Get your apps in shape with the Google Fit SDK
2014 is the year where we all take more care of our health. It's not necessarily out of choice, although it should be, but through reminders from the sensors built-in to our mobile devices and their subsequent operating systems alerting us that we should probably put down that donut and take the stairs instead of the lift.
Google announced their 'Fit SDK' at the company's I/O developer conference this year. Over the weekend, it entered preview stage and now provides many APIs for app developers and device manufacturers to store and access activity data from fitness apps and sensors on Android and other devices (like wearables, HR monitors, or connected scales).
The current release contains likely-final access to the Google Fit APIs for Android, but not the REST API or the APIs for Google's Android Wear wearable platform. These two significant parts of an SDK designed for fitness-tracking will be included in the final package. In this version, you will also be unable to publish your apps to Google Play but you can develop and test them in preparation.
Google Fit will be a centralised, OS-level record for Android users to keep track of their fitness recorded from in-built device sensors or third-party accessories. Applications can update these records and make them available to other applications to make use of. The preview SDK is made available for developers to see at an early-stage what they can do with this fitness history for things such as personalised coaching and health advice.
The SDK consists of three sets of APIs;
- Sensors - Gives high-level access to in-built and connected sensors so that your app can interact with them through the one API for necessary information / updates.
- Recording - Allows apps to register for a more battery-efficient and Cloud-synced background collection of fitness data.
- History - This API will be used for interactions with data including the usual read, insert, and delete actions.
In order to use the SDK you will need a modified version of the Android L Developer Preview which contains Google Fit support. This is only available for the Nexus 5 and Nexus 7 (2013) devices; which may not be ideal for all developers. If your devices are supported, use the Android SDK Manager to download the Google Play services client labelled “Google Play services for Fit Preview.”
Local fitness data can be used today, but the Cloud backend will be "available soon".
Do you plan on trying the Google Fit SDK? Let us know in the comments.