Oral Roberts, University in Tulsa, Oklahoma, has adopted a new method for monitoring student health. In other words, he has efficiently decided to adopt wearable technology. This is for the first time that any educational institution has practiced the use of wearables on a new level.
As reported by Washington Post and, Oral Roberts has made it mandatory for every student to wear Fitbit throughout the school time. Fitbit, in other words, has been made part of the curriculum. There are around 900 freshmen who are supposed to wear the fitness monitors. The decision is not sudden; the school has been testing the band for few years before taking the decision of implementation.
A representative also revealed that only number of steps and heart rate information are needed to be reported to the school. The students are required to walk 10,000 steps every day and will be graded based on their weekly exercise routines. They are then logged in to the school’s computer as per the curriculum. The Fitbit HR which has been recommended by the school is easily capable of recording steps, sleep cycles, and movements etc. It costs $150, and the cost has been the only complaint the school has received so far.
Fitibit, recently faced a legal trouble and some law suits. The sales and the popularity have constantly declined since then. Fitbit not only faced complaints regarding inappropriate heart tracking but back in 2014 when the customers using the band complained of sever skin rashes. So, this change is much beneficial for the company. Recently, ORU also revealed to NBC News that the campus bookstores have already sold over around 550 of Fitbit devices. This is clearly a sign of Fitbit’s success in the midst of global downfall.
Research Company IDC reported that Fitbit’s market share in the global wearables market fell from 32.8% to 22.2% between the third quarters of 2014 and 2015. Moreover, Fitbit’s sales surged 255% in 2013 and 178% in 2014, but analysts expect that growth to slow to 144% in 2015 and rise just 33% in 2016. The sales are expected to decline more because of the Smartphones and watches now coming with fitness tracking features too.
The infusion of fitness trackers into the university curriculum is a good idea. However, there are no big chances that it is going to be a hit. Corporate Wellness programs and other such programs can handle the Fitbit sales situation much well.