The fitness tracking wearable is far from a new concept. Basic devices such as heart rate monitoring wristwatches have been around for decades, while the last few years have seen an explosion of smartwatches and other wearable tech that either cater for, or are specifically designed for fitness enthusiasts. However, while the Vidameter may look like just another wearable, it actually has a much bigger mandate in mind, aiming to take a hand in personal safety and general well-being as well as fitness.
The device itself, which takes the form of a flexible polymer wrist band, aims to provide all the features of conventional fitness trackers, while augmenting them with those found in wearable tech devices and other healthcare products. It can reportedly be used by anyone from children to the elderly, and is controlled by means of a 1.55-inch, 222 ppi OLED touch screen, supported by LED status indicators and vibration alerts.
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The wearable is powered by an octa-core ARM Cortex A53 chip, weighs just 34g, runs on a proprietary Vidamet OS, and features a total of nine sensors for grabbing all those vital signs. The smartband’s creators claim that the device will run for 7-10 days on a single charge. It's designed to measure the well-being of the wearer at all times, not just during exercise.
How are you?
On the fitness side of things, the smartband tracks the user’s pulse, blood oxygen saturation, blood flow rate, levels of activity, calories burned, steps taken and even skin temperature. The product is also water-resistant to a depth of 300 meters (984 ft). During exercise, the software analyzes the data being collected and provides recommendations to the user regarding their current vital state.
For example, when running, the Vidameter will track your speed, distance, steps taken and your pulse, but unlike many products, will warn you if you’re overdoing it. In addition to this, the device has a focus on user safety, and integrates full emergency alerting.
If you’re injured while wearing the Vidameter, it will detect the situation and automatically call for help, pushing data on the user’s physical condition and location to the emergency workers before they arrive on the scene. The company even claims that the wearable will be able to perform other safety-orientated functions, such as warning the wearer if they’re too tired to drive.
The product’s designers are also pitching it as an option for easy barcode scanning, keyless entry and cashless shopping. They additionally have security in mind, as all data stored on the band is encrypted, and only the user themselves are able to access it (although they can share it when and if they wish). The smartband doesn’t require a smartphone or computer to function, though they are recommended for a more thorough analysis of collected data.
It’s clear from the above that the Vidameter is an extremely ambitious product, and one with a wide range of applications. Pit it against competing products such as the Samsung Gear Fit or the Fitbit Force, and it’s clear that the crowd-funded newcomer has a lot going for it.
Predictably, there is a bit of a catch – as an Indeigogo project, it will have to hit its funding target if it’s ever to see the light of day, and unfortunately the funding target is every bit as ambitious as the product itself.
At the time of writing, the crowd-funding effort for the smartband has accumulated just US$4,000 in funding – less than one percent of its $1,000,000 target. That said, the project has only been going a few days and is bound to pick up stream as it moves towards its June 12 deadline.
If it does reach its funding goal, then you can expect to see the Vidameter in December 2015, retailing at a price of $319 plus shipping (although you can currently reserve one for a pledge of $159).
Check out the project’s Indiegogo page and video below for more on the Vidameter, and head to the comments to let us know whether you’re interested in backing this ambitious wearble.