Previewing the New Fitbit Flex
The Flex is a new fitness tracker from Fitbit, set to launch this month (after a bit of delay on the release date). It's billed as a wireless activity and sleep wristband and it follows Fitbit's other popular trackers, including the One, the Zip and the older Ultra.
The Fitbit Flex is similar to the Nike Fuelband and the Jawbone Up. Its main differentiator is price. The Flex tracks all the main activities of similar fitness bands at $100, compared to $130 for Jawbone, $150 for the Fuelband.
The Flex tracks steps, distance, calories, active minutes, hours slept and sleep quality. You wear it on your wrist, and five LED lights tell you when you've reached certain percentages of the day's goals. Trying to get another light to brighten up the band can be highly satisfying and motivating.
The Flex has a silent wake alarm, which wakes you with a slight buzz to gently and naturally get you up in the morning, and it's water-resistant, so you don't have to worry if you accidentally wear it in the shower. The rechargeable battery should provide five to seven days of operation. The device integrates with health and fitness apps and syncs via Bluetooth 4.0 to iPhones, iPads, iPod Touches, PCs, Macs and select Android devices.
The Fuelband and the Up come in three different sizes. The Flex is sent to you with both a small and a large wristband so you can adjust it. Right now, the website promises four colors: slate, black, teal and tangerine.
Will the Flex live up to the hype? We should find out later this month. For now, you can pre-order the device from most of Fitbit's retail partners.