Striiv Fusion is one of the few emerging fitness trackers with smartwatch functions such as notifications for incoming calls, and e-mail and other messages.
The Fusion looks much like any fitness tracker, with interchangeable wristbands (graphite, blue and red) and a tracking module.
The module's Oled ion-hardened glass touchscreen display (2.3cm by 1.4cm) shows fitness statistics as well as notifications. The tracking module can be easily pushed out of one wristband and popped into another.
At 16g, the device is almost weightless on your wrist. The band is comfortable to wear, but difficult to put on. It takes some effort to push the stainless steel clasp into the holes on the strap.
It is supposed to be splash-resistant. So you can wash your hands or shower with it, but not swim with it.
To pair this with your smartphone via Bluetooth, download the Striiv app (Android 4.3 or later and iOS 7.1 or later), launch the app and follow the onscreen instructions. The device must be inserted into the charging cradle (included) and plugged into a USB power source.
Once tracker and phone are paired, you can set a goal for steps taken and turn on notifications for incoming calls and text messages.
The app provides a daily weather forecast when you wake up. You can also set discreet vibrating alarms to avoid waking up your partner. But if you are a heavy sleeper like me, such an alarm may not work for you.
To see your progress, check the app or swipe the Fusion's display. The display goes to sleep within 3sec. Hold it briefly and it will wake up and show the time and date by default. Swipe to the left and you can toggle through steps taken, distance travelled, calories burned, activity movement and apps.
Tap the Apps icon for more options to monitor your progress, activate sleep tracking, view past notifications and change settings.
The display can be viewed in sunlight but sometimes fails to respond to touch commands. The display is small, so what it can show is limited. Unless a message is short, it is unlikely to be fully displayed.
In terms of tracking movement, the Fusion fared almost as well as the Nike+ FuelBand I wear every day, but recorded nearly 200 more steps per day.
Sleep tracking must be activated before bedtime and deactivated when you get up. The app is supposed to show you how many times you woke during the night, and whether you were in deep or light sleep. However, I could not quite believe that I awoke six times in one night as the Fusion suggested.
The advertised battery life is five days. Four days was more like it when the device was continuously connected to my smartphone for notifications.
The Striiv Fusion is a reasonably-priced fitness tracker that provides good value for money as an activity tracker with some smartwatch functions.
Water resistance: Splashproof
Value for money: 4/5
Battery life: 3/5
This article was first published on Feb 18, 2015.
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