When Sony launched the SmartBand earlier this year, it was their first foray into fitness tracking and wearable technology (outside of smartwatches, of course). It was a pretty ambitious idea from Sony, you were to wear the SmartBand on your wrist (powered by the tiny core that last for 5 or so days on a single charge) and it would work with your smartphone to track your entire day. Not just your steps and your calories burned, but where and when you took a photo, how long you spent on the phone, how long you spent watching cat videos on YouTube. Anything you did, Lifelog, the companion app to go with the SmartBand would track it.
Since then, LifeLog has gone through a number of updates, mostly bug fixes, and Sony has launched the SmartBand Talk to bridge the gap between smartwatch and fitness tracker, and the Android Wear-powered SmartWatch 3 will have access to Lifelog as well. Today though, Sony announced that the Lifelog API will soon be available to third-parties, which is pretty big news for fans of the service - such as myself - as this will expand the functionality of the SmartWear core as well as Lifelog itself. It's also coming to the Web, so that you can log and take a look at your activities on your laptop or your tablet, wherever you might be.
Sony's Mobile Blog sat down with Markus Eriksson, the man behind Lifelog and Sony's SmartWear to ask about the upcoming changes coming to Lifelog. He first went on to detail the opening of the Lifelog API to third-parties saying that "There really is no limit to areas Lifelog could provide user experiences within, whether that's personal training, medical aids, tourism apps, music playlists... or even dating apps... and that's quite exciting for us in terms of who we're partnering with." He went on to say that the API would be opening up soon, with Sony showing off use cases very shortly. I for one, am pretty excited to see Lifelog expand and work with other apps. I use Lifelog daily as a way to gauge how active I am, but I use Runtastic to track my daily brisk walk, and will turn to that when ready to take up running, but wouldn't it be great if Runtastic could show up in my Lifelog stream and vice-versa?
Speaking of the Lifelog stream, this will soon be heading to the Web, with the URL of lifelog.sonymobile.com already live with a Demo mode for you to play around with. Using HTML5 and a responsive design, Eriksson says that the new site will work with "your smartphone to your tablet to your TV...all you'll have to do is log in using your Sony Entertainment Network account." While the need for one more account has irked some users, it is a good way of syncing data without losing it, when I swapped to my new Xperia Z2 from my Nexus 5, I just logged in and all of my data was there. Being able to take a look at your day, week or month from your PC at work or your tablet at home would certainly extend the appeal of Lifelog, and with Google Fit looming, it's a good job that Sony is getting on the web app bandwagon.
Lifelog was, and still is, an interesting concept and I'm about ready to finalize my review of the SmartBand SWR10 and Lifelog after living with it for around a month, but to know that Sony is genuinely working on adding in new content, and opening things up to others makes me thing that Sony isn't just forgetting about Lifelog and their SmartWear. For fans of Sony's SmartBand and the Lifelog service, exciting things are ahead and the full interview below is well worth a read.