Razer unveils low-cost Nabu X smartband
The Razer brand is generally associated more with gaming than fitness, but that hasn’t stopped the company from making moves into the smartband space. The Nabu X is its latest effort, with the second-generation fitness tracker offering limited notification support and some novel social functionality.
The Nabu X isn’t Razer’s first fitness tracker. It launched the original, OLED display-packing Nabu tracker back at CES 2014, and while that product hasn’t yet hit mass retail, the company is keen to expand its offering.
Like its predecessor, the Nabu X makes use of an accelerometer to keep track of steps walked, distance traveled, calories burned, active minutes and hours slept. However, it takes a notably different approach to notifications.
Where the original Nabu provided text previews of alerts on a small, inward-facing OLED display, the new model opts instead for three LEDs paired with a vibration motor. The band will vibrate when a notification is received, and users can customize which of the three colored lights will flick on, based on the type of alert.
It features a soft rubber finish with a watch-like single-size strap, and offers IP67 water resistance up to 1 meter (3.3 ft). There’s a sensor built in to detect when the user turns their wrist, activating the notification LEDs accordingly. The band also offers some interesting social functionality, allowing users to share and compare their activity data by touching the devices together.
The wearable links to both iOS and Android devices via Bluetooth Low Energy, tying into the company’s own app, which in turn provides a marketplace where compatible apps can be discovered. It’ll run for between five and seven days on a charge.
In a market as saturated as the fitness band space, what makes the Nabu X stand out is its price. While the original Nabu band was priced at US$100, the new LED-packing smartband will hit shelves for just $50. Furthermore, qualified fans at Razer’s Insider Forums will be able to snap up the wearable for just $20 starting January 13. Generally availability is expected in February.
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