Sony ups the fitness fight with SmartBand 2

Heart-rate equipped silicon wristband delivers sensor smarts

It might not win any prizes for imaginative product naming, but Sony’s latest foray into the fitness field packs specs which could win your heart.

At least, they might just get it racing. With a built-in optical heart-rate sensor and accelerometer, the SmartBand 2 can track your pulse whilst you run, walk, sleep, and, well, sit at your desk all day.

What’s more, Sony’s latest bit of wearable kit is IP68 certified which, for non-acronym fans, means it can take a good battering from dust and a 3m submersion in water for up to 30 minutes before coughing out.

Vibration delectation

Pairing with Sony’s slightly big brother-ish (in name at least) Lifelog app, the Japanese company’s second SmartBand iteration eschews a screen in favour of blinking LEDs to deliver alerts for calls, messages and emails, with vibrations to go with them.

Alongside its buzzing brilliance, the SmartBand performs all of the usual activity-tracking tricks of wearable tech, as well as logging your sleep, mood and stress level, and functioning as a smart alarm and music remote.

In a bid to take its battle to the likes of Jawbone and Fitbit, Sony is pitching the SmartBand as an all-hours, all-week companion – however, with a battery life of just two days (where other manufacturers are proving that tech timespans can be stretched much further) whether or not this dream will be realised will have to wait until we’ve had our hands on the new wrist-wrapper.

Smart tech for swimmers

Cross platform Xperia-nce

If you’re an Xperia phone user, you’ll be able to connect the two devices and the ‘Band will give you a buzz if you stroll more than 10m from your phone – no more handsets left on the bus, then (though we could see this becoming pretty annoying if you leave your phone at your desk).

For non-Sony smartphones, there’s an Android and an iOS app, and with the SmartBand 2 launching in 60 countries worldwide come September it seems Sony is keen up the stakes in the wearables war.

Priced initially at around the £90 mark, only time will tell whether Sony can sell the SmartBand on the undercut to rivals like the UP3 and Charge HR, both of which are marketed as 24/7 trackers.