Sunday, October 27, 2019

Motiv Fitness Ring

Motiv Fitness Ring

Motiv Fitness Ring
Motiv Fitness Ring

Using technology to learn about your health, everyone wants a smartwatch or even a fitness band. Fortunately, it's 2019, so someone figured out how to wrap that technology around your finger.

Motiv Ring. When I first see this Ring at the CES launching event, it was so small, that I thought it was a show-floor dummy. It's hard to believe there's
any technology in here, let alone a battery big enough to power it.


Most of that is invisible. The accelerometer is internal, and the optical heart-rate sensor faces your finger when being worn.

So the only evidence this is more than a regular ring
is a single LED, which is usually off. The whole package is encased in a titanium outer shell rated waterproof to five atmospheres.

If I had to find one complaint about the hardware, it's that, I guess, it's a little wide; otherwise, it's as refined as it gets. To put that hardware to use, you need to fire up the Motiv app.


Motiv Fitness Ring
Motiv Fitness Ring

Instead of just counting your steps, the app blends that data with the continuous heart-rate tracking to get any info of how many active minutes you log during the day.

The American Heart Association recommends about 30 active minutes a day, five days out of the week. The app periodically gives you cards, letting you know how close you are to hitting that goal, or if it needs you to confirm that it's an activity it tracked was correct, it'll throw up a card for that, too. The Ring syncs with your phone automatically via Bluetooth, and if you want, you can force sync.

by spinning it around on your finger three times, which is quite fun. Also, because the Ring is so small and light, it's a pretty great sleep tracker. I wore it alongside a Fitbit Ionic for my three-day review period, and each morning I enjoyed checking each one to see how well I'd slept, quantified by my resting heart rate and how much I'd moved during the night. Two out of two trackers agree: I need more sleep. 
Motiv Fitness Ring
Motiv Fitness Ring


Since I brought up the competition, Motiv does lag behind in features. Fitbit offers more data about your health at almost every level; it's backed up by a massive community of users, and it lets you track your stats in realtime. Wearable's review of the Motiv Ring points out.

Again there aren't many hardware downsides, but the Ring is reportedly prone to scratches on the finish, and it doesn't last as long as many fitness bands. Motiv quotes three days per charge, which my unit fell just two hours. I do have to say that's pretty impressive, considering how tiny this battery is. A recharge takes 80 minutes, using an intelligent and small USB charger. It's tough to see any shortcomings in a device that costs 200 bucks,
but Motiv does have some overhead here. 

Every buyer first gets a sizing kit in the mail to match Ring to finger, and each Ring also comes with two chargers: one for
Home and one for your keychain. More to the point, the Motiv Ring packs the same technology as some fitness bands in a much smaller prettier package. If you wear a fitness band or a smartwatch already, you'll probably find this redundant. Still, if you don't wear one of those, maybe because they're too bulky or flashy, the Motiv Ring is the fitness tracker you've been waiting for, perhaps just a glimpse into the future of many more connected wearable devices.


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