To expand its “digital ecosystem,” Suunto, the maker of sports watches, dive computers and precision instruments owned by Amer Sports, has announced what it calls the Suunto Partner Program. The company has opened its cloud-based application programming interface (API) to encourage companies and other individuals to design apps to work with the Suunto app and Suunto devices for optimal data syncing and use.

The Suunto app itself provides a number of services, such as workout analysis, training logs and route-finding, but the Partner Program enables the company to expand not only the range of those services but also the marketing possibilities for itself and its partners.

For example, the company has been working with Strave, a San Francisco-based company, since 2014, when Suunto Ambit watches became compatible with Strava's GPS-based tracking app for runners and cyclists. These days, the Suunto app is fully integrated with Strava, and customers get a 60-day trial of the Strava Summit with the purchase of every Suunto watch.

There is a similar deal in effect with TrainingPeaks, the Colorado-based maker of web, mobile and desktop apps. Every Suunto watch purchase comes with a 30-day free trial for TrainingPeaks Premium. The TrainingPeaks app provides tracking as well as workout-plan generation from user-entered goals.

Other recent options include the Keep app, which provides workout plans and tracking, and the Endomondo app, produced by Under Armour, which combines tracking with a social network.

Participants in the Suunto Partner Program can include promotional offers in the Suunto Value Pack, included with watch sales. In time they will be able to join the affiliate sales program, which Suunto plans to launch later this year. Prospective creators can apply for free access to the Suunto Cloud API at Suunto.com/WelcomePartners.

Suunto also offers a second open development platform, called Movesense, which has its own tools and API for the creation of motion sensors. Among the company's Movesense partners is the ski manufacturer Atomic, which unveiled its Movesense product this month at the 2019 Consumer Electronics Show.

Like Suunto, Atomic is owned by Amer Sports. The brand was founded in Finland in 1936 to manufacture compasses.