beauty

There's an app that tells you to step away from the fridge.

Imagine if every time you made the sneaky dash to the fridge an alarm went off in your pocket and your phone alerted everyone around you to your tim tam hustle? Not bad enough?  How about it then sending out a tweet shaming your (lack of) exercise and alerting everybody to the fact that you’ve over eaten that day?

Welcome to 2015 people, the year where fitness trackers turn into pocket sized A-holes.

If you thought Commando from The Biggest Loser was bad, just wait until you download Carrot Hunger.

Is it just us, or is this fitness tracker downright mean?

Available for both iPhone and Androids, Carrot Hunger is “a sadistic AI construct with one simple goal: to transform your flabby carcass into a Grade A specimen of the human race”.

According to the app’s description, it “will do whatever it takes – including threatening, inspiring, ridiculing, and bribing you – to make this happen. You will lose weight – or else.”

Ummmm, okay.

Given that I have indulged a little over the Christmas break (and I felt my self confidence was getting a little high) I installed the delightful little cherub onto my iPhone.

I entered data on my phone such as my weight (Carrot asked me if I was lying) my height and then my birthday (or as Carrot put it, “the day I was expelled from my mother”- charming).

I was then assigned the name of “Meatbag” (uh, thanks) and told that I was “a kind of active office drone”.

Right – feeling good.

I discovered users of Carrot are asked to enter their weight daily and use the app as a calorie tracker (with attitude) to input data. You can do this manually which provides an estimate of the associated calories, or you can scan barcodes for exact nutritional information.

Image: itunes
ADVERTISEMENT

The app then tracks your BMI and progress and let's you know exactly what they think of it.

There is a weight loss graph (which is available for public ridicule observation) and the all knowing Carrot also provides workout tips and hints to increase your performance. If you happen to have overindulged on that particular day, the avatar version of yourself on the app begins to bloat and swell, leaving little to the imagination.

The Daily Mail says "the the user is then 'punished' into getting back on track"

THIS is what happens to 'you' when you eat too much (according to Carrot Hunger) Image: iTunes

Punished? Well, yeah.

If public twitter humiliation is not enough for you, the app can also send full screen adverts to your phone reminding you of you progress (or lack there of) and their assessment of you. Really nice if you happen to leave your phone on the table of a restaurant while you use the bathroom. "Bing! You've got a message you fat bastard. Do not order a cookie"*

“I’m addicted to my Jawbone”

The app also likes to convert every single piece of food that you eat into the amount of exercise you need to do to repent for your sins.

At first, I was feeling pretty damn smug given that I had just eaten an apple (for the first time in months) but as I entered the data for my previous day's diet, it was clear that Carrot was not going to be my friend. The alarm that sounded of my phone (yes, an actually alarm) subtly (not) reminded me that I was nearing my daily calorie limit.

ADVERTISEMENT
Run? Oh no, you've got the wrong girl. Image: iTunes

Luckily, I was without what the tech kids call an 'ibeacon'. I actually had no freaking idea what that was, but was pretty relieved when I found out Carrot can use an ibeacon (which I later discovered is a device which can determine the location and presence of other like-minded devices via transmitted signals) to determine when you open the fridge and berates you accordingly.

That's right, Carrot knows when you head towards the fridge for an arvo pick-me-up. He knows when you reach for an extra piece of cheese. He is watching. All. The. Time.

I don't think I'll be purchasing an ibeacon anytime soon...

The 15 biggest fitness trends for 2015

So basically, Carrot is not the app for you if you enjoy gentle encouragement and support from your fitness equipment. Instead it's the latest offering in what appears to be the new method of encouraging people to move more and eat less. Much less dramatic than the recently released fitness tracker which employs the use of electric shocks to "remind" people when they have been inactive for too long but still a bit of an arsehole when it comes to its method and delivery.

* The app doesn't actually call you a fat bastard, but you get the idea.

For some less intense fitness inspiration, check out these awesome fitness trackers. I have a Garmin Vivofit and I luuurrrvveee it.

00:00 / ???