Misfit Wearables has rolled out a few products this year but never quite hit the nail on the spot. While the Flash re-defined the benchmark of an affordable fitness tracker and the Flash Link brought remote control capabilities for multiple smart devices, there was never a true successor to the original Shine. Two months back, Misfit released the Speedo Shine that looked and functioned the same as the original Shine, albeit with better algorithm for lap pool tracking. Novel but not groundbreaking. 2 weeks ago Misfit Wearables finally unveiled the Shine 2. Is it a worthy successor to the Misfit Shine that started off as an Indiegogo fairy tale? Read on.
- Tracks steps, distance, calories, sleep and activity sessions
- Slim and lightweight
- Accessory like
- Calls and messages alerts
- Alarms and “Misfit Move” alert through vibration
- Battery lasts up to 6 months
- Water proof to 5 ATM
- Capacitive touch sensor
- Link app compatible
- Vibration too mild
- Functions still limited compared to current wave of activity trackers
- Premium price
LOOK AND FEEL
The Shine 2 is undoubtedly the thinnest fitness tracker from Misfit Wearables but it won’t fit into the standard Shine accessories like the Bloom necklace due to the slightly larger diameter. There are 12 LEDs on the face of the Shine that serves to tell time and progress.
There are a few upgrades the Shine 2 has over the original Shine. The array of LEDs flashes in white, red, orange, blue and green depending on the function activated.
Also there’s vibration motor that functions as an idle alarm to buzz the user to get up after prolonged sitting. The vibration can also be set to go off as a wake up alarm.
There are no options for smart alarms which have become popular of late; the type that supposedly goes off during the lightest cycle of sleep.
There’s a new action clip that is supposed to help keep the Shine 2 in the wristband during vigorous activities. The same clip is also found in the Speedo Shine set. The magnetic clasp has also been replaced with a plastic clasp. There used to be a “Misfit tool” which was used to pry open the original Shine tracker when it’s time to replace the battery. Now that’s reduced to a twist and open which is pretty convenient.
Accessories are limited at the moment though press pictures seem to suggest the availability of wrist bands and necklaces.
The new capacitive touch allows the Misfit Shine 2 to be lightly tapped either twice of thrice to show time and progress plus any other functions that is activated by the Misfit Link app. Compared to the original Shine, controls were much easier to activate.
FUNCTIONS AND DATA PRESENTATION
The most prominent improvement the Shine 2 has over the Shine is call and message alerts in the form of vibrations and LED flashes. Kudos to Misfit Wearables for squeezing 6 months of battery life and a vibration motor into the slim profile of the Misfit Shine 2.
Calls and text messages will cause the Misfit Shine 2 to light up in green and vibrate. This function can be enabled or disabled under settings. Currently it is not possible to choose the colour of the LEDs to correspond to smart notifications.
Personally I thought the vibration was too mild and if I wore the Misfit Shine 2 loosely on my wrist without paying much attention, there’s a high chance it could go unnoticed. Unfortunately the vibration strength level is not customisable.
Alarms and “Misfit Move” alert
The second improvement is the enabling of vibrations as alarms and idle alert; aptly named “Misfit Move.” You can set what time to wake up to or the duration which you would like Shine 2 to buzz and remind you to move after prolonged sitting.
Remote with Misfit Link app
Compatibility with the Link app allows the Misfit Shine 2 to be used as a remote control to play music, take selfies, activate IFFTs or other smart home devices such as Misfit’s very own Bolt light bulbs. Unfortunately you can only choose 1 of the functions due to the limited variation of taps; double tap to tell time and progress, triple tap to activate Link function.
I had mine tagged to take pictures on the camera.
Activity tracking is Shine 2’s bread and butter. The device logs your daily activity level in the form of step count and estimates distance and calories from it.
The Shine 2 is also able to detect sessions of physical activities and log it in app where you can manually edit and name those activities. Presently there are 9 activities which a user can tag each activity session to with the default set to “walking.”
I didn’t see any of the Speedo Shine lap tracking features in the Shine 2 so it might be a case of proprietary knowledge of Speedo’s.
Sleep tracking is automatic and you can also choose to track your sleep with the Misfit Beddit sleep monitoring system.
Misfit’s mobile app presentation hasn’t changed much in the last year so if you’re a user of their ecosystem of products, you’ll feel right at home. For those of you migrating from other fitness products such as Fitbit or Jawbone, it takes getting used to. The app does its job but I wouldn’t rank it high in terms of aesthetics and follow up analysis.
The mobile app provides a global feed of people around the world who are currently using a Misfit Wearables tracker. So you’ll be able to see other people’s achievements and even add them as a friend provided they accept you of course.
If you have no intentions of adding any friends, Misfit has also provided a phantom buddy, the benchmark of the average user based on your gender from the Misfit ecosystem. Just try your best to beat this guy.
This uses the camera of the mobile device to take a picture of the food item consumed. It does not allow the user to name nor edit the logged food item though.
Sleep tracking is automatic though it can also be manually activated in app. Users can also log their weight over time as well.
This Misfit Shine 2 lasts up to 6 months on a single coin cell battery and is waterproof to 5ATM.
There’s 3rd party app compatibility and the list does expand over time. For example, you can have your sleep data logged to Evernote where you’ll see your weekly reports and add remarks within Evernote on why you’re up at 2 am on a particular day.
There’s also a web dashboard online but since everything can be done in app, I found very little reasons to access this function. But it’s there if you need it.
The Shine 2 also tells time. While this has been a trademark of Misfit Wearables’ trackers right from the start, I always found this function to be more a bonus than a game changer; whipping out the mobile device to check time just seems faster.
IN A NUTSHELL
Misfit Wearables has succeeded in producing a worthy successor to the original Shine. The improvements are minor but crucial, and the aesthetics is icing on the cake.
I highly doubt Misfit could have added more functions without changing the appearance of the Shine series of trackers; the addition of a screen or heart rate optical sensors would have marred the appearance of the trademark Shine look. It remains to be seen what new grounds Misfit Wearables will break in their quest for the Shine 3.
At $99, there are a multitude of trackers out on the market that outperforms the Shine 2 in terms of functions though those look strictly fitness-tracker-like. The closest competitor in terms of appearance is the revamped Jawbone Up2 tracker.
If you’re a firm believer that trackers should look as good as they track, then the Shine 2 is an excellent device to consider. The Misfit Shine 2 is currently available in Carbon Black and Rose Gold at the RRP of $99.
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Check out other Misfit Wearables reviews from GadFit