In May, the Space Force, which is part of the Department of the Air Force, announced it would conduct a two-year testing period with the Air Force Research Laboratory, or AFRL, to see how wearable fitness trackers might regularly monitor the fitness and wellness of Guardians.
Garmin announced in a press release Monday that its Instinct 2 Solar and Forerunner 55 smartwatch models were chosen for the Space Force's program due to their battery life and the biometric data the devices gather. They were also chosen because they have the ability to disable GPS functionality — an important feature as the military has raised privacy and security concerns over wearable technology in the past.
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“Enrollment has been robust, with over two-thirds of the 8,400-strong Space Force signing up since the program was announced in May,” Garmin's press release said. “To date, more than 6,000 Garmin smartwatches have been or will be issued to active military members who have agreed to log workouts and complete monthly surveys provided by AFRL, and a second wave of enrollment is expected to begin in October.”