IXR, Inc. is a private Utah "C"
corporation originally organized in 1994 as the LiveWire Project,
Ltd., a Utah R&D partnership, to develop interactive video fitness
technology. IXR invented Exerscape(TM), the real video-based
interactive digital entertainment system for indoor exercise
equipment. Exerscape integrates fitness equipment, DVD and IXR's
digital video technology. Helmet cam video is filmed on location
worth world-class athletes. The video playback speed is dynamically controlled
in real time by the users exercise speed. Workout data is automatically
monitored and saved. The resulting experience mentally transports
users to a desirable outdoor environment while exercising. Workout
data sharing and other motivational communication is enabled
over the Internet. Users may also film and playback their own
favorite trails. The first Exerscape-equipped product is the
Baby boomers drive multi-billion dollar
Over forty six million US individuals
use exercise equipment. Exerscape's real video-based outdoors
theme is aimed directly at the
over-35 segment, the "baby boomers," that have fueled
the growth of this fitness boom into an equipment market
estimated to be
over $5 billion at retail by the Sporting Goods Manufacturers
fitness club market of over $10 billion. The fitness equipment
industry is historically reticent to introduce new products.
When something new becomes successful, the rest of the industry
jumps in to try to knock it off as the segment grows towards
half a billion dollars.
Most industry experts expect the next
big fitness trend will come from the integration of digital
media and the Internet into fitness equipment. The first products
in this space include Icon Health and Fitness' iFit treadmills;
fitness networks from Fitlynxx, Technogym, Netpulse, and E-Zone;
and in animation-based interactive systems from Computrainer
and Ultracoach. Exerscape-equipped fitness equipment is a
uniquely compelling, simple yet powerful, use of dynamic user
feedback with high quality video content.
"The Exerscape display is without a
doubt the best of any [similar] training device."
----------------------Roger Young, President, In-Training,
Inc., four-time Olympic Coach
IXR's first retail product was the Motivator
Designs, a brand of Bell
Sports. Exerscape-equipped demonstration equipment
has also been shown at trade shows by Stairmaster, Icon Health
and Fitness, and StarTrac. IXR is currently testing Exerscape
systems in front of group cycling classes, in rehabilitation
centers, and in a scientific study at Pepperdine University.
Virtually any indoor aerobic exercise equipment, including
treadmills, stationary cycles and trainers, steppers, and
cross-country skiers, is easily adaptable to the Exerscape
In 2004 IXR continued steady progress towards its
goal of combining digital media with fitness equipment to provide motivational exercise systems.
NDS, one of the worlds largest satellite and cable technology companies,
recently ported Exerscape to their new XTV platform and introduced it at the 2004 IBC trade show
in Amsterdam. IXR recently received a fundable score for an NIH SBIR
grant application for porting the Exerscape technology to the Sony PlayStation2 platform.
This project, which will also be supported by Icon Fitness, will utilize Icon's
iFit indoor cycles in an 11 week study with 20 pairs of mothers and daughters.
DVD + Internet = WebDVD
The combination of rich digital media
from DVD and future broadband networks, with the connectivity
of the Internet, will enable compelling new products. Electronic
hardware platforms will range from current high-end PC's with
DVD ROM, to future TV set-top boxes and game consoles, such
as the Sony Playstation 2, and broadband servers. Various
estimates indicate an installed base of between 100 and 160
million DVD ROM equipped devices will exist in 2003, most
with Internet connectivity.IXR's core variable rate digital
video software algorithms work with most standard types of
digital video, including MPEG1, MPEG2, MPEG4 and AVI, that
can be played on PCs and video games.
The Exerscape.com web server will also
support user's sharing their personal workout data over any
Web browser, receiving coaching expertise and motivational
feedback, and remotely monitoring rehabilitation workouts.
Future versions may even enable users to ride with or against
each other remotely via broadband connections. Users may shoot
their own favorite trail videos, and then trade them on CD-RW
or broadband. Between five to twelve million broadband Internet
connections are expected to be installed in homes by 2003.
IXR's patented smooth variable-speed video technology may
also be useful in other markets, including inspection, simulation,
training, and gaming applications. IXR is currently exploring
licensing potential in various digital video player applications.
The competive advantage
New patented digital video technology
"Exerscape pushes the envelope
of interactivity, and is an exciting example of how the dramatic
visual impact of DVD can create an immersive, responsive user
----------------------Jim Taylor, author of "DVD Demystified"
and the "DVD FAQ"
IXR's Exerscape(TM) leverages XPlayer(TM),
US patented technology that dynamically controls the video
speed by monitoring the users' current exercise speed. IXR
plans to exploit this technology and produce revenue streams
from : 1) OEM production and licensing of the initial hardware,
software and content; 2) follow-on video content production
and sale on DVD and broadband; and 3) follow-on communication
with and between an active, affluent user base. IXR also plans
on licensing the core video speed control technology for use
in other digital video player programs for the travel industry,
sports analysis and coaching, video inspection and other industries where dynamically
controlled video technology can be leveraged.
An outdoor workout experience,
Inspiration for the Exerscape
system originally arose from Ray Bradbury's short story "The
Veldte" and was fed by long hours of winter indoor
training for bicycle racing, watching Lemond win the Tour de
France on videos from World
Cycling Productions. This seed has germinated into the most
compelling, realistic product of its kind. As the cost of digital
video technology continues to plummet, Exerscape will become
a dominant player in the fast growing interactive entertainment
segment of the five billion dollar US fitness equipment industry.
Exerscape leverages two popular themes, health and fitness and
the great outdoors, enhanced with the connectivity of the Internet,
into an exciting new product category. Competitive souls may
"virtually" race in world-famous competitions, comparing their
performances with others. Group indoor fitness activities will
become even more compelling with large screen videos. Spiritual
benefits may even be realized from exercising in God's greatest
places. A whole world of content is out there waiting to be
captured and brought to these educated, affluent consumers.
The Blackburn Motivator Interactive Real Video Training System
is the first of many Exerscape-equipped fitness products for
a convergent digital marketplace.
"Melding beautiful digital video
and indoor fitness equipment, for our health!"
----------------------Bruce Ewert, Founder, IXR, Inc.