Apple today unveiled Time to Walk, an inspiring new audio walking experience on Apple Watch for Fitness+ subscribers, created to encourage users to walk more often and reap the benefits from one of the healthiest activities. Each original Time to Walk episode invites users to immerse themselves in a walk alongside influential and interesting people as they share thoughtful and meaningful stories, photos, and music.
A few things I find interesting about this feature. First, it’s a clever idea marrying what is, basically, a podcast, with exercise features. I tend to walk every day, usually while listening to music rather than podcasts, but I can see why this would encourage people to get out and exercise. Nice lineup of initial episodes, including the legendary Dolly Parton.
But what I find really fascinating about this is that it’s essentially a paywalled podcast, available only to Fitness+ subscribers. Apple says it’ll be adding new episodes every Monday. Plus, the feature folds in music by adding a custom playlist tied in with the narrator, as well as photos that appear on the Apple Watch at certain points. A little wacky, but okay. Given that rumor has the company considering its own paid “Podcasts+” service, this might help the company suss out whether or not that idea has legs.
This also ventures down a road that I imagine Apple will continue to investigate: audio-only Fitness+ workouts. Peloton already offers a similar feature, and I’d be surprise if Apple didn’t add such content in a subsequent Fitness+ update.