[Health Tech] REVIEW Misfit Speedo Shine

Following on from our initial Misfit Speedo Shine Release article and review of the older Misfit Shine we have now had enough time with the Misfit Speedo Shine to provide our opinion rather than merely hearsay.

The Review

Build & Appearance

The build quality of the Misfit Speedo Shine comes as no surprise as it shares pretty much everything other than a firmware change with is predecessor the Misfit Shine. What this means is that you get a compact aircraft grade aluminium body with 12 small white equi-spaced LEDs embedded, to form the hours of a clock face. This simple design provided both goal progress and time of day feedback. Unlike the Misfit Shine, the Misfit Speedo Shine only comes in one colour, namely anodized silvery grey, but this is not a bad thing, as this neutral colour reflects its solid construct.

q1
FunctionalityAs with the Misfit Shine, the Misfit Speedo Shine tracks movement, via a 3-axis accelerometer, which is then converted into points based on the activity that the user associates with it and automatically transitions into a sleep tracking mode at night. During sleep tacking the same accelerometers are used to record movement and convert it into restlessness and thus quality of sleep assessment.Activity TaggingAlthough activities cannot be set on the tracker, there are official iOS, Android and Windows Phone apps available where activities can be associated post recording and syncing.Within the mobile app users can associate a single activity type with a triple tap of the face of the Misfit Speedo Shine, which is then used to manually start/stop activity tracking. This is where the Misfit Speedo Shine comes into its own, expanding on the Misfit Shine basic swim tracking and adding lap tracking with the user setting the length of the pool within the mobile app, enabling calculation of total distance swum.q2A nice extra from the Misfit Speedo Shine manual activity tracking is that when in swim tracking mode with lap tracking enabled, the LED at the 6 o’ clock position flashes. This is something we had hoped for in all activity types from the Misfit Shine to let the user know they are in ‘Activity Tagging’ mode. As this is only the case for swim tracking we only ever user this mode for manual tracking and then change the activity afterwards within the mobile app. The problem is that the same light combination is used to let the user know they are entering our exciting manual tracking mode which we see as a negative. In our opinion it would be more intuitive to reverse the light combination between entering and exciting manual tracking.Time display on the Misfit Speedo ShineWithin the mobile app users can choose to be presented with the time, to the nearest 5 minutes, using the 12 LEDs as a watch face.q3Two taps of the face of the Misfit Speedo Shine cause the LED at the twelve o’clock position to illuminate brightly, with the LEDs at the 3, 6 and 9 o’clock positions to illuminate more dimly, to indicate watch face orientation. At the same time the LED in the relevant hour hand position illuminates brightly and the LED in the minute hand position flashes brightly. One thing to note, and something that can take a little time to get used to is that the hour LED remains at the hour position until the next hour is reached, so at 09:55 the LED at the 9 o’clock position will still be illuminated with the LED flashing at the 11 o’clock position. On a normal watch, the hour hand would now roughly be at the 10 o’clock positionWhat’s MissingOne noticeable absence from the Misfit options is a vibration motor to provide silent alarms and inactivity alerts. The good news is that this is coming to the Misfit Shine 2, but we are not able to persuade Misfit to tell us if a Misfit Speedo Shine 2 will follow as swimming lap tracking is not incorporated into the Misfit Shine 2.Mobile AppThe mobile app is discussed in our Misfit Shine Review, with the only change when using the Misfit Speedo Shine being that when swimming is selected as the preferred ‘Activity Tagging’ option the is an option to enable Speedo lap tracking and set the length of the pool you are swimming in.As we stated in our Misfit Shine Review, the Windows Phone app works, but lacks automatic background syncing and the more polished appearance, along with some other functionality provided in the iOS, Android and apps. We are hoping that this will change with time, but all we can do is wait and see.Our biggest issue with the Windows Phone app is that, accepting the lack of background syncing, manual syncing is not made easy as there is no auto sync on app opening and furthermore, users have to go into the menu system to sync as there is no sync option on the main screen. At least in the Android app you just drag down on the main to sync whilst the iOS supports background sync. We hope this will be added to the Windows Phone app soon as a minimum.In the longer term, automatic background synchronisation is essential to keep up with the competition.ConclusionAlthough the Misfit Speedo Shine has worked well with a good degree of accuracy of swimming lap tracking we struggle to advise you to buy one when the Misfit Shine 2 is being released with features (vibration feedback, brighter LEDs providing visibility in clear sunlight, etc.) we noted lacking from its predecessor.q4
If you want these new features we would advise you to wait for a possible Misfit Speedo Shine 2, although we can’t how long the wait will be.If you don’t want to wait and need an activity tracker that can track your swimming as well as activity/steps and sleep that looks good and doesn’t cost the earth go for the Misfit Speedo Shine. You can always upgrade if/when the Misfit Speedo Shine 2 is released.Positives:

  • Manufactured from aircraft grade aluminium
  • 50m water resistant so you can swim in it
  • Lap tracking when swimming
  • Simple, but elegant, interface
  • Many aftermarket wearability options
  • No need to charge. Replaceable standard coin cell battery lasts up to 6 months

Negatives:

  • No background auto sync on Android or Windows Phone (iOS only) like provided by completing products.
  • No auto sync on app opening
  • LEDs are not clearly visible in direct sunlight.
  • No digital display
  • No vibration feedback

VerdictBuild: *****The Misfit Speedo Shine shares it’s materials of construction and overall design and build with the Misfit Shine. Therefor, as stated in our Misfit Shine review, the materials of construction and many wearability options, including after-sales cause it to score highly here.Functionality:         ****The ability to wear the Misfit Speedo Shine whilst swimming and lap tacking resulting from the Speedo partnership increases it’s score although the lack of a more informative digital display and reduced functionality Windows Phone app make it a mid 4-star rating. This would be a high 4-star rating for users of the Android and iOS apps.Affordability:          ****Although the Misfit Speedo Shine is twice the price of the Misfit Flash with a limited increase in functionality its price is aligned to its build quality, elegance and sits in a solid position between the likes of the Fitbit Flex and Fitbit Charge, but with a more elegant appearance and extensive after-market wearability options, swim tracking, with lap counting, and a much longer lasting, replaceable battery.Overall:         ****The Misfit Speedo Shine receives high 4 stars overall, due to the high quality look and feel of the tracker unit and the fact that you can swim in it and track laps. The only things that hold the Misfit Speedo Shine back are the lack of digital display and vibration feedback.

Latest articles

Related articles

Leave a reply

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.