Jawbone UP

jawbone-up I got a new gadget today. It's the Up fitness band from Jawbone. It tracks your steps, activity and sleep through a very sleek and minimal band. It syncs to a beautiful app that can extrapolate a lot of useful data and presents them in user-friendly way. I'm pretty excited to have this as another training tool, allowing me to track my sleep and calorie intake. I still have to log in my training rides manually, but hopefully in the future there'll be some sort of Strava or Garmin integration to streamline everything.

The band itself seems well constructed and unobtrusive. It doesn't look too bad either, but I'm such a stickler for accessories, which is why I went with black. They packed in a lot of technology in this thin and lightweight band, without too much in the way of visual feedback. There's a tiny flat button on one end that triggers a number of features, but most of the settings lie within the app itself.

While I don't like the idea of having to log in everything I eat, the UP system streamline a lot of popular meals and foods by having a list of photos to choose from. You just pick and choose and the app will add it up. You can also scan bar codes as well as type in entries manually. Last year I used a fitness app that had similar features, and it was interesting to see how many calories I needed to consume to keep up with my active training schedule.

The secret sauce of the UP system is the level of insights it gives you once you've logged in a healthy number of entries. It can show you things you otherwise wouldn't have guessed about your sleep behavior, eating habits and general activity level. I consider myself a highly active person who watches what they eat most of the time and is religious about getting enough rest. I'm looking forward to see how UP can make a difference. Stay tuned for a follow-up review.