When I first knew about the Jawbone UP, I got really excited.
In retrospect, I know this was a very odd thing to want just before giving birth since there’s not a lot of lifestyle to track when you’re at the beck and call of a newborn. But the geek in me wanted to own a piece of wearable technology which might help me track and make changes to my lifestyle so life wouldn’t seem like such a mess. I must confess I was also attracted to the cute mint green band and that I could pair it effortlessly with one of my favourite gadgets of all time – the iPhone.
The UP band logs every bit of activity that goes on in your life, from the steps you take and what goes in your active lifestyle, to your sleep patterns and diet. You can use these pieces of information either to make adjustments – eat better to track a better diet, sleep earlier to achieve more deep sleep time etc – or you can use it to make your life more efficient. It can be used by parents, for example, to share baby duties more efficiently by analysing their deep sleep cycles.
I haven’t quite done this yet but I’m definitely using it to ensure I chalk in more deep sleep hours to better my milk supply. So if I see that I’ve gotten very little deep sleep on a certain night, I’d make a conscientious effort the next day to sleep earlier, or nap during the day. Quite specific to my situation at the moment, but I suppose that’s the cool thing about it…
At first glance, the Jawbone UP looks like a fashion accessory – like a Livestrong band (which once was fashionable anyway), Phiton wristband or Road ID. But unlike the three, it actually comes packed with technology. It comes in a variety of colours and three different sizes – and you can try the size at the store before you buy it as the packaging allows you to test out how much leeway you have on your wrist once it’s on. I must say part of the attraction was its design, which reminded me of the brand’s Jambox. It is pretty ergonomic so it doesn’t get in the way as you wear it and is water resistant for when you shower or wash your hands.
On one end of the Jawbone is a headphone jack which plugs into your iPhone when you need to sync it – which means the band lasts for around 10 days power-wise since there’s no need for a wireless connection with your device. And on the other end is a button which allows you to toggle between sleep and wake. The band is always on, and never turns off.
Admittedly, I’ve not been using the band at its optimum yet. The most used function would be the sleep function – reason stated above – but I’ve also been using it to gauge how active or inactive I’ve been post Charly’s birth. I’ve got about 4 ‘team mates’ to compare myself against so every day I can see how normal or abnormal my day has been. The friendly comparison injects a healthy dose of motivation so I’m able to stop making excuses and to get my arse up from the nursing chair.
For example, I have a marathoner friend who moves an average of about 10,000 or more steps a day, an active friend who does about 7,000 ish and a fellow gal pal who will average around 4,000 plus steps a day. Below you’ll see that on May 3, I moved over 3,000 steps which to be honest is because I took Charly and went shopping all over the place. I was absolutely knackered by the end of the day.
That’s a really good day post birth. On some other days I only move about 800 steps, which is SO SAD. But you can see the motivational value of the comparison there.
Here is said girlfriend and I with our Jawbone UP bands – We’ve had a bit of fun accessorising as well, so it doesn’t just look like a piece of random rubber on your wrist. Nice?
The Jawbone UP is available online at the Apple Singapore store at S$189.