Jawbone UP24

Jawbone's latest has to be worth your attention if you're looking for a fitness band

Everybody wants to make a wearable and the health and fitness space has had its fair share in recent times with efforts from the likes of Nike and Fitbit. What we have here is the latest effort from Jawbone, the UP24. And if you're looking for a fitness band – especially one to hook into your Android phone – it's worth your attention.

It may not be much to look at, but it packs a punch where it matters. Let's take a closer look.

The band

First things first; compatibility. Your Android phone will need to have Bluetooth 4.0 to use with the UP24, so if you're not making the grade there, sorry. This isn't the band for you right now. Jawbone has a handy web page to help you get started, but it's not a complete compendium of compatible phones. Ultimately you'd have to try it out on your particular phone first.

It isn't a lot to look at but the UP24 is remarkably comfortable to wear. The overlapping design at the thinner end makes putting it on and taking it off a breeze while keeping it attached to your wrist nice and snug. It has enough flex to be easy to manoeuvre but isn't 'elastic.'

There's no display at all and no real controls to speak of. The 'Jawbone' logo is removable to expose the charging port and the silver square on the other 'end' of the band is the only button to operate. You only need to operate it to activate the band or put it into sleep mode. That's all there is to it. In terms of battery life, Jawbone says you need to charge it up once every seven days, which seems about right, and you're able to check the battery life within the app whenever the band is connected to your phone.

The Jawbone UP24 also comes in a choice of different colors to suit your own tastes. The one I've got here is a pretty vivid shade of orange, but there is also a less in-your-face black version to be had.

The app

Before we actually get to the app, there's a caveat to using it. Android 4.3 and above. Sure, for many folks reading Android Central on a regular basis that's not a big deal. But my LG G2 hasn't been updated beyond 4.2.2 yet – albeit mostly because of my own lazyness – and so I can't use the UP24 with it. What's perhaps more irritating is that because the app is also for managing the first generation UP, you're able to download it from the Play Store even if you don't meet the requirements.

It does say – in albeit pretty small text – on the packaging under System Requirements that you need Android 4.3. But a big sticker on the front of the box would have been a bit clearer.

Jawbone UP

Once you're into the app, though, it's not half bad. As with most things nowadays you need to create an account first. But once you're through that, the app is all you need to manage everything. UP24 can be used to track exercise – be that how many steps you take during a day or specific workouts – but it can also be used to track your sleep.

You track your sleep by holding down the button on the band until the corresponding lights flash. Do this when you're hitting the hay and the next morning you'll have a pretty comprehensive overview of your slumber. Turns out I wake up in the night more than I thought I did! Not having a full nights sleep? No worries, hit the button twice then hold it in and you enable power nap mode.

Looking at more physical activities, you can easily tailor the UP app to record your activities based on a range of pre-loaded workouts. I'll admit, I'm not the most active of people, but the pre-loaded selections cover everything from walking to Tennis via Yoga and Skiing.

Once the UP24 has collected the data there's a host of interpretations you can look at, like trends, your "lifeline" of total activity, and adjust your daily goals for activity and sleep on the fly. Perhaps more exciting is the amount of third party apps you can plug your UP data into.

Popular choices such as MyFitnessPal, Strava and RunKeeper are compatible, as are a bunch of other apps. I have used MyFitnessPal in the past with limited success syncing Fitbit data, but the addition of activity tracking to something which helps track your diet and overall exercise is a great thing to have.

The bottom line

All in all, the Jawbone UP24 is an excellent fitness tracker. It's comfortable to wear, and while I'm not crazy on the design – a wider, flatter band would be preferable to me – the fact it's easy to forget you're wearing it is a credit. The Jawbone UP app is full featured, easy to use, and you're offered a plethora of third-party options to plug your data in to.

The UP24 just recently launched in the UK around the £120 mark, which isn't cheap, but it is a decent chunk of change cheaper than the Nike Fuelband. And much less awkward on your wrist. It is more expensive than a Fitbit Flex, though. However, if a fitness band is what you want, definitely give it a look.

Buy Now: Jawbone UP24 - £120

 

Reader comments

Jawbone UP24 review

16 Comments

Thats not a bad price, considering the UP v1 was £99 for, well, ages.
I'm liking the idea of being compatible with other fitness apps too, thats a big bonus for it. I know a lot of people on G+ and Facebook who post their Strava results for the day. (Show offs.) Half the other guys in my store have either an UP or some other wrist gadget that monitors to an equal or lesser extent.

p.s. update your G2, the only difference I've noticed is the notification bar icons are white, not blue. And the mini settings button has moved to the top right when you open the notification bar. :) I even wasted my time backing up the phone. Didn't need to it seems.

