Sony SmartBand SWR10-1One of the so-called “wearable devices” creating a buzz is the Sony SmartBand SWR10 Activity Tracker. It was first introduced in January at the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas and then later with more details at the end of February at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain. Sony stated it was expected to be ready for retail sometime in March. True to their word, I see it is now finally available on Amazon. Being such a new product, there are no customer feedback available yet, but I have scoured reputable news sites to provide you with all valuable information to date.

I must confess that the Sony SmartBand SWR10 has peaked my interest. Why? Well, not only does it track the typical fitness activities like steps taken, calories burned, sleep quality and so on but it literally can log your life much like a life journal but that you can visually replay. Has it now peaked your interest too?
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Table of Contents
Click ahead!
1. New Product Info 2. Android Connectivity 3. Buttons & Controls
4. Tracking Modes 5. Ways To Wear 6. Items Included & Accessories
7. Dimensions & Weight 8. The Battery 9. Pros
10. Cons 11. Consumer Reviews 12. Price

All-In-One Activity Tracker, Life Journal & More

Apparently responding to consumer demand wanting more than fitness and health tracking wearable devices, Sony has come out with the Sony SmartBand SWR10 that along with its Lifelog app is capable of logging not only your physical but also your social and entertainment activities.

As An Activity Tracker

As an activity tracker, the Sony SmartBand with its Lifelog app tracks your daily activities like steps taken, distance travelled, speed, sleep quality, heart rate, time spent walking, running, cycling, driving and even sitting (with the ability to automatically detect the different activities) – to name a few. It will track points earned based on your daily activities. You can set your daily goals and check your progress.

As A Life Journal

Sony SmartBand SWR10 Lifelog appAs mentioned before, the Sony SmartBand with its Lifelog app literally lets you log your life. To be more specific, it will log where you’ve been, who you were with, when you were commuting and in what type of vehicle, photos or videos you took, music you listened to, movies you watched, your communications and even the weather of the day. It can also help you plan the day ahead showing you upcoming events and, again, what weather is in store. Awesome, yes?

Another really cool feature (that I really love!) named “Life Bookmark” allows you to tag the special moments of your life so you can replay them on your smartphone or tablet and remember them forever. Want to remember a special date at a restaurant where you had a really superb meal, who you were with, what song was playing. Just “life bookmark” it.

Then at the end of the day (or anytime you want really) you can scroll through your Life Bookmarks and replay them and even edit them if you want to add additional details, for example, on a photo taken. I find this very intriguing that you can get to replay special moments of your life with all the cherished details.

As More

The Sony SmartBand SWR10 interacts with the Android Lifelog app and smartphone or tablet as both a control and extension of them. It will vibrate to let you know of an incoming call and can control media and other applications on your smartphone such as, a smart camera, a media player, a presentation slide show or music playing to your headphones.

Smartphone & Tablet Connectivity

Compatibility requirements are:

  • Android 4.4 or later
  • Bluetooth® 4.0 Low Energy (BLE)
  • Lifelog app (available through the Google Play)
  • Smart Connect app

The Sony SmartBand SWR10 is compatible only with Android smartphones and tablets. It is not compatible with iOS devices (as an iOS user, I say “Boo and Hiss!”). Users of any Android device running 4.4 and later will be able to use SmartBand. You just need to insert the Core accelerometer sensor unit (which does the actual movement tracking) inside the wristband and connect to your smartphone via Bluetooth.

Once connected the Lifelog app starts collecting data from the device to your smartphone. The Core will keep saving data even if not connected to your mobile devices or out of range right up until it is connected again when it will pass on the data.

Buttons & Controls

Sony SmartBand SWR10-2The Sony SmartBand SWR10 has no display, just 3 small white LED lights and one button (or key) on the side of the wristband. Press the button to turn the unit off and on, switch from sleep to day mode or mute an incoming call. By pressing the button, you can also “life bookmark” a special moment or event you want to remember and the Lifelog app will log everything going on at that time and place.

You can either press the button or tap the wristband to control media functions such as play, pause or skip to the next track on your walkman app.

It will vibrate to notify you of incoming calls or texts or tweets.

