You might not know it if you don't regularly peruse the less-traveled sections of your local electronics store, but Garmin and its competitors have been making impressively sophisticated GPS watches for years. They only escaped the "smartwatch" label because the buzzword hadn't been invented yet. Now Garmin, like Timex, is approaching the smartwatch from the other end, adding more and more features onto a design that's been present for quite a while.
It's amazing that more than a decade after the rise of "gadget blogs," gigantic international corporations still don't tick the little "confidential" mark when submitting their gadgets for certification by the Federal Communications Commission. Keep it up, folks, it gives us peeks at upcoming hardware like the Lenovo SW-B100 Smartband. This wearable was previously spotted going through the Bluetooth SIG's series of tests, and rumored for an IFA debut, which didn't happen.
There are lots of fitness bands to choose from: the Jawbone UP, Fitbit Flex, Nike Fuelband...and many others. If you're a Runtastic user, however, there's a new one on the market that may interest you, the Runtastic Orbit. As you may have already guessed, this one is built from the ground up for use with Runtastic's services – running, cycling, etc. It doesn't yet work with the company's dedicated cycling apps (road biking, mountain biking), but support for those is currently in the works.
You couldn't swing a dead cat at Mobile World Congress back in February without hitting a smartwatch or a fitness band. (Not that you would want to. Barcelona probably has some kind of municipal ordinance against dead feline hurling.) After teasing us with the companion app, Sony has finally released the Smartband SWR10 in the US. This screenless Bluetooth activity tracker will cost you a C-note on Sony's online store, and it should be showing up at other retailers soon.
Are there just not enough wearable options in your life? Well, LG is going to be getting into the game come May 18th. The company's previously announced Lifeband Touch and corresponding Heart Rate Earphones will be on sale at that time to augment your person.
These devices were announced back at CES 2014, but now we've got a release date. The Lifeband Touch is mostly a fitness tracker with a small OLED screen, but it can also pipe in all your notifications and do a few other tricks.
It seems we're awash in fitness and activity trackers of late, and Kickstarter has been home to a number of such devices in the past year. FlyFit, another such product, just surpassed its $90,000 funding goal this morning, so backers should hopefully be seeing a product at some point.
FlyFit's primary claim to fame is that it's a fitness tracker designed exclusively to be worn around the ankle, as opposed to the wrist.
The smartwatch craze has gotten a little out of hand, if you'll pardon the pun. Various manufacturers and innumerable crowdfunding campaigns seem ready to leap into the shallow waters already populated by Pebble, Sony, Fitbit and the like. Just because Samsung's Galaxy Gear is the most mainstream of these wearable devices doesn't mean it's the best - on the contrary, in addition to general dissatisfaction with the somewhat rushed hardware, many reviewers found themselves questioning the need for a relatively powerful and feature-filled device on their wrist.
Fitbit's Android app is useless without a matching fitness device to pair it with, but buying one without having a phone that supports it means having to rely on your computer for synching. That's less than desirable, so it's a good thing that the company is steadily working to expand the number of Android phones its products will support. Following the latest update to the Fitbit app, Moto G owners can now sync their handset up to a Fitbit accessory.
It's all about the wearable tech these days, right? The market certainly isn't lacking in fitness trackers, but the folks behind Atlas claim to have a better product. Atlas is packed with sensors to monitor your movements along all three axes. That movement data allows Atlas to actually figure out what exercise you're doing and how well.
There are plenty of companies that are working on building you tablets and phones, but only one Android OEM is concerned with "localizing" your dog – Archos. But it's not just your dog that Archos wants to make smarter with a little dash of technology. The device maker has announced an array of connected home devices that will be officially detailed at the upcoming CES event in Las Vegas. There are even going to be some smart watches in the mix, because why not?