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November 23, 2011 at 1:52 PMComments: 0 Faves: 0

Get UP to Get Down

By E.M. Wollof from SLN More Blogs by This AuthorFrom the The Cold Boot Blog Series

Boot it up fellow techies! Let's dig into some new mobile tech this week.

Jawbone recently released UP, a mobile health band that syncs up with the Iphone and gives daily data on your activity level, fuel intake and sleep. The new tech has been greeted with the usual mixed bag of responses and I will get to those soon enough. First and foremost, let's rip this thing apart and talk about some features.

Features:

  • Tracking of daily activity
    • # of steps taken
    • distance traveled
    • calories burned
    • pace of travel
    • intensity level
    • active vs. inactive time
    • GPS routes taken

The UP uses a precision motion sensor to track your movements and the intensity of said movements. While this may seem incredibly practical for the daily tracking of movement, what if I am waving at someone really hard?

  • Reminds you to move (by you telling it when to do so) when you've been inactive for too long.

For those of us stuck in a cubicle all day, an alarm that vibrates when it is time to move is one heck of an idea.

  • Tracks sleep patterns
    • Deep sleep time vs. light sleep time
    • Hours slept
    • Time awake
    • Overall Sleep Quality given upon waking

For all those who wonder why they still feel like crap even after a supposed "full" night sleep, this feature has the potential to change your life....little bit creepy though.

  • Alarm
    • Wakes you at a moment close to when the alarm is set and you are in a light sleep pattern

My personal favorite feature as most of my mornings I awake furious at the sound blaring out of my alarm. No, seriously...furious.

  • Track your meals
    • Take pictures of meal to enter into intake catalog
    • A designated time later, UP asks you how the meal has made you feel

Talk about the ultimate guilt trip! "Hey fatty, how's that quarter pounder with bacon making you feel?" Without a doubt, this will probably be the more effective of the features.

  • Social aspects
    • Challenge or team up with friends to complete posed health challenges
    • Challenge yourself with personal challenges

Required feature in today's day and age...

  • Tech Aspects
    • 10-day battery life
    • Sweat/Water proof up to 1 meter
    • Syncs to iphone through hidden 3.5mm plug at the end

Overall Thoughts

There has been a lot of talk on both sides of the fence about this new product. Opponents of UP state that the user interface presented on the iphone is, at the same time, confusing and overly simple. While this may seem like a slightly counter intuitive statement, an app being simple can be a death knell, as the boring factor begins to rear its ugly head. The confusing comes in when there are multiple buttons represented on the same screen that all do the same thing. Also, users have pointed out that the battery doesn't actually last 10-days. In fact, the first run of UP actually broke before the second charge, this has since been fixed.

Most who have bought the product are happy with it though. They say that it is stylish enough and they enjoy the constant reminder to pay attention to their health. Personally, while I think that UP is a great idea, I don't think it is the end all to this type of product. There have been many iterations of this type of health band, some of which sport an external LED, some of which track exercise more precisely, all of which have yet to hit that ultimate goal of mass acceptance. The UP is a great product from a great developer, but I think it is a stepping stone to greater things.

Shut it down and I'll see you crazy cats next week...

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Next:The Ultimate Spit TestPreviously:Getting Some Perspective

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