Apple launches new GymKit certification app to spur adoption and improve stability

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Apple’s GymKit platform for pairing your Apple Watch to gym equipment has slowly expanded since it first launched in 2017. It’s been a gradual process and one that has happened without much fanfare. Now, in hopes of luring more equipment makers to add GymKit support, Apple has launched a new GymKit Certification Assistant app to streamline the approval process.

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The new GymKit Certification Assistant app was added to the App Store today, according to 9to5Mac sources. The app is being distributed under Apple’s developer account, but it’s currently unlisted. This means you can’t find it in the App Store via search or by visiting Apple’s account page. Instead, it’s only accessible via a direct link.

Apple’s description for the new app is short and sweet:

For use by MFi Licensees only. Use the GymKit Certification Assistant to test pairing, connection, and additional key requirements for fitness equipment you developed to incorporate GymKit technology.

The app is meant for equipment makers to test how their products work with the GymKit platform. The app walks companies through the process of testing NFC connectivity, the accuracy of the data, and ensuring that information displayed to users is correct.

It’s likely that Apple was privately distributing this app to its GymKit partners in the past. Adding the app to the App Store makes this process easier and could signal that Apple is looking to ramp up the speed at which new GymKit products are launched.

Additionally, the app can help equipment companies troubleshoot bugs with their GymKit integration after they launch the feature. The companies can see specific and detailed information about Bluetooth and NFC connectivity to help track down why certain features aren’t working as expected.

9to5Mac’s Take

Whether or not this new GymKit Certification Assistant app actually leads to any sort of broader GymKit adoption is up in the air. My hope is that it does, as GymKit availability is still pretty rare right now.

As a refresher, GymKit is Apple’s platform that allows users to pair their Apple Watch to gym machines such as treadmills, ellipticals, stair steppers, and more. The metrics between the Apple Watch and gym machine are shared, combining data from the machine with details like heart rate and calorie burn from the watch.

The idea is that the combination of this leads to more accurate fitness tracking for Apple Watch users. It also streamlines the process of stopping, starting, and pausing workouts on both ends of the process as well.

How often do you use a piece of gym equipment that supports GymKit integration? Is the platform stable and reliable for you? Let us know down in the comments.

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Author: Subham

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