This unassuming wristband tracks your sleep, movement, diet and overall well-being.
It's been a few months since its debut in the United States, but the Jawbone UP finally goes on sale in Australia on 3 April through Apple stores, Apple, online, Telstra stores, Telstra online, and Optus stores, retailing for $149.99.
Jawbone is quick to correct anyone that tries to lump the UP into the ‘fitness gadget’ category. According to Jorgen Nordin, head of channel and partner development at Jawbone, the UP is a “wellness product” that helps you learn more about your lifestyle.
Using a 3-axle accelerometer and an iOS/Android app, the UP can track your steps, sleep, diet and overall well-being. It isn’t designed to help you lose weight per se, but it does track calories burned and you can set step and sleep goals.
What’s different about the UP is that it doesn’t look like a gadget. The bright colour (it’s available in eight hues), rubber molding and absence of any screen makes it look a standard wristband, or “functional jewelry” as Jawbone refers to it.
But there’s more to the UP than meets the eye. The removable cap at the end hides a 3.5mm jack that plugs into your iPhone or Android phone's headphone jack to sync with the UP app and transfer data. The silver button at the other end switches the band between sleep and awake modes, and initiates the power nap and stopwatch mode features. And there’s a vibration motor inside that’s used for the silent alarm and idle alert features. Right now, only iOS and Android is supported, but Jawbone aims to support all major platforms in the future.
The UP collects all the data, and the app presents it in a meaningful format, with numerous stats, graphs and charts so you can keep an eye on your progress. Through the app, you can also log all of your food and drink, set smart sleep alarms (which wake you up with a silent vibration when you’re in a light sleep phase), track workouts and check what your other UP friends are up to.
While it isn’t advertised as the UP 2, it’s actually the second generation of this 'wellness' tracker. When it originally launched in the United States in December 2011, complaints over the unit failing were widespread. Jawbone swiftly stopped selling it and offered refunds or replacements to all customers.
The new UP looks much like the old one, but it’s undergone rigorous testing to ensure it survives everyday wear and tear. Jawbone created their own water-resistance and wearability standards to test the UP, and put it through 46 weeks of user trials and 2.9 million hours of real-world testing. The end result is a wristband that’s designed to be worn 24/7, even when you’re sleeping and while you’re in the shower (although not while you’re swimming).