Apple Fitness Plus goes after Peloton with streaming workouts that sync with Apple Watch

Apple launches a new streaming fitness service with guided workouts just for Apple Watch wearers.

Sarah Mitroff Managing Editor
Sarah Mitroff is a Managing Editor for CNET, overseeing our health, fitness and wellness section. Throughout her career, she's written about mobile tech, consumer tech, business and startups for Wired, MacWorld, PCWorld, and VentureBeat.
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Sarah Mitroff
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Apple on Tuesday announced Apple Fitness Plus, a fitness streaming subscription that gives you guided workouts using the workout metrics from your Apple Watch. The service is similar to Peloton Digital and other fitness streaming services out there, but this is the first that's been built explicitly for the Apple Watch

Here's how it works: You pick any workout video from the Fitness Plus app on your iPad, iPhone or Apple TV and start it. Your Apple Watch syncs your heart rate, calories burned, pace and duration data to Fitness Plus. You can then see that data on whichever screen you're using to follow the workout. During some workouts, you'll get onscreen cues to ramp up your pace or heart rate to push yourself.

The service costs $9.99 (£9.99, AU$14.99) per month or $80 (£80, AU$120) per year, and will be available starting December 14. If you purchase a new Apple Watch, you'll get three months for free.

Watch this: Apple Fitness Plus: Workouts designed for the Apple Watch

Workouts on the Apple Watch have been available for several years now, but there was no guidance -- you either had to make up the workout on your own, or follow a workout video and check your wrist if you wanted to see your heart rate or pace. Now, you can search through many different types of guided workout videos, led by "world class" trainers, and see how hard you're working in real time.

At launch, Fitness Plus will have guided HIIT, yoga, cycling, dance, treadmill walking, treadmill running, dance, strength, core and rowing workouts. There are also mindful cool-down videos as well, to use after any workout. 

You can use any equipment for these workouts -- there's no need to sync or connect to smart fitness equipment, like a Peloton bike or the Mirror. Many workouts only require a set of dumbbells and there are also plenty that don't require any equipment at all. The videos are recorded in a new Fitness Plus studio, and Apple says you'll get new workout videos every week when the service launches.

You can also choose the music you want to use during your workout, and if you use Apple Music, you can sync those playlists, too.

The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or health objectives.