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New Balance is launching a fitness-focused Android Wear watch

New Balance is launching a fitness-focused Android Wear watch

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Fitness company New Balance is releasing its first Android Wear watch, the RunIQ. In line with the brand, it's a running-focused smartwatch that the company is developing through partnerships with Intel (for hardware), Google (for software), and Strava (for run tracking). 

The RunIQ has a built-in GPS and heart rate monitor for tracking runs, and is waterproof up to 5ATM of pressure. New Balance is claiming up to five hours of battery life for the RunIQ while actively using the GPS, or up to 24 hours for what it terms “typical use.” However, while the RunIQ will be running Android Wear, it’s still unclear whether or not it will be running the upcoming 2.0 version of the smartwatch OS when it launches.

Strava is powering the fitness tracking side of the RunIQ, but the smartwatch will have its own online social network for sharing workouts and competing with friends, the New Balance Global Run Club. New Balance also will be offering real-world New Balance Run Club meetups in its stores, along with organized runs and classes for members. 

New Balance is also teaming up with wireless headphone maker Jabra for the PaceIQ sports earbuds, a companion product to the RunIQ. The PaceIQ headphones a pair of fitness-focused Bluetooth headphones designed to pair up with the RunIQ for playing back Google Play music directly from the smartwatch. They also offer a dedicated "Sports Button" to provide direct exercise feedback from the RunIQ.

The RunIQ will be available for preorder on January 4th for $299.99, while the PaceIQ headphones will cost $109.99. Both New Balance-branded products are set to ship on February 1st.