It seems as though the highly criticized ski industry world whom is known for being stodgy and resilient to change has jumped on the technology band wagon. With the release of Epic Mix, the mountain side version of Nike + is intriguing on various levels to both mountain riders and techies alike. This application possesses the potential to push not just the sport of skiing but all participation sports in general to new technological frontiers.
So… what is so EPIC about this Mix, and why would i honestly need another application? Well for starters this mix, accessible online or via your mobile phone is enabled by chips embedded into both lift tickets and season passes. Activated by RF scanners installed at each lift of Vail’s five mountain resorts: Vail Beaver Creek , Breckenridge, Keystone and Heavenly. The system will automatically track data from each skier’s rides, including vertical feet skied and days on the mountain. Even offering updates on weather reports, trail condition, resort info, as well as traffic info. Digital pins will be given to guests for special achievements (gotta love a challenge) and tracking all your progress or regression from your mobile phone and can be shared via social media updates. Your community experience will offer up location-based social media, similar to applications like FourSquare or Gowalla and don’t think for a second Facebook and twitter didn’t jump on this band wagon aka stalk your friends and check out which bro is on your slope.
Also in the works is a special site for young skiers featuring content specially tailored to skiers under 14. Parents will be able to use the site to track their kids’ lift rides in real-time, no more leashes (now that deserves a cheer!).
The officially launch date is November 5 at Keystone, sign up before then (no additional cost after purchase of a season pass or reg lift ticket) and your first scan on the mountain will jump-start stating up your season.
Oh technology, your just so darn innovative!