Since the early 2000s, performance gadgets have become standard fare in cycling and running, thanks to satellite technologies such as GPS. Yet for the sport of swimming, things have progressed far slower.
Most pool swimmers still rely on a trusty wall clock to keep an eye on times in training, which is of little use for pacing an effort... enter Form Swim, a pair of goggles with a smart integrated display that tells you how far you’re swimming, your pace and plenty more thanks to a built-in accelerometer.
CEO Dan Eisenhardt previously worked on the Recon Jet smart cycling sunglasses, but as a former pro swimmer his passion is for the water. Years of development have resulted in what we think is a very polished product. A carry case with five nose pieces comes in the box with a charging cable. To get started you connect to the Form Swim app, which also acts as a social hub where you can make virtual friends and check in on their sessions; you can also sync swims with Strava and TrainingPeaks.
Pool size and swim workouts can be set on the goggles with the chipset buttons. The augmented reality display is basic, but doesn’t really need to be anything other than clear and visible. Underwater the display was angled towards the bottom of the pool, and at first we weren’t confident with others in the lane, but a couple of swims in and we got used to having the display there.
The automatic pause for intervals is a world away from having to constantly press a watch, and is genuinely as convenient as timing off a wall clock. Two metrics appear at once on screen and you can scroll through more data at the end of a set. The tracking is never anything less than 100% accurate, in both 25m and 50m pools. They’re not recommended for open water, but there is a custom distance option if your pool isn’t a standard size.
Putting the tech aside, the build quality is easily among the best we’ve seen (they need to be at that price!), and worth noting is the lenses aren’t replaceable. Form are so confident they will last they offer a one year guarantee, the only goggle manufacturer to do so.
There are things we anticipate will change and improve with future generations – such as the display quality, size of the chipset, new metrics (swimming power, anyone?) and potential open-water functionality – but unlike many fledgling tech products, the Form Swim goggles appear to be a finished article at the first time of asking. The future is smart for swimming, and so far Form are leading the way.
Verdict: One of the most promising pieces of swim tech in years; plus quality lenses 90%
Buy from www.formswim.com