Jawbone UP4

jawbone-up4-on-woden-tableDo you care for knowing how much you move every day, how well you sleep at night, quickly pay for your water without the need of carrying your wallet on your runs, and much more? Then this is just the right gadget for you, UP4 from Jawbone scores well for accuracy, comfort for day and night, compatibility with other smart devices or health apps. And the best thing about Jawbone’s UP4 is that it looks and feels great on the wrist, like one great piece of jewelry and not another tracking device. This smartband comes with lots of great features, uncommon  to traditional smartbands.

The Jawbone’s premium UP4 smartband is built with breakthrough sensor technology and implements sophisticated predictive algorithms, enabling: hearth health monitoring – automatically tracking resting and passive heart rate, activity tracking – steps made and calories burned, analysis of sleep and diet, smart alarms, food logging and smart coaching. The smartband is equipped with: Bluetooth® 4.0 BLE, Tri-axis accelerometer, NFC, three single color LEDs and bio-impedance analysis for heart rate, respiration and Galvanic Skin Response (GSR).

What is our own rating for Jawbone UP4?

How does it stack up against similar products?

Jawbone UP4 is available in silver and black and is made of medical-grade hypoallergenic TPU rubber with a casing of anodized aluminum with less than 0.5% nickel, encasing the sensor hub, and a TiN coated stainless steel clasp. The device respects EN1811 standard for nickel release. The band comes in a single size and fits most wrist sizes in a range of 140mm and 190mm. The UP4’s charger has a proprietary magnetic mechanism for attaching the smartband and plug into the USB port, though it might have been a better idea to just stick to the traditional micro USB, as many other similar devices on the market do.

A disastrous clasp, though, made it into the list of disadvantages of UP4, it would have been better for the smartband to have been designed with more thought on this. After getting through the everyday hassle of hooking and unhooking it for a lot of times you risk loosing your UP4. Jawbone came with the complementary UP Activity Clip, an accessory meant to provide additional security for your UP4 smartband. The clip will lock the clasp, will ensure the smartband stays in place and it doesn’t fall off. If you don’t have it yet, you could, by just signing into your account and claim the free UP Activity Clip.

The lack of a color display, for Jawbone’s UP4, boosts up the battery life to about 7 days on a single charge.

Jawbone UP4 is rated as splash-proof so rain or wearing the smartband in the shower can’t harm it, making the Jawbone UP4 wearable 24/7, but do remember not to submerge the device in liquids, neither wear it when swimming or surfing, in hot tubs or baths, saunas or steam rooms. This might be very much of an inconvenience in case you you prefer activities that lead to a permanent hassle of taking off and putting on the smartband.

What you probably have not expected from an activity tracking wristband is to be able to pay for a taxi or buy a coffee with only a tap of your wrist. You can link your UP4 to an eligible American Express® Card and manage payments from the payment section of the UP® App. Look for contactless symbol on payment terminals in stores, on your Jawbone UP4 the payment chip is hinted by a raised contactless symbol near the clasp. In case your smartband gets stolen you must disconnect it from the payment section of the UP® App, to protect yourself against identity theft and credit card fraud.

When it comes to sleep tracking all smartbands compete for advanced sensors, the better tracking algorithms and greatest comfort. The Jawbone’s UP4 flagship smartband is capable of automatically going into sleep tracking mode and track on its own:

  • light sleep – when the body is preparing for sleep, your heart rate slows down and the body temperature slightly drops. The light sleep phase is estimated at about 50% of overall sleep.
  • deep sleep – when your body is recharging the batteries, builds bone and muscle tissue, straighten the immune system, it is healthy to get about 20% of deep sleep from overall sleep.
  • REM sleep – rapid eye movement, it’s the sleep phase “of your dreams”, when your brain gets active again. It is assumed to have a key role in storing memories. An REM sleep 25% of overall sleep is considered healthy. According to NIH getting enough REM sleep is very important for mental health.

How does it work?

UP4 from Jawbone can tell how long it took you to fall asleep, the kind of sleep you had and provide you access to the hours breakdown of your sleep phases. This kind of data will let you understand and improve your sleep quality and quantity. The improvements are a feature of the Smart Coach, the app will make suggestions on maximizing and improving the quality of your nights and days. You can set the smart alarm on your smartband to gently vibrate in a wake up time window at the most ideal moment of your sleeping cycle, these ensures you to wake up feeling refreshed.

You can set idle alerts as customized reminders to make sure you are moving throughout the day, perfect if your job implies sitting on a chair for long periods. Whenever your wristband detects it is time to get moving it will vibrate reminding you of it.

With the help of UP App you can team up with your friends and family for sharing progress and insights, encourage or even challenge each other. The smartband will store up to 16 days of sleeping and moving data, that you can delete at any time with the UP App, after getting the data synchronized.

The UP® App is compatible with Android and IOS and is available for free download from the App Store and Google Play.

The UP® companion App learns you and your health habits, thanks to the built in advanced sensors and algorithms, helps you keep up with your own goals, giving you feedback and motivating messages, bringing you so many steps closer to a healthier life. The UP App can easily log the duration, effort made and estimation of calories burned for various activity types, even non-step-based. Over time, the system will even learn to differentiate between different activity types logging them automatically.

Recap the features’ list of Jawbone UP4:

  • Activity and calories burn tracking
  • Automatic sleep tracking, wake, REM, light, and deep sleep
  • Technology: NFC, Bluetooth® 4.0 BLE, Tri-axis accelerometer, and Bio-impedance analysis for: Heart rate, Respiration, Galvanic Skin Response (GSR)
  • Built-in sophisticated predictive algorithms
  • Monitoring resting and passive heart rate
  • Self learning
  • Smart coach
  • Smart alarm and idle alerts
  • Splash-proof
  • UP® companion App
  • Pay via American Express® with smartband
  • Up to 7 days on a single charge
  • Streaks, milestones and personalized goals
  • Duel, challenge and team up with friends & family
  • One size fit, ranging 140mm-190mm
  • Medical-grade hypoallergenic TPU rubber and Anodized aluminum with less than 0.5% nickel
  • Android and IOS compatibility
  • 24/7 wearable
  • Weight: 29g
  • LED Indicator
  • Food Logging

Final Thoughts

The Jawbone’s UP3 is not outdated either, one of the features Jawbone is so proud of, for its devices, is providing continuous updates, this has brought functionality of older UP smartbands in line newer expectations, like the updates for automatic sleep detection and tracking. Assuming the compromise you can get really nice deals and very good prices for Jawbone UP3.