Gatorade is making moves to capture the fast growing FitBit market with new smart technology fitted to its bottles which it says will help people stay more efficiently hydrated.
The PepsiCo brand will reveal prototypes of the microchip-fitted “smart cap” bottle and sweat patch at the South by Southwest festival today (11 March) in a four-room interactive display.
Gatorade has been working on the technology which gives users constant updates on how much and when they should drink.
Gatorade is readying the technology for public sale having tested it for some time. During the development process it worked with the Brazilian national football team at the 2014 World Cup, and a new updated version of the tech has been used by other clubs like the Boston Celtics basketball team and FC Barcelona.
The disposable sweat patch tracks sodium loss on the forearm and communicates with the bottles’ lights which flash when the user should drink.
Xavi Cortadellas, innovation director at Gatorade said the patch “is basically a Band-Aid with electronics,” and added that pro-athlete tests will accelerate this summer ahead of the launch.
Development is still on going and the company told the WSJ that it plans to start selling the bottles next year or 2018.
In the meantime PepsiCo has confirmed plans to launch an organic version of Gatorade this year in a move intended to appeal to more health conscious consumers who are sold on less artificial looking colours and more all-natural ingredients.