Ghost Pacer produces a set of mixed-reality glasses designed specifically for runners. These glasses allow the user to set the path and speed of a holographic avatar and then race against it in real time. This company has created the lightest mixed-reality headset for outdoor use ever made, and runners can train with this piece of equipment to maximize the potential of their workouts.
As CEO AbdurRahmann Bhatti notes, runners are always going to reach a higher level of performance when they have someone (or something) to train with. As a former all-state cross-country runner, he understands the importance of having a running partner:
“Every serious runner and every serious coach will tell you that your performance is going to be better if you have a partner.”
Something else that is well-known within the running community is the “partner paradox.” This is the idea that the ideal partner is someone who’s slightly faster than you.
“The reason it’s a paradox is that if you’re training with the right person, they’re training with the wrong person,” explains AbdurRahmann Bhatti. With an understanding of this paradox, he was able to circumvent this issue with the Ghost Pacer. The built-in avatar always runs a bit faster than its user. In fact, runners can compete against their friends even when running separately. This is accomplished by downloading a friend’s previous run and racing against an avatar that matches the friend’s route and speed from the downloaded workout.
Initially, Ghost Pacer set out to create the software involved with a holographic running partner—and not the hardware responsible for this process. Typically, this type of hardware falls into two categories:
- Heads Up Displays (HUDs) – Typically lightweight headsets with small fields of view, and only capable of displaying basic information like numbers and statistics
- Mixed Reality Headsets – Heavy, bulky headsets capable of generating 3D holograms
The Ghost Pacer soon discovered that neither of these platforms was suitable for its vision. Management came to the conclusion that the only way forward was to build its own headset. As Mr. Bhatti explained, “The real innovation here is that we were building a mixed reality headset specifically for runners.”
Because Ghost Pacer wasn’t limited by the existing constraints of existing hardware, it was able to eliminate unnecessary components and features to build the lightest-ever headset for outdoor use. Management was also able to gear the entire headset towards runners with functionality and comfort in mind.
As Mr. Bhatti explained to Disruptive Nation, you can train with the Ghost Pacer any time, any place—and when you’re on your own. Runners can view a pacing mode that shows their live running stats just by momentarily focusing their eye; tilting their heads is unnecessary.
“Everybody has really busy schedules. Even if you do manage to find the right partner, setting up regular times and locations for workouts can be next to impossible.”
Ghost Pacer’s target market is immense, and running (especially solo) is only becoming more popular with the rise of Covid-19. This product could be attractive to the average runner, high-level athletes looking to shave milliseconds off their lap times, or virtually any runner who wants to get more out of each workout.
In just 45 minutes after its initial crowdfunding launch, Ghost Pacer reached its goal. As we go to press, the company has reached 300% of its funding goal.
If you want to learn more about Ghost Pacer, check them out on Kickstarter.
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