Rip Curl partners up with Rackspace to deliver surfing wearable tech

This goes a bit beyond waterproof watches for deep sea divers: Aussie surf brand Rip Curl, in association with Rackspace, has created the first piece of surf-friendly wearable technology with the Rip Curl Search GPS Watch.

The watch captures data from a surfer’s session, gauging wave count, distances between rides and sessions, as well as top speed.

The technology which underpins Rip Curl Search GPS is Rackspace’s database as a service ObjectRocket, which utilises the power of the cloud as users can scale up and down dependent on their needs.

Shane Helm, global chairman of the watches and equipment division at Rip Curl, said: “The capture and subsequent analysis of surf data presents endless possibilities and opportunities for us. We can offer improvements to the surfing community, as well as help refine our own offering to surfers.

“ObjectRocket allows us to scale based on our demand whenever we need to,” he added. “If demand peaks or falls for the service at different times of the year, we have a solution that will automatically adjust with us and is managed by experts.”

The ‘managed by experts’ point is a well-founded one, as Rackspace has been recently advocating its Managed Cloud business model, whereby users can decide whether they want partial access to running their accounts, or whether to have Rackspace manage the whole thing for them.

Rackspace also released survey data results showing the impact of wearable technology:

  • One in five (21%) UK consumers of working age are using some form of wearable tech
  • More than half (56%) of those will use their technology for health and fitness purposes
  • 14% of UK adults are planning to buy products such as the Fitbit, Nike+ Fuelband and Jawbone UP
  • Companies are put off wearable tech projects because of securing employee data (59%), as well as the impact on IT workload (52%)

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