The Sony SmartBand also has a smart alarm which means it is able to calculate the best time based on your sleep cycle to wake you up with a gentle vibration.

On your smartphone or tablet, the Lifelog app will show a timeline of your day’s activities. You can swipe to the left or to the right for different points in time. The bottom half of your smartphone screen displays tiles with the daily totals for your different activities. The top half of your mobile device screen features a little animation that will change according to your activity at the moment. So if you are walking, you will see a figure walking and if you are sleeping, the figure will be sleeping, and so on. Love this!

Tracking Modes

Sony-Smarband-girl

  • Steps taken
  • Distance traveled
  • Route mapping
  • Activity speed
  • Activity time
  • Calories burned
  • Heart rate
  • Sleep quality (tracks deep sleep, light sleep and awake time)
  • Smart alarm

Ways To Wear

Designed to be worn 24/7, the Sony SmartBand SWR10 is light and flexible. Even the Core unit, which is about the size of a small USB, is curved to allow a more comfortable fit. The removable Core unit can even be worn by itself clipped to a belt or a shoe.

It is also water and dust IP58 certified. IP or Ingress Protection is a rating system that lets you know how dustproof or waterproof a device is. The first number indicated the level of dust resistance with 6 being the highest level. The second number indicates the water-resistance level with 9 being the highest level. So taking a shower with the Sony SmartBand on will pose no problem, but even though the IP rating suggests that it can be submerged underwater up to about a depth of 1 meter for 30 minutes, I would hesitate to do so until I research more reviews as they will become available.

Two metal studs or pegs are said to keep the wristband securely in place. Already I read a report complaining that the wristband is difficult to put on as the pegs do not go easily in, but I’m willing to suffer the frustration of putting the wristband on as long as it stays securely in place.

Sony SmartBand SWR10 package

What You Get

Included with your purchase of the Sony SmartBand SWR10:

  • Removable Core unit which you insert into the wristband
  • 2 black silicone wristbands in sizes small (214 mm long) and large (250 mm long)
  • Free Android Lifelog app (available from the Google Play store)

Accessories Sold Separately (soon to be available):

  • Wristband in a choice 9 colors – white, light pink, pink, blue, dark green, purple, orange, yellow and black (SmartBand Core and metal fastener not included)
  • Wristband available in different finishes (with imitation leather being one)

Dimensions & Weight

The small wristband measures 214 mm long and weighs 20 grams including the Core.
The large wristband is 250 mm long and weighs 21 grams including the Core.
The Core unit measures 40.7 x 15.3 x 7.8 mm and weighs 6 grams.

Battery

The lithium polymer 35mA battery is rechargeable and needs to be recharged about every 5 days by using the micro-USB port, the same socket used by Sony’s phones. It takes about an hour to recharge.

Pros

  • Core unit will work in a variety of devices
  • Will connect to a variety of apps
  • More than a health tracker, acts like a life journal and planner
  • Logs special moments in life to remember forever
  • Vibrates to notify of incoming call or messages
  • Waterproof and dustproof to IP58 specifications
  • Smart alarm that goes off 30 minutes before the time you set depending on your state of sleep
  • Stylish, discreet, light and comfortable to wear
  • Lifelog app features a great layout

Cons

  • No display
  • No time display
  • Difficult to put wristband on as the pegs don’t go in easily
  • No feedback yet on its accuracy
  • Not compatible with iOS mobile devices
  • Only compatible with Android smartphones and tablets
  • Not compatible with computers and online dashboards
  • Concern over NSA accessing your personal data, although Sony is a Japanese company so NSA supposedly cannot touch its collected data

Sony SmartBand SWR10 Activity Tracker Consumer Reviews

Since it just came on the market this month (March 2014) there are no customer reviews yet on Amazon. However, it made a good first impression with most of the industry insiders who attended the CES and MWC shows in January and February. So that can only bode well for its future success but I will keep checking on any customer feedback coming in and updating it here.

What is the Price of the Sony SmartBand SWR10 Activity Tracker?

At the time of this review it is priced on Amazon at slightly under $100. That seems a fair price in comparison to somewhat similar products and considering all its features and the fact that it is more than just a fitness tracker.

Filed under: Reviews

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