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Omron Activity Tracker is more than just a pedometer

Sarah Jacobsson Purewal | May 2, 2013
This device tracks workouts, distance (including pace), and calories burned

Web services/mobile apps:

This activity tracker is technically a "smart" device--which means that you can connect it to Omron's fitness tracking website to track your data over a longer period of time. Although the HJA-312 only displays up to seven days' worth of data, it actually stores 14 days' worth in its memory bank. This means that when you connect it to the Internet, your last 14 days' worth of activity will be recorded.

Here's the catch, though: The HJA-312 can only connect to the Internet via a special NFC Communications Tray that's sold separately. That's right. Unless you purchase the NFC tray (which costs about $20), you can't connect to the Internet at all, or take advantage of any of Omron's fitness website features such as long-term tracking and weight loss goals. What's even stranger is that the tray seems to be specifically designed for the HJA-312, yet it's still a separate purchase.

The fact that the HJA-312 doesn't come with a way to connect to the Internet is a pretty big deal--after all, Internet connectivity and long-term tracking ability is what really separates today's smart activity trackers from regular old pedometers. With no way to connect to the web service (aside from the NFC tray), the HJA-312 lags some behind competing products.

The bottom line:

It's too bad that the HJA-312 doesn't come with a way to connect to the Internet--except through a $20 separate purchase--because otherwise, I really like this activity tracker. It's got features that other smart pedometers don't have, such as a backlight and a way to time workouts, and it's very accurate when it comes to counting steps. It also tracks calories burned during rest (I assume, using your weight and height as a guideline), so it's a pretty neat little data tracker. Now if only we could get that data on the Internet, it'd be even better.

 

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