This year has certainly been the year of the wearable with an absolute onslaught of devices becoming available. The sheer majority of these seem to be smartwatches, but there also seems to be a number of fitness tracking devices hitting the market. One of the trackers which received a good deal of attention this year was the Misfit Shine which was marketed as "the world's most elegant physical activity monitor". This device was rather pretty with a sleek circular look which when worn did look like a smartwatch. However with a price tag of $100 you are starting to edge into the smartwatch price bracket.
Misfit, the company behind the Shine seem to be aware that price may be an issue for just a fitness tracker and have now released a much more budget friendly version of the device, the Misfit Flash and costing only $50. In spite of being half the price of the Shine, the Flash seems to pack a punch in terms of features which include a sporty design which comes in seven colors options. The device is waterproof (up to 30m) and measures daily activity and sleep. The Flash will sync with your smartphone and show typical data such as steps taken, distance traveled and calorie burn. The device tracks the user during a number of sports and activities including walking, running, swimming, cycling, soccer, tennis, basketball and others. The device is wearable in a number of places including the wrist, lapel, shirt, pants, and pockets or on a necklace (which can be purchased as a separate accessory). However, one of the more interesting features (similar to the Shine) is the Flash does not require any charging at all. Unlike most wearables, this device comes with a 'normal' battery' which is expected to last up to six months. After this users can simply replace the battery. One of the most notably difference between the Shine and Flash is the build material of the device. The Shine was loaded with aircraft grade aluminium while the newer Flash is built from a soft touch plastic. This is probably one of the ways in which they were able to keep the price down.
The device is available now on pre-order for $49.99 and is expected to ship mid-October and should be available through all the major stores including Best Buy, Target and Amazon. It is worth noting though that three of the seven colors (Reef, Fuchsia and Zest) will be exclusively available at Best Buy. If you live in Canada you will be able to pick up the device for C$49.99 and will be available both online and in-store at Best Buy while only available online at both MEC and Future Shop. So $50 for a fitness tracker! Any takers?