Basis has announced a new wearable that aims to provide accurate, convenient and comprehensive fitness tracking. The new device pays more attention to fashion than we're used to from the category and promises smartwatch-like notifications.
UPDATE (4th August 2016): Intel has announced a recall of all Basis Peak fitness trackers after an overheating problem caused some users to suffer blisters or burns on their wrist. Users are advised to stop using their tracker immediately, and return it to Basis Science for a refund. Details on how to do that can be found on the Basis support pages.
The firm also says it is stopping support for Basis Peak immediately, though users can access their fitness data until December 31, 2016. After then, services will be turned off, meaning the watches can't sync, and become a very technical paperweight.
Basis Peak has a heavy fitness focus, with the ability to track motion, perspiration, skin temperature and heart rate. The Peak can detect exercise sessions such as walks, bike rides and runs, but it can also keep tabs on the wearer while he or she sleeps – capturing data on REM, periods of light and deep sleep, movements and interruptions. It's also water resistant up to 5 ATM.
The company's goal is to hit the sweet spot between form and function: a fitness tracker that you would feel comfortable wearing to work or out in the evening. The body of the watch is made from forged aluminum, with a soft silicone strap. The stock band is waterproof, meaning you leave the watch on when you go swimming, but it can also be swapped out for any 23 mm strap.
The Peak syncs with an iOS or Android app, connecting to a smartphone via Bluetooth. At launch, the app will let users delve into all the recorded data for each activity or night's sleep, but the company is also promising a future update that will allow users to view notifications for alerts such as calls or texts on the phone. Like many other current wearables, there's a vibration motor built into the watch, meaning you'll get a little jolt when an alert is received.
The device will be available in black with red accents and silver with white and gray detail. It's scheduled to launch in November for US$200.
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