Long awaited Jawbone UP3 starts shipping April 20, but with lower water resistance

The Jawbone UP3, a fitness tracker its maker says is so comfortable you’ll want to keep it on day and night, will start shipping on April 20 to customers who’ve pre-ordered. All of these orders should go out by mid-May, the company said Thursday, while new orders submitted from now onwards will ship once the initial pre-orders have been taken care of.

The company’s fitness-oriented, sensor-laden wearable was announced back in November, and was supposed to start shipping by the end of the year, but a problem with the device’s resistance to water scuppered the plan. In a blog post Thursday, Travis Bogard, the company’s vice president of product management and strategy, apologized for the delay before setting out in detail why the timetable for launch hadn’t quite gone to plan.

Apology

“When we announced UP3 late last year we were confident we would start mass production of the device and begin shipping within a few weeks of the announcement,” Bogard explained in the post. “However, as we began to scale our manufacturing process it became clear that, while most units passed our high quality bar, a proportion did not. Specifically, we were not achieving the level of water resistance we had passed in the design and initial production stages.”

He added that the original plan had been for an advanced multi-sensor product that “defied industry standards” with water resistance of up to 10 meters. However, following extensive testing, Bogard said the company has been “unable to guarantee 10 meters of water resistance for all UP3 units,” adding that the UP3’s water resistance capabilities are now “comparable to, and in line with, most other multi-sensor trackers.”

Splashes, showers OK

In other words, it can cope comfortably with water splashes and even showers, but you can forget diving into a swimming pool with it. For those who ordered the device on the basis that it would be suitable for full submersion, Bogard said there would be no issue if they wanted a refund.

Using its own sensor platform, Jawbone was able to design the UP3 as its smallest and lightest tracker to date. Despite its size, the device offers a decent seven days of battery life, and can track not only your heart rate but also respiration rate and skin conductance. Leave it on overnight and each morning it’ll also present you with a bunch of sleep stats.

Jawbone’s $180 gadget comes with a one-size-fits-all clasp-equipped band, which includes the touch-sensitive central unit. Collected data is sent to Jawbone’s Smart Coach software, which helps you to work out different ways to improve your health.

Product Review

Fitbit’s trimmed-down Versa Lite still has all the smartwatch features you need

Fitbit trimmed some of the features it bundles in its popular Versa smartwatch to keep the price low on it newest smartwatch, the Versa Lite. Does this strategy work? Read our review to find out.
Mobile

Whether by the pool or the sea, make a splash with the best waterproof phones

Whether you're looking for a phone you can use in the bath, or you just want that extra peace of mind, waterproof phones are here and they're amazing. Check out our selection of the best ones you can buy.
Deals

Stay fit and save cash with our top 10 affordable Fitbit alternatives

As much as we love Fitbits, they're rather expensive. If all you want is a simple activity tracker, however, then check out these great cheap Fitbit alternatives. With offerings from brands like Garmin, you don't need to pay full price.
Wearables

These are the best smartwatches for everything from fashion to fitness

Tempted to buy a smartwatch? If so, then the growing number of great models available means you've got plenty to choose from. But which one should you pick? Here is our list of the best smartwatches.
Android

Mobile World Congress 2019

There's no bigger show for mobile tech geeks than Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain: where flagship phones are born and intriguing new wearables shine. And this year, where foldable phones and 5G are dominating the news. For 2019…
Deals

It’s no Apple Watch, but the Vtech Kidizoom is a cheap smartwatch for kids

Looking for a cheap, no-nonsense smartwatch for kids? The Vtech Kidizoom DX2 smartwatch lets your child take photos, videos, play games, and track steps. With a $15 discount, it's very affordable.
Product Review

Casio’s Pro Trek WSD-F30 outdoors smartwatch fits city lifestyles, too

It’s equipped with all the outdoor tools and sensors you want, but the Casio Pro Trek WSD-F30 is as much a lifestyle smartwatch as it is trekking companion.
Wearables

Microsoft Band: Users of the defunct fitness tracker offered a refund

Three years after it stopped making the device, Microsoft has announced it is finally ending support for its Band fitness tracker. The good news is that current users, if there are any still out there, can obtain a partial refund.
Wearables

Fitbit drops the price, splashes on the color for spring 2019 lineup

Fitbit's spring 2019 lineup includes a new Versa Lite Edition, an affordable everyday smartwatch, as well as the stylish and sleek Inspire and Inspire HR fitness trackers. There's also the Ace 2, a swimproof tracker for kids ages 6 and up.
Wearables

Time to get to the gym: The fitness-loving Galaxy Watch Active is now available

Looking for a new fitness buddy? Samsung just launched the Galaxy Watch Active and the Galaxy Fit, two new wearables with a raft of fitness-focused features that'll keep you moving and get you down to the gym.
Home Theater

IPX what? The electronics water- and dust-resistance rating explained

Increasingly, consumer electronics companies are using an IPX code to demonstrate that their products are water and dust resistant. But what does this IPX code mean? We break it all down and walk you through it.
Wearables

Fitbit Versa Lite versus Fitbit Versa: How are they different?

Fitbit took the best of its popular Versa smartwatch and removed some elements to create the new Versa Lite, an even more affordable entry-level smartwatch. How does the Versa Lite differ from the original Versa? Read on to find out.
Wearables

You will never need to charge a smartwatch again, if new EU project succeeds

A new EU research project has launched into finding a new way of powering wearable devices, with the intention of using an energy harvesting system to ensure we never have to charge one up ever again.
Wearables

Garmin Marq series offers stylish performance for those willing to pay for it

Garmin had been around for 30-years and is celebrating its anniversary with a big announcement: The Marq, a new series of premium adventure smartwatches designed for consumers who want stylish performance and are willing to pay for it.