Phil Nickinson

So Mobile Nations Fitness Month is in full swing, for better or worse. Better, because some of us need any help we can get to get off our asses and exercise, even just a little. Worse, because often is a pretty busy month for us, and 2013 has been no exception. I'm trying a Nike Fuel Band this year. The gamification is OK (reaching your Fuel Points goal is fine, I guess), but the bracelet is just plain rigid and uncomfortable. And at $160, it's expensive for what it does. Plus, no Android app, which is lame. 

I spent a couple days last week in San Francisco. Travel days are tough for getting any actual exercise. Up too early to catch a transcon flight, and arrive too late get any real walking in. (Of course, that's me making more excuses.) Being on the west coast usually means waking up a couple hours early, and this trip was no exception. So I fired up Ingress and went for a walk at 5:30 a.m. San Francisco is really nice that early in the morning. Plenty of city noise, but not crazy like New York. It also was my first time really playing Ingress in a metro area -- and that makes all the difference in the world. That is, until I discovered there was a Level 8 of the other faction nearby who quickly undid the portals I'd claimed. Such is life for a lowly Level 3.

But it did get me out and walking, and helped me meet my Fuel Band goal for that day. So it's better than nothing. I'll be interesting to see just how much walking I end up doing at Mobile World Congress at the end of the month.

And now, a few more thoughts on the week that was ...

  • We're two weeks out from Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. We'll have a bigger preview next week, but things are shaping up nicely for LG, Sony, Huawei and ASUS, plus Mozilla and Samsung. It'll be weird not having a big HTC event. And it'll be weird not seeing that awesome Google expo. (In years past it's taken up much of an entire hall.) But I think there's going to be more enough going on at the new Fira to keep us all occupied.
  • Piracy, it appears, remains alive and well. Don't steal apps.
  • I'm in the camp of people who believe The Weather Channel shouldn't be naming winter storms. It's great for hashtags and directing coverage back to TWC. But "Nemo" belies the seriousness of weather events. Hope everyone in the Northeast got through it OK.
  • The Walking Dead is back on tonight. That is all.
  • Some good responses from Windows Phone's Joe Belfiore about tweeting from a Galaxy S3. I like it when execs have no problem saying they use the competition's products. It cuts through the corporate bullshit and ultimately makes for a better product. Kudos to Joe.

That'll do it for this week. Lots of good stuff ahead, folks.


Reader comments

From the Editor's Desk: Fitness month in full swing


The Nike fuel band is cool and all but I think it is too expensive for what it does. My mom actually uses something called a Fitbit. It's very similar to the fuelband except it is less expensive and much more functional. There is an android/iphone app you can download to track your progress among other things. I suggest to everyone to take a serious look at fitbit if you are considering purchasing a nike fuelband. You can find them at

Not to sound all fanboyish, but Phil how can you support Nikes Fuel Band when they don't have a Android app?
It rubs me when companies (especially large ones like Nike) live under the assumption that everyone uses an ios device.
It's 2013, and market share what it is these days should show these companies that there's more than a one kind of device out there in the hands of potential customers.
Good luck selling a $200 'bracelet' when you ignore a large part of your target consumer.

Also-The Walking Dead season 3 marathon starts in 45mins so I'll be burning my calories from my recliner the remainder of the day.

Yah, whoever it was at the Weather Channel that decided to name winter storms should be fired! Nothing but a lame marketing move. I can see naming hurricanes due to their immense destructive potential, but winter storms? I grew up in Minnesota and lived ten years in S. Florida, and even the worst winter storm doesn't compare to a nasty hurricane such as Wilma (that I experienced first hand). I have little respect for the Weather Channel anymore and instead go to trusted online weather resources such as Weather Underground.

As to Fitness month, it's so much more about a lifestyle change than one month out of the year. One month may get some started, but don't fool yourself. It's a constant battle of calories in versus calories burned on a daily basis. The key I've found is moderation. Control your intake overall, exercise as needed, but at the same time don't deny yourself the foods and drink you love or you're doomed to fail. Just keep everything well within moderation. Don't go overboard either way. :)