Jawbone Up Review
The Up wristband by Jawbone had a rocky start. The company pulled the 1st gen model off the shelf for, “less than acceptable performance.” Many of the units just stopped working, but Jawbone did issue refunds. Now the second gen model is out and apparently stronger than ever. I got my hands on one to see how it performs.Click on my affiliate link and check back soon for some cool colors!
Out of the Box
The box doesn’t really come with much in it, just the band and a small charging cord.It’s fine you wouldn’t really expect much more. The only problem is how they neglect to tell you to immediately plug the band into your phone. I looked through the packaging for a few minutes to see if I missed something, but eventually gave up. I just downloaded the UP app and plugged the damn thing in, it worked.
I’m a tech guy, but I wonder how someone less tech savvy, like mom, would fare? There should be some basic stationary that says,” Download ‘Up’ App, then plug Up band into phone.” I know it sounds simple, but if you didn’t do your research and know there was a mobile app, you could sit there confused. I did however unbox this bad boy in a bar, so maybe the beer slowed me down.
I just downloaded the UP app and plugged the damn thing in, it worked.
Picking Your Size
The Up band comes in three sizes small, medium and large. I originally ordered mine online, but saw it in the store so I canceled my online order. I measured my wrist, and bought a medium, but once in the store changed my mind. The packaging has a flap of plastic on the outside so you can test the size. The medium seemed a little small, but luckily an employee was wearing one. He let me try his on and it was a little snug, so I got the large. If you’re on the cusp of sizes, I’d get the larger. Jawbone recommends this, but unfortunately I didn’t read this until after I ordered mine.
If you’re on the cusp of sizes, I’d get the larger. Jawbone recommends this, but unfortunately I didn’t read this until after I ordered mine.
The device is a little thicker than I expected. It’s not obnoxious, but you know you have it on. I’m not used to having things on my wrist so I probably notice it more then someone who wears jewelry regularly. I do however keep looking at it for the date and time, despite there being no screen. You wear the device 24/7 except when you sync or charge it, but battery life is about 10 days and syncing only takes a minute.
The fun starts once you start getting data. I’m a workout/diet nut, so I love this stuff. I’m also really interested in sleep and the sleep cycles so this was right up my alley. I sync mine multiple times a day, because I’m obsessive, but Jawbone suggests syncing at least twice a day. You have to tell the device you are going to sleep, by putting it into sleep mode. It’s fairly easy, but I’ve forgotten before, which means I don’t have information from that night.
Once you begin collecting data you can start to see how much you’ve moved, calories burned and sleep patterns. You can also use the “stop watch” function to input workouts. This being said, it actually does a pretty good job at knowing you did some kind of exercise. The more you tell the device the more it learns and the more patterns you’ll see.
Jawbone did an excellent job on the application.It is iOS only for now, but there should be an Android app soon. Inputing food and nutrition information is super easy and their database is huge. It’s so easy to scan an item or type in the name and track your intake.
There is also a sleep tracking section that shows you how long it took you to fall asleep, when you were in light or deep sleep and how many times you woke up. You can program the band to wake you up each morning from within the app. It vibrates to wake you at the “optimal time,” it has calculated based off of your sleep pattern. It typically wakes me before my set alarm time, which I’m starting to like, it gets me a few minutes ahead of my day. You can also use this function for a quick power nap. It’s actually surprisingly nice to be woken up by the band vibrating. I was leery at first, but it’s almost like you just wake up without really noticing.
All of your collected data is displayed in really nice graphs and progress bars so you can visually see your data. Information can be shared with friends or other Up users right from the app. This may be a nice motivator if you need that extra push.
There are options to calibrate the band using the stopwatch function to record a work out. Jawbone says it’s not necessary, but may improve accuracy. I haven’t fully calibrated my band, but it seems accurate. I tracked a run and the distance was fairly close to what I actually ran.
All of your collected data is displayed in really nice graphs and progress bars so you can visually see your data.
The app and the band work really well together. Syncing is easy as well as tracking your progress. In my opinion the device will satisfy both health gurus, but also people just trying to get a little healthier. So if you want to start of the new year a little healthier, the Jawbone Up band may be a good tool to use.