If there's one thing we're not short of, it's fitness trackers. All pretty much serve up the same data. But the majority share one common problem; flooding you with data and then not putting it to any real use.
Things are changing though. Recent crowdfunding success stories like
Ollinfit prove there's an appetite for trackers to do much more than simply record and throw lots of numbers at you. There's now a handful of devices, which can analyse data and even give you real-time feedback during your workouts.
So which of the wearables are actually taking activity tracking to the next level? Let's take a look at the best (and worst) examples available right now.
WEAR - Moov Now
Technically, this is coaching from your wrist or ankle, depending where you're trying to make improvements. The second generation Moov Now sensor introduced a slimmer, more elegant design with an improved battery life to take full advantage of its added activity tracking powers.
But the killer feature remains the real-time coaching mode, which will tell you to swing your arms harder during an interval running session or throw that jab quicker during your cardio boxing session.
In our Moov Now review we said: "When you go out for a run, you can choose training plans from running efficiency, intervals and open training. These are given clear and beneficial names such as 'help me run farther and easier', 'improve my pace and distance' and 'push me to the limit.' It's the stuff hardcore runners want, and presented in a way that's not scary for newbies. It's a great selection of training plans, for all levels of ability."
Now if only Moov could remove the need to carry your smartphone around with you to use it, then it might convince a few more phablet users at Wareable HQ to take it out for a spin.
ALMOST THERE - Jawbone
Despite our gripes with the design, Jawbone and its line of trackers remain one of the most elegant ways to count your steps. But it's not just about looking pretty, it has brains too and it's showing the likes of Fitbit how you can use your data to make valuable changes to your daily routine.
Jawbone's Smart Coaching software has been around and evolving since the UP24, analysing data to give you useful suggestions to implement. Whether that's going to bed 20 minutes earlier, taking a few more steps in the morning or adding something new to your diet.
Wareable verdict: Jawbone UP2 review
So what do we want to see next? Hopefully the same kind of analysis can be applied to workout data pulled through third party applications as well and offer the kind of real-time feedback the Moov devices can.
It's all really impressive stuff so far and hopefully some of its closest rivals can take a leaf out of Jawbone's book for the next generation of fitness trackers.
SQUARE - Apple Watch
Before Apple finally decided to show off its first ever smartwatch, Tim Cook and company made a pretty big deal about its credentials as a fitness companion. They brought model-turned-runner Christy Turlington out on stage so she could talk up how much it helped her with her marathon training. We even got to peek into those secret labs where those sporty features were being honed and developed.
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Sadly, when the Apple Watch finally turned up, those revolutionary features, like Activity mode along with disappointing third party app support, meant it was generally better off being left in your gym bag. For the Apple Watch 2, we're expecting big improvements. Still, if there's anyone that can make those changes that will help a gadget fit into and improve your lifestyle, it's Apple.
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