Amazon, one of the last tech giants to bring out health and fitness products for consumers, has finally stepped into the ring.
The company just announced its foray into health and fitness tracking with Halo, a service that combines hardware in the familiar form of a wrist-worn tracker with powerful AI software programs and an app dashboard. Instead of focusing on tracking individual activities with instant feedback on the wrist, the Fitbit trackers, or even the Apple Watch, the service aims to be more explicit in helping users monitor their overall health by analyzing data to determine longer-term patterns detect. For this reason, Amazon sells Halo not just as a standalone device, but as a service: most of the performance is in the software.
If there was any comparison for Amazon Halo and everything else out there, it would be the whoop strap. The screen-free high-performance wearable loved by serious athletes switched to a subscription model in 201
The Halo Band
The actual hardware behind Amazon Halo isn’t impressive at first glance. The band seems small and like the Whoop doesn’t have a screen. In a preview for the press before the launch, the spokesmen for Amazon emphasized that the lack of a screen was a deliberate design decision in order to limit the distraction for the wearer. There are sensors, however – an accelerometer, a temperature sensor, and a heart rate monitor, as well as two microphones. The band is designed to be worn around the clock, so it is waterproof. The company estimates the battery life is one week.
To launch, there are three fabric strap options for subscribers to the service, with a number of silicone sports straps sold separately.
Halo users go beyond simply counting steps with the service. Amazon is promoting a smart activity tracking feature that goes beyond simply counting an ancient move toward any destination. Instead, Halos software uses the reward recipients’ activities differently depending on their duration and intensity, and even subtracts points for sitting time (outside of sleep). . There is also sleep tracking with a score to measure the quality of your rest.
The most intriguing feature, however, might be a body fat measurement tool that Amazon claims is “as accurate as the methods a doctor would use,” and it with a DXA scan (sometimes called a DEXA scan) too to compare. This type of procedure is expensive and requires special equipment. However, Amazon claims that you only need a few photos for measurement.
This is getting technical, but the company relies on its AI expertise, particularly its machine learning and computer vision technologies, to calculate the estimates. Amazon wouldn’t reveal exactly how it made sure the feature was as accurate as DXA. That remains to be seen. The company also claims that users can control privacy settings for any images used in the process, and all photos are automatically deleted from the cloud after processing.
Finally, a “tone” opt-in uses microphone recording language to analyze the wearer’s voice. Even small bits of conversation can be analyzed using machine learning software to give the wearer a better idea of the effects of their communication with others and to provide feedback on mood and emotional wellbeing. Again, Amazon claims that all recordings on the user’s phones are processed, deleted after processing, and never uploaded to the cloud.
Along with these features, users can try Labs, a kind of wellness initiative from Halo experts and partner brands like the American Heart Association, Harvard Health Publishing, and the Mayo Clinic. The integration allows Halo users to share data with Weight Watchers, John Hancock, and Cerner.
Halo launches today for $ 65, including a six-month membership in the service. After this period, the service will cost $ 4 per month. After the early access time, the band and six months of service cost $ 99.
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