The day is coming when your personal trainer may be small enough to fit in your pocket -- and you won't be able to escape the nagging from a missed workout.
The Wellness Navigator, a prototype phone from Japan's NTT DoCoMo, can take your pulse, check your body fat, time your jogs and even tell you if you have bad breath. It will also be able to check out your stress level and inspire you with a pep talk.
Ye gawds, will it also tell you to wash your hands, brush your teeth and eat your spinach?
We assume it makes phone calls, too. According to DoCoMo, the mobile phone, developed with Mitsubishi Electric Corp. and unveiled earlier this month at the Ceatec electronics show outside Tokyo, targets users with busy lives who want a hassle-free way of keeping track of their health, the company has said.
The phone has a built-in motion sensor that detects body movement and calculates calories burned, whether you're walking, running, climbing stairs or resting. It also has a tiny hole on the side of the handset that users can blow into and find out if they have bad breath. Now THAT'S scary.
Feeling stressed? The phone asks a series of questions to assess stress levels, including "Do you feel lethargic?" and "Do you go to bed after midnight?" Then a message will appear on the screen gauging the user's stress level and offer a few peppy messages, like "Don't worry, tomorrow's a fresh new day. Keep your chin up!" We, of course, hope this feature could be turned off when a chirpy nag could cause a user to toss the phone out the window.
DoCoMo, Japan's largest mobile phone carrier, is also testing some of the phone's other technology, including a function to keep track of meals and calculate calorific intake, as well as a networking capacity to let users share data.
The company has yet to set a release date or price for the Wellness phone and has no immediate plans to sell it overseas.