It's because I need to do it using LG's awful Windows software. Which means borrowing my wife's laptop, and, eh, I like it OK enough as it is lol

So this thing is a pedometer and sleep tracker? Does it actually track calories burned or anything else? Seems over priced for a glorified pedometer really if that's all it does. No heart rate monitor or calories burned s kinda lame imo

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The app shows calories burned at rest and active calories burned. I'd share a screenshot but this app won't let me.

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Have the original UP. Its great. The app is a bit clunky when it comes to adding food though. Neat competition with people you know. Waterproof is the best part along with battery life. I had one die six months after getting and they sent me a new one no questions. Great customer service.

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I've used this but had to return it because of my work. I'm really active at work always using my arms to lift, move things, etc and every little movement I'd make it would count as a step, so by the end of the day I'd have some crazy amount of steps taken and inaccurate readings. So if your really active in activity's, work, sports, etc it won't work for you.

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Richard you wrote a really good review because the UP24 does most of the UP second-gen band with new twists, and you definitely described some of the features well. BUT... this is the buyer beware complaint post, one I wish I didn't have to make because, in spirit, this product really can do some good stuff.

The original UP band was pulled completely off the market and people refunded because it worked so bad. Google it and you'll see what I mean.

I gave the UP second gen band a chance. I am on my fourth UP second gen band in less than a year. My wife? On her third. This is not an uncommon issue or fluke issue. MANY people have it. Even some doctors my wife and I have who use it. Too many people with that issue for it to be a one-time lemon issue. Now, that said, the customer service is absolutely outstanding, Fill out the form, do a couple of things they ask you to (like soft/hard reboots), and then they send you out a new band and then you receive it and send the old one back. So on the customer service? Six stars out of five. They are very good. Best customer service ever.

Point is, that's two generations of bands with serious issues. This new third generation one has a lot of promise and hope and really sounds awesome, but call me scared to go out and get one, knowing what I've experienced the last two times. What have they done to address the issues of the second gen? Heck, is it the exact same band with just a bluetooth capability slapped in? Will the same customer service continue? They're questions someone, somewhere on the Internet has to answer. Maybe you can get that Richard? Who knows. But I would just have serious reservations about buying the UP24 and I would really, really hate to see people waste their hard-earned money on it and end up having some sort of significant issue where they're going spurts of time without it.

I want to believe in this product and consider upgrading, but I've been scarred by their second-gen product and the known knowledge of their first-gen recall to want to actually get UP24. I guess I will have to give it time and see how this truly plays out. I hope they fixed their issues, but again, I'm scared they truly haven't.

sent mine back....... wave my arm and it is a footstep and walk on the treadmill holding the rails and no steps are recorded. I summary was only useful for tracking sleep. I want a complete tracker with heart rate and option to move so real footsteps are counted.

Unless these fitness bands can monitor heart rate, blood pressure, and calories, I really don't see why you need them when there are phone apps that do the same job.

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I have a fitbit and I bought my wife the up24. I have to say the up does not do a great job with the pedometer. It is not accurately tracking her steps. But it's app and user interface are great. On top of the sleep tracker and pedometer, you can log your food and track your eating habits with it. I use myfitnesspal integrated with my fitbit....but this does it with one app. If they can be more accurate on the pedometer then I would say this is better. Looking at getting the gear fit on Friday to compare

I’m on my second 2nd gen Up band, the first lasting from August last year until this February, before it simply decided to stop accepting a charge. Unfortunately, as others have commented, they seem somewhat prone to failure. Fortunately, and as others have mentioned, their customer service is amazing. Prior to buying, I sent an inquiry to both Jawbone and Fitbit; Jawbone responded within days, whereas Fitbit took weeks.

As for accuracy, sleep tracking is incredibly accurate and useful, at least for me. When measuring activity, as it is worn on the wrist, it does read some false positives (steps). I also have an Omron pedometer, which is worn on the belt or in a pocket, and which is incredibly accurate. When I first got the Up, I took it, and the Omron out for a walk, and counted each of my steps. After just shy of 1,900 (counted) steps, the Omron was off by 4 steps, and the Up was off by 17. If it’s for straight walking, then it’s pretty accurate. If it’s for general moving around (i.e. “life”), then it can read steps that never were.

I love my UP 24, yes, it mostly is a pedometer and my phone can do that as well, but I believe the UP24 to be much more accurate at determining a step, and other types of impact. The point though that made me excited and makes me really like it is two main functions. 1, the inactivity monitor is a life saver, it will vibrate after whatever amount of time, I use 30 min, and alert you to get off your butt and walk around a little. The second is an alarm clock function that will vibrate the band, and I find it much better for waking me up then my annoying alarm clock. The food/calorie tracking is terrible and my biggest complaint, it takes a great deal of work, and like most others, the failure is not the app, it's the number of restaurants and locations here in Southern California that do not post calories.

I was really interested in this but there are some really bad reviews up on amazon. Sounds like the up24 doesn't last more than a few months and people are having warranty claims. I'm disappointed to read such bad reviews.

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