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Moov Now is a $100 fitness wearable that does what Apple Watch and Fitbit cannot

Jon Phillips | July 20, 2015
With Apple Watch squeezing the high end of the fitness tracking market, and the just-IPOed Fitbit looking more powerful than ever, you'd think now would be a bad time to launch the Moov Now. Another activity-tracking wearable? Doesn't the world have enough already--especially at that commodity-level $100 price point?

The differences between Moov and Moov Now

The original Moov launched last year, and the company's CEO, Meng Li, likes to brag it's the highest rated fitness tracker on Amazon. (I checked. It rates at 4.5 stars, a score shared by a few other trackers.) Overall, the Moov Now isn't a dramatic departure from the original, but battery life has been improved from 24 hours to up to six months thanks to the move to a standard CR2032 watch battery. That's a huge pain point relief. 

There's also a new processor that's twice as fast, and will deliver better Bluetooth performance. But the most forward-facing difference is a new physical design. The updated band is lighter and slimmer, and has holes for "breathability." In total, Meng Li says, the Moov Now is just more comfortable to wear during workouts--and when you go to bed. Thus the addition of sleep tracking in the latest model.

The little Moov Now pod that sits inside the band comes in Blue, Red, White and Black, offering some degree of personalization. I tried on a few models, and they strapped on reasonably easily. But if you're wearing anything approaching a traditional-looking wristwatch, the blatant sportiness of the Moov Now just doesn't accessorize nicely.

As for the Moov software platform, it now integrates all of its exercise programs in a single app. Currently there are 10 programs with 200 variations and fitness levels, and Moov says more are coming.

And all this matters why?

The fitness wearables market is full of many more losers than winners. Gadgets like Apple Watch and Fitbit enjoys tons of public mindshare, and do just enough to satisfy wearable-curious dabblers who are satisfied with simple data sets. This spells bad news for simple, cheapo fitness trackers--of which there are way too many to name. But it feels like you can buy fitness trackers out of gumball machines. That's how cheap and chintzy they're getting.

The Moov Now is freakishly cheap too--but it does a lot. And it does so without going down the problematic rabbit hole of heart-rate tracking, and at a price point anyone can explore. I hate to use this word, but ouch: The Moov Now has the potential to be borderline... disruptive. We'll see how it performs in its official review this fall.

 

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