Technologizer

Jawbone’s Up Wristband: It’s Back

After a year's absence, the healthy-living gadget is back in a version which aims to eliminate the first edition's kinks.

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Jawbone

A year ago, Jawbone — the company best known for its Bluetooth headsets and Jambox portable speakers — got into an entirely new business with a wristband called Up. Like the Fitbit, Nike’s FuelBand and other products, Up was a bit of wearable technology which aimed to encourage healthy living by monitoring your activity and turning it into data you could track over time, using (in Up’s case) a smartphone app.

It was a neat idea and an elegant-looking little gadget. Unfortunately, it quickly became clear that the wristband had serious reliability issues — it sometimes failed to charge properly or simply stopped working altogether.

Jawbone dealt with the problem as best it could: It pulled Up from the market after just a few weeks, and told early customers that they could get a refund (and keep their wristbands). It also said that Up would be back.

And now it is. The company is releasing a new version of Up today, with a new companion iOS app. (An Android version is on its way.)

Everything that’s new about the band itself  is invisible: On the outside, it looks just like its attractive-but-troublesome predecessor. It’s still a slender, bendable plastic loop, with a plug on one end which you use to connect the band to your iOS device and transfer the data it’s collected. (Jawbone may be famous for Bluetooth technology, but Up isn’t a wireless device.)

Upon diagnosing the original version’s failures, the company discovered that it wasn’t water-resistant enough, and that some customers twisted it in unexpected ways that damaged the interior components. So it reengineered the design, making it simpler and more robust. And then it performed vast amounts of testing to ensure that it would stand up to the way real people used the wristband, which is designed to be used 24/7, except when the user is charging and transferring data.

Jawbone Up app

Jawbone

It also redid the app, which collects data about your movements both when you’re up and about and when you’re sleeping, but also lets you record details on items such as exercise you’ve performed and foods you’ve eaten (it can identify snacks from the UPC symbols on their wrappers).

I haven’t used the new version of Up yet, so I don’t have any definitive opinion other than that it’s still a cool concept and I hope the new version lives up to its promise. Offhand, I can’t think of another example of a major product which was yanked from the market and then attempted a comeback almost a year later. The good news for Jawbone is that none of Up’s numerous competitors sewed up the market in its absence. It’s still got as good a shot as any of its rivals at being a big deal.

Up is $129.99, and is available in eight colors and three sizes — small, medium and large.

4 comments
acnarqt
acnarqt

Comprei no mês de maio uma pulseira Up jawbone na loja apple em Orlando, a mesma foi utilizada até o mês de agosto dai em diante não mais aceitou carga na bateria e consequentemente deixei de utilizá-la, fiz vários contatos, primeiro com a loja em Orlando, que informou que a garantia era responsabilidade do fabricante, posteriormente vários contatos foram feitos com o atendimento ao consumidor da jawbone, nos quais foram solicitados endereço, cupom fiscal etc.sendotudo enviado sem que qualquer garantia me foi dada.

Antonio Carlos Nascimento   

PeteNTea
PeteNTea

Do no purchase this product.  Learn from zymaze and myself....the UP still has issues and it will FAIL on you in within 3 months of normal use.  The product doesn't feel so bad when in use.  It can feel uncomfortable when doing desk work such as typing.  It can be awkward when holding your partner as well.  I am currently on my 3rd jawbone UP in 3 months, so that should tell you something.  I believe the main problem might be the actual button as it isn't completely sealed so when water seeps through...disaster!   I was good for the first few weeks the second time around and not taking it in the shower...but then it got dirty and I HAD TO WASH IT.  few days later and numerous flashing lights...it FAILED.

zymaze
zymaze

Good luck if this one doesn't work! 

 I was an original adopter of the first UP, buying it from the company pre-release.  It took me 10 months and multiple broken "4 to 6 week and you will get your refund" promises to finally get my refund on my broken UP. I opted for the store credit but what they did not tell me was that the credit was,  "...One-time use credit good for only one transaction. Unused portion of credit will be forfeited. Valid for 6 months. Excludes limited edition and other selected products.Cannot be combined with other offers or promotions."  So while any Joe can now get $50 off a Jambox, not me, and I bought the original UP pre-release from the company. 

Buyer beware!  You might want to wait a year to see if it works then buy from big store with a good refund policy so you will not have to deal with Jawbone directly.

GameCenterGames
GameCenterGames

I love the color of the blue one. I am seriously thinking about picking one up. Has anyone actually used one yet? I just wonder how they feel on your wrist?