggesting these handy apps to your active and roaming customers:

>> Elevation Pro 2.2: Precognitive Research LLC brings worldwide USGS elevation to your fingertips.

>> Life Fitness Virtual Trainer: Enables exercisers to update workout results, tracking progress and recording cardio and strength results.

>> Map apps: Download, store and view USGS maps from Topo Maps, Topos2Go, iTopo Maps and EarthRover.

>> FalconGuides’ Scats and Tracks, Backyard Edition: A field guide to the signs of common critters, including scat characteristics.

>> Safety App: Prep for trips with Mammut’s risk assessment system that analyzes level of danger, exposure and slope angle, as well as an SOS button to send location coordinates, clinometer, compass and altimeter.

>> Magellan RoadMate, North America: The latest full GPS app to hit the iPhone.

>> Music Interval Training Tool: Countdown timer designed for interval training that can be customized with high and low intensity playlists.

>> Knot App: A guide to 70 must-know knots in six categories from Columbia Sportswear.

>> Pocket CPR: Targeted for CPR-trained personnel and students learning to practice, this free app from Zoll Medical Corp. could prove handy to backcountry enthusiasts.

>> Phone Aid: A reference app that gives information for first-aid emergencies from Entake for $1.99.

>> Park Maps: GPS-enabled maps of more than 250 U.S. national parks, monuments and recreational areas from Big Air Software.

>> miCoach: adidas offers specific training programs for six different sports with audible coaching, and also allows users to track and analyze performance.

>> Army Survival Guide: The U.S. Army’s authoritative field manual.

>> Trailhead: Powered by EveryTrail.com, The North Face’s Trailhead finds trails, hikes and bike routes based on location, tracking route, distance, speed and elevation in real-time.

>> Packing List: Mammut’s app helps plan a trip through packing list compilation that can be shared with friends so nothing is left behind.

>> Coleman Lantern: Turns your iPhone into a glowing lantern.

>> Take Ten: Columbia Sportswear’s app offers gear list suggestions from outdoor experts, ways to develop and share a trip plan via email or Facebook, and access to safety tips and how-to articles.

If your company has an app, add it to the list by joining the Chat below. And be sure to let us know as you develop and release apps.

—Wendy Geister and Stuart Glascock

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