The content of this blog is my personal opinion only. Although I am an employee - currently of Nvidia, in the past of other companies such as Iagination Technologies, MIPS, Intellectual Ventures, Intel, AMD, Motorola, and Gould - I reveal this only so that the reader may account for any possible bias I may have towards my employer's products. The statements I make here in no way represent my employer's position, nor am I authorized to speak on behalf of my employer. In fact, this posting may not even represent my personal opinion, since occasionally I play devil's advocate.

See http://docs.google.com/View?id=dcxddbtr_23cg5thdfj for photo credits.

Wednesday, September 02, 2015

Watch and fitness band

After the Withings Activite' Pop failed to satisfy, I have reverted to a slightly updated version of what I have been wearing for the past year: a semi-smart watch on one wrist, and a fitness tracker wristband on the other.

Before their watery demise, I was wearing the Basis B1 watch, and a Jawbone UP.   I bought the Basis watch first. I later bought the Jawbone UP, at first just to get vibrating alarms - but I liked the UP iPhone app so much more that it became my main fitness tracker.   I mainly used the Basis as a watch, to tell the time, and because it had a display so that I could see how many steps I had done without opening my phone.

Now I am wearing a Pebble Smartwatch, and a Jawbone UP2.

The UP2 because I continue to prefer its app, and for sleep monitoring.  The Jawbone UP was able to tell whether I was awake or asleep automatically, but only the Misfit watchapp can do that on the Pebble - and it interferes with other watchapps, like the Jawbone UP watchapp, which actually counts steps. 

Interference between watchapps is the bugbear of the Pebble.

I was therefore a bit disappointed to learn that the UP2 has separate modes for sleep and awake.   Automatically detecting is the entire reason I got the UP2.

The Pebble SmartWatch  (a) because running the Jawbone UP watchapp displays steps taken in almost real time - i.e. because it has a display.   (b)_Swimming.  (c)_Other smartwatch goodness: (c.1) calendar (via SmartWatch Pro), (c.2)_notifications about email and text (mixed blessing, needs better filtering), (c.3)_bus and train schedule. (d) Because I can write my own watchapps, in my own copious free time. 

I can already feel the gravitational pull:  I am frustrated when something that could fit in the smartwatch's limited form factor is not available as a watchapp. Just as I prefer to use my cellphone for most things that fit on it, I think the same will apply to the watch.   The cellphone just has a bigger display, and the MacBook an even bigger display, and a big keyboard.

If we had goggles...