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CES 2015: Withings faces up to wearables

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Withings has earned early kudos at the CES expo in Las Vegas with analog smartwatches that double as activity trackers and fashion items.

Withings has revealed the new face of activity tracking with Activité Pop Рan analog watch with a sophisticated activity and sleep tracker inside. It launched the watch at the CES Unveiled event on the eve of the International CES expo in Las Vegas yesterday.

Following on the heels of the Withings Activit√© watch, Activit√© Pop says it “is innovating the space of wearable health trackers by making the convergence of fashion and mobile technology accessible to everyone”.

Activit√© Pop joins its predecessor in a new category of motion trackers where sophisticated sensors as well as connectivity technology are seamlessly integrated into what it calls “a timeless fashion accessory”.

The Activit√© Pop analog watch features a lightweight design that extends across the PVD-coated watchcase and the smooth silicone strap. In order to match and express a range of personal styles, the watch comes in three “Pop chic” colours (Azure, Shark Grey, Sand) and a set of playful wristbands.

“We’ve paired Activit√©’s elegant Parisian design with fun-to-wear materials and pop colors in order to create a very personal device that people would want to wear and never take off,” said C√©dric Hutchings, CEO of Withings. “It is time wearables step up to what they claim to be!” he added.

Activité Pop features two hand dials, one showing the time and a sub dial showing percentage progress of specific activity goals. The objective (e.g.: 10 000 steps) is set within the application and, throughout the day, users know where they stand at a glimpse. When the goal is achieved, the watch vibrates, much as, for example, the Samsung S4 and S5 do with the Walkmate app. The watch also automatically recognises and tracks swimming and running. Worn at night, it monitors sleep quality and wakes the user up with a gentle vibration.

As with all Withings devices, Activit√© Pop syncs automatically with the free Withings Health Mate application, named one of Apple’s Best Apps of 2014. Health Mate acts as a coach to help users achieve personal goals and includes an interactive leader board, personal “data insights,” smart reminders and achievement badges. It is integrated with 100+ partners whose services add up to a full wellness experience (GPS running, food logging, etc). At first, Activit√© Pop will only be available for iOS users, with an Android compatible version to follow.

Activit√© Pop’s hands move automatically when it crosses time zones or the clock changes. There is no need to recharge it as a single standard watch battery powers it and lasts up to 8 months. Finally, it is water resistant up to 30 meters.

“The activity tracker category has a huge problem with abandonment, and so consumers don’t really get to see the benefit of long-term data and the impact it can have on their health,” said Hutchings. “Activit√© Pop’s fashion-forward styling, price point, and ease of use combine for the most accessible activity tracker that we’ve ever seen.

Availability

Withings is demonstrating Activité Pop at CES until January 9. Best Buy will be the exclusive USA launch partner for Activité Pop, which is now available for immediate purchase at bestbuy.com in very limited quantities for $149.95..

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