Jawbone has led the way in the fitness tracker market ever since it released its first wrist-worn device with the original Up. A new budget device called the Up Move is breaking new ground again by coming in a form that allows users to choose how they want to wear it.
The circular device can be fixed into a wristband or to a clip that can be attached to clothing, opening up the fitness tracker market to all those who have previously been reluctant to wear a wristband. Its £40 price tag will also potentially attract customers who have been put off by the high cost of other fitness trackers from Jawbone and the likes of Sony and Garmin.
But does the limited functionality that comes with a budget device like this make such a wearable worthwhile?
Up Move Design
Jawbone seems to specialise in simplicity and the Up Move is no exception. It comes in five colours - for both the case and the device itself - and features different geometric patterns that have become Jawbone's signature design across the Up range.
There are no charging or connection ports and the only button is found on its circular, patterned front.
The strap and the clip holder are a no-frills affair, simply offering function rather than any fashionable form.
Worn on the wrist it feels a bit like a locker key holder you'd get at a swimming pool or gym. That being said, the strap is much more sturdy than other wearables like the Sony Smartband.
Fortunately for those who don't like the design, it can easily be worn discreetly clipped onto the inside of a pocket and forgotten about.
Up Move Battery and App
The Up Move features a flat coin battery, which Jawbone claims lasts up to six months. There's no way of proving this yet of course, but that does make a vast improvement on the week or so that the average fitness band currently offers.
Jawbone's fitness tracker app is one of the best-developed ecosystems out there and one of the biggest selling points of the Jawbone Up Move is that it gives its wearer access to the insights and analytics offered by the software.
It is simple and intuitive to use, showing two main columns on the home screen that display the amount of sleep and steps the wearer has achieved that day, together with a percentage of how close to their daily goal they are.
A third calorie counting column can also be added by those willing to manually input what they eat and drink. Until a more efficient way of measuring calories is added - such as scanning the barcode of the food you are about to eat - then this feature looks destined to be the domain of only the most hardcore fitness fanatics.
Jawbone has also integrated its app with the Health app in iOS 8, meaning owners of the latest iPhones can choose to use the device on either the Up or the Health app.
Up Move Display
The Up Move doesn't have a display as such, but it is able to convey information through a series of LED lights on its front.
By pressing or holding the button in different variations it can convey how many of the daily goals have been achieved.
It can even act as a time piece, albeit a vague one. By pressing the front button twice it signals the time to the nearest five minutes through two lights - a solid one for the hour and a flashing one for the minute.
Up Move Price and Conclusion
In the nascent wearables industry, Jawbone along with Fitbit and Garmin, can be considered old hats. However smartphone manufacturers such as Sony, Samsung and soon Apple, together with small startups putting out their own offerings, are snapping at their heels.
To stay on top Jawbone needs to not only improve its devices - which it is seeking to do with the Up3 - but also improve its range.
It has managed to achieve this with the Up Move. With its functional display, discreet wearability and gateway to the excellent Up app, the Up Move is hands down the best budget fitness tracker on the market.
However, the fact that the strap must be bought separately for £11 pushes the total price above £50. Looking briefly online for deals on the original Jawbone Up, it is actually possible to buy the superior tracker for less than this new offering. It could well be that Jawbone is inadvertently pushing itself out of the market.