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Zepp’s latest sports training sensor is for soccer players

Zepp started making training sensors for baseball, softball, golf and tennis in 2013. Now, with a few years of experience under its belt, the startup is ready to break into the world’s most popular sport, soccer (aka football). Today, Zepp announced a new sensor that lets soccer players track valuable stats from the pitch, such as distance covered, total number of ball kicks and how much time they ran, sprinted or walked throughout a game.

The small wearable device, which pairs with a smartphone via Bluetooth, fits inside a leg sleeve that’s part of the retail bundle. In fact, there are two sleeves included in the box, one small-medium size and a medium-large. Unlike its other sensors, Zepp says the Play Soccer version isn’t about the company helping you train with video tutorials or tips from professional athletes. Instead, you’re supposed to use the raw data from the sensor to determine what specific skills you need to improve — all on your own.

To make the experience more complete, the Zepp Play Soccer app (iOS and Android) has a “Team Game” mode that lets multiple sensors connect to the same activity. Here, individuals can look at each other’s stats, have leaderboards and, with help from someone outside the field, keep a score between teams. Zepp says this feature is also good for parents who can’t make it to their kid’s game, as it allows them to get real-time updates.

Once you get sent a link to view the event, for example, you can read who took a shot or scored a goal only seconds after it happened. And that worked as advertised during our demo. Additionally, Zepp’s application lets you record video of the player wearing the sensor, and uses whatever footage you capture to create a highlight reel based on data collected during a game or training session.

As a soccer player myself, the main concern is whether Zepp’s Play Soccer sensor will be comfortable to wear for long periods of time. While I haven’t tested it in an actual game yet, Zepp says it worked with athletes to ensure that the device didn’t induce any sort of discomfort. That’s why, when in the sleeve, the sensor rests next to your calf muscle, as opposed to near your shinbone or another sensitive area.

If you want to try it yourself, the Zepp Play Soccer arrives in stores tomorrow for $99. You’ll be able to get it from Apple, Amazon, Best Buy or Zepp’s own site.

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Ms. A. C. Kennedy
My name is Ms A C Kennedy and I am a Health practitioner and Consultant by day and a serial blogger by night. I luv family, life and learning new things. I especially luv learning how to improve my business. I also luv helping and sharing my information with others. Don't forget to ask me anything!

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Lithium-ion batteries have massively improved in the last half-decade, but there are still issues. The biggest, especially for EVs, is that charging takes too long to make them as useful as regular cars for highway driving. Researchers from the University of Warwick (WMG) have discovered that we may not need to be so patient, though. They developed a new type of sensor that measures internal battery temperatures and discovered that we can probably recharge them up to five times quicker without overheating problems.

Overcharging a lithium-ion battery anode can lead to lithium buildup, which can break through a battery's separator, create a short-circuit and cause catastrophic failure. That can cause the electrolyte to emit gases and literally blow up the battery, so manufacturers impose strict charging power limits to prevent it.

Those limits are based on hard-to-measure internal temperatures, however, which is where the WMG probe comes in. It's a fiber optic sensor, protected by a chemical layer that can be directly inserted into a lithium-ion cell to give highly precise thermal measurements without affecting its performance.

The team tested the sensor on standard 18650 li-ion cells, used in Tesla's Model S and X, among other EVs. They discovered that they can be charged five times faster than previously thought without damage. Such speeds would reduce battery life, but if used judiciously, the impact would be minimized, said lead researcher Dr. Tazdin Amietszajew.

Faster charging as always comes at the expense of overall battery life but many consumers would welcome the ability to charge a vehicle battery quickly when short journey times are required and then to switch to standard charge periods at other times.

There's still some work to do. While the research showed the li-ion cells can support higher temperatures, EVs and charging systems would have to have "precisely tuned profiles/limits" to prevent problems. It's also not clear how battery makers would install the sensors in the cells.

Nevertheless, it shows a lot of promise for much faster charging speeds in the near future. Even if battery capacities stayed the same, charging in 5 minutes instead of 25 could flip a lot of drivers over to the green side.

Via: Clean Technica

Source: University of Warwick

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