Misfit Tips $20 Flash Link Activity Tracker

16 Jul 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Fitness Tracking Gets Dirt Cheap: $20 for a Misfit Flash.

For a company like Misfit, which got its start as the maker of an attractive health and fitness monitoring device that women would actually like to wear, it may no longer be enough to be just another Fitbit competitor.Misfit, the California-based wearables company behind popular low-cost fitness and sleep trackers Flash and Shine announced today a new $20 variant of its lowest-priced product.

It’s called the Misfit Flash Link, and the small circular device allows you to control several things — the song you’re playing on Spotify, the camera function on your phone, presentations and more — all using a built-in button mechanism and a paired smartphone running the new Misfit Link app. That’s why the company has been more recently expanding its product lineup to include a range of connected devices, including also a sleep monitoring system and connected lightbulbs, for example. Dubbed Flash Link, the hardware is identical to the now-$30 Flash, but eschews the sports band in favour of a simple clip that can be worn inside a pocket, or attached to a collar or sleeve. And today that expansion continues as Misfit unveils “Misfit Link,” a new software application that lets you use a Misfit activity tracker as a smart button that can do things like control your music, your phone’s camera, and soon, Logitech Harmony smart home devices, and more. The $20 Flash Link, as this packaging of Flash will be called, includes the same durable, waterproof fitness tracker that tells time and other info with a circle of 12 LEDs, doubles as a button for smart-home devices and runs for 6 months on a battery charge.

The new product also goes in hand with Misfit Link, a new iOS app that allows the Flash’s single button to act as activator for a number of smart home services, including turning on lights with Philips Hue, changing songs on Spotify, or taking a photo with one’s smartphone camera. To accompany the launch of the Link software, Misfit is also introducing a new, low-cost activity tracker it’s calling the Flash Link, which is now the least expensive device the company sells at $19.99. It uses a built-in sensor to keep track of how long, and how vigorously, you’re moving about while the device is pocketed or worn with an included clip. The older Flash and the high-end Misfit Shine are getting price cuts today, too – the Flash is now $30 and the Shine is now $70, down from $50 and $100, respectively. And because there’s no display, it uploads that data to a free smartphone app over Bluetooth so you can keep tabs on how active or lazy you’re being.

For example, the Flash can be used to start and stop playlists on Spotify, secure an August Smart Lock, send a command to IFTTT, or snap a selfie in Snapchat. When it comes to fitness tracking, the Flash tracks steps, distance traveled and sleep quality, as well as an estimate of calories burned. (Jawbone’s rival tracker, the $50 Up Move, lacks the smart-home and app controls.) Misfit’s slightly pricier tracker—the Shine—is also coming down, from $100 to $70. As previously mentioned the Link app is only available for iOS at this point in time, Android users are going to have to wait until August to use the smart button capabilities of these wearable devices. While the Shine’s sturdy metal body makes it capable of going deeper into the water than its plastic sibling, its rigidness means there’s no smart-home/app button.

Justin Butler, Misfit’s VP of commercial development, declined to say how many Shine and Flash trackers have sold to date but he did say the price cuts are not motivated by lagging sales. “We want as many people as possible to use this technology—health, fitness, sleep, the smart home and Internet of things,” Butler said. “There’s no reason the only ones who should be able to benefit from this technology are the people who can afford $100 trackers.” Follow WSJ.D on Twitter, and get our Personal Technology columns delivered right to your inbox. The Company was founded in 2011 by Sonny Vu with John Sculley, the former CEO of Apple and Pepsi, and Sridhar Iyengar, co-founder and former CTO of AgaMatrix.

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