There's some exciting wearable news coming out of Nike with CEO Mark Parker revealing that the sports giant will be jumping back into the world of wearable tech through a partnership with Apple. That's great news because we feared that, following a scaling back of the team earlier this year, the Fuelband platform may well be on its way out.
The Nike+ Fuelband SE, despite being a year old now, is still one of the best everyday wearables on the market. While it lacks some of the tangible metrics of more serious fitness devices, the SE's use of NikeFuel points is a nifty way of gamifying your life - and it works.
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There are a number of features to play with on the SE, so we've put together a list of tips for getting more out of your device. Whether you're looking for some new ways to use your tracker, or just find the answers to some Fuelband SE FAQs, this manual is here to help.
Label your sessions later
It's a bit of a faff to have to tell your phone every time you're about to start an activity. Luckily you can skip that step. Begin a session by holding down the FuelBand's button until the countdown appears, then tag it via your smartphone later on. You can even tag all of your sessions at the end of the day, just make a mental note of the time of day you did each one.
Get the SE that fits you best
This is an important one. Some fitness wearables on the market are 'one size fits all' but the Fuelband SE comes in three sizes - small, medium, large - with the ability to tweak the tightness of each one further by adding or removing the included links.
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You want to make sure that you've got your SE to a size that fits snugly around your wrist. You don't want to cut off the blood supply to your hand, but you also don't want to the FuelBand sliding down your arm, as this can cause inaccuracy in your data.
Also, remember to head into Device Settings on your phone and tell it whether you wear your FuelBand on your right or left wrist.
Plug your FuelBand SE straight into the USB
The FuelBand comes with a USB docking chord that you've probably been using to charge it, but did you know you can just plug the SE straight into the USB port? Don't be afraid to bend it a little to make it fit - that's what it's designed for.
With so many other wearables requiring their own proprietary chargers, this nifty trick makes the FuelBand SE one of the easiest to keep fully charged.
Incremental goal increases are useful
While you can use the Nike+ software to set specific targets, you can also use the smartphone app to push your daily goal up by either 10% or 20% at a time. Once you've done this, the new target will kick in the next day. But if you find that you're breezing through and need to go harder than 20% more, you'll need to plug your FuelBand into the computer and do it from desktop Nike+ software.
Keep an eye on your memory usage
The FuelBand has an internal memory that will hold all of your activity records. But if you're not a regular syncer, you'll soon start eating into that space. When you see the 'MEM LOW' message flash on the display, it's time to sync with your Nike+ account. If you leave it much later than that the SE will reach 100% capacity and you'll get a 'MEM FULL' message - so make sure you don't get caught out.
Add your niche activities
There are a lot of Sessions activities that Nike can recognise, but every so often you're going to do something that feels like a workout but isn't in the library of activities. Tag it anyway. You see, the more people around the world tagging a certain activity, the more it will become recognised and given the appropriate NikeFuel points to reward you with.
Publish your daily total to your own personal group
You can view your complete history of activity using the Nike+ app or computer software. This is useful for seeing which parts of the day you were most active, but if you want a more basic list view of each day's total then you're best creating a Group just for you, which you can publish your results to at the end of each day.
This means you'll be able to quickly compare your progress at a glance. It's also a great idea to set up Groups with friends. Seeing other people's achievements will only spur you on to push harder.
Personalise your FuelBand so it only shows the data you want
By default, the Nike FuelBand displays your NikeFuel total, calories burned, hours won, step count and time. That's a lot of information to scroll through, but you can whittle it down to the information that's most valuable to you.
Open up the Nike app, ensure that your FuelBand is paired, then enter Device Settings and select which metrics you want displayed. NikeFuel, Move Reminders and Time are probably the most essential, but if you've already got a watch then you can possibly take it down to just two.
If your FuelBand loses or gains time, do a quick sync
Nike has designed its FuelBand to be used as a time-teller, but if you need to alter it for any reason then the band's single button isn't going to be much help. However, say your FuelBand starts displaying an inaccurate time (even if it's off by just a couple of minutes) you can easily fix that in the FuelBand app by tapping on the battery icon at the top of the menu (the one with the name of your FuelBand right next to it) and then hitting Update Device Time. To sync your band's clock with the one on your phone, just tap Match Time to Mobile Device. Easy.
Calibrate your NikeFuel points to match your day
The SE comes with a recommended NikeFuel target of 3,000 but this can be altered to suit your typical daily activity. The best thing to do here is closely monitor your average NikeFuel total at the end of the day for at least a week. Once you've found your daily average, make sure the FuelBand is set at that number - something you can do in the Nike+ software on your computer - then push yourself harder each day and repeat the process when you hit your new target regularly.
Share your Nike Fuelband SE Tips
Got a Nike Fuelband SE? Share a trick that’s changed the way you use your new Nike fitness tracker.