Audience is introducing a new chip designed to bring motion tracking features to smartphones without causing serious battery drain. Instead of pairing a Fitbit or other fitness tracker with your phone, the Audience MQ100 chip could let you use your phone as an always-on fitness tracker.

Audience MQ100

The MQ100 chip uses less than 5 mW while constantly monitoring data from your phone’s sensors including the gyroscope, magnetometer, acceloremeter, and pressure sensors. Audience says most devices would use between 60 and 200mW to make the same measurements.

Audience is hoping to market its chip to smartphone makers hoping to add health and fitness tracking features to their devices, although the MQ100 chip could also come in handy for navigation or other applications.

The MQ100 isn’t the only game in town. Apple uses a motion co-processor of its own in the Apple A7 chip found in the iPhone 5S, for instance. The Audience chip could bring similar capabilities to other devices.

On the other hand, a phone is a poor substitute for a wearable fitness tracker — unless you have your phone in your pocket everywhere you go.

via Tom’s Hardware

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