October 03, 2013, 6:00 AM —
I was at my doctor's the other day and he told me I needed to get more exercise. One of the dangers of working from home is that you can pretty darned sedentary.
So I dug out my Fitbit Ultra activity tracker and promised myself I'd start using it, but so far I've been pretty hit or miss with it. The problem is I need to clip it somewhere and I'm constantly changing my clothes. I have my comfy but ratty work-at-home clothes and my going-out-in-public clothes and my walking-the-dog clothes and I only remember to switch the Fitbit to my new outfit about 70% of the time.
What I'd really like is something I could just wear on my person, and Fitbit does make the Flex which you wear on your wrist like a watch. The Flex would be perfect but it doesn't track altitude, and I find walking a few relatively flat miles around a local lake feels a lot different from walking the same number of miles in the hilly terrain near our apartment complex.
What I want is a form factor like the Flex, with the functionality of the Ultra.
And it would seem that my prayers will soon be answered. Over at TheVerge a new Fitbit device, the Fitbit Force, was outed. This isn't an official product announcement but it seems like a pretty solid leak.
The Fitbit Force is worn on your wrist and has all the usual Fitbit tracking functions: steps take, distance traveled, calories burned, amount of sleep, and stairs climbed. It also shows the time, which is a nice feature for something you're going to be wearing on your wrist anyway. It's at least partially waterproof and TheVerge says it has a nicer display than the Flex.
It'll also be a bit more money: $129 (the Flex and the Fitbit One, which replaced the Ultra that I have, are both $100) but for me at least, another $30 is worth the extra convenience of something that I wear on my wrist and that does everything I want it to do.
We don't know when (or technically, even if) the Fitbit Force will become available but TheVerge suggests it could be fairly soon based on the amount of materials they seen. I'll be keeping a watch on the Fitbit site and will let you know when the Force shows up.
If you're interested in learning more you can head over to TheVerge for the full story and a few more images.
Read more of Peter Smith's TechnoFile blog and follow the latest IT news at ITworld. Follow Peter on Twitter at @pasmith. For the latest IT news, analysis and how-tos, follow ITworld on Twitter and Facebook.