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Bluetooth headset maker Jawbone releases a health-monitoring wristband

Consumer Reports News: November 03, 2011 10:38 AM

Jawbone, a maker of Bluetooth headsets and speakers based in San Francisco, has announced its next portable device. And oddly enough, it doesn't have Bluetooth connectivity or even anything to do with audio—except maybe sound health.

Today the company unveiled Up, a water-resistant wristband that contains an accelerometer and other electronics that can track a wearer's movements and additional biometrics. The wristband can then be plugged into an Apple iOS-powered device, such as an iPhone; it then downloads the data to a supplied app.

Basically, Up can act as a step counter that allows wearers to see how often they're actively walking, versus sitting around doing nothing. But the device can do other tricks too.

For example, Up can track your sleeping patterns, and it can be programmed to vibrate and wake a wearer at the appropriate time—say, at the end of a deep-sleep cycle. The app can also analyze the calorie content of food you've eaten from photos taken by your iPhone, and compare that information to biometric data collected by the wristband at mealtimes.

Naturally, the app also comes with social networking aspects, so owners can share with friends how they are faring health-wise and even prompt challenges, such as contests to see who can walk the farthest in a day.

The Jawbone Up will be available on November 6 in three sizes and seven colors for about $100 at retailers such as Best Buy and Target.

UP by Jawbone with MotionX Technology Empowers You to Live a Healthier Life (PDF) [Jawbone press release]
Jawbone wants you to get UP and move [CNN]

Paul Eng

   

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