WATCH: The Withings Activité is the Moto 360 of fitness wearables

Callum Tennent
June 24, 2014

We’re pretty big fans of fitness wearables here at What Mobile. They can get something of a bad rep, but when done right they can be excellent improvements to your daily routine. If anything, they’re the first genuine, new technological innovation since the smartphone. The only way is up, is what we’re saying.

Of course the one factor which immediately puts off even the most fashion-unconscious of potential consumers is the looks. Even the most aesthetically pleasing of fitness bands looks like a fitness band. Nobody is ever going to mistake your Jawbone UP24 for a Patek Phillippe Calibre 89.

That could be about to change, though (the bit about fitness bands looking like fitness bands, that is – the Patek Phillippe thing might still be a bit of a reach). The Withings Activité is far and away the sleekest, subtlest, most attractive fitness tracker we’ve ever seen. And that might have something to do with the fact that it looks like a rather nice watch.

Withings - Activite face

Yep, instead of the usual rubberised plastic, the Activité is made of chrome, leather, and scratch-proof sapphire glass. It has a round, analogue watch face. It looks fantastic. Hell, some of the top fitness bands out there can’t tell you the time at all, never mind with a sexy Swiss-made analogue movement.

It’s more than just a watch, though. The Activité is a fitness tracker, no matter what its looks may tell you. It syncs with your connected device via bluetooth, just like any other band would (iOS only for the time being). It’s got all the traditional features of a fitness wearable, including a pedometer, an accelerometer, calorie tracking, run tracking, and swim tracking. Yep, despite its leather band and sophisticated looks, it’s waterproof up to five metres. It has sleep tracking capabilities too, including a smart alarm which can gently vibrate to wake you when you are in your lightest phase of sleep (a feature we’ve loved on both the Jawbone UP24 and the Fitbit Flex).

Withings - black face

Withings was also determined to not only create a watch which doesn’t  look like a fitness wearable, but one that doesn’t  function like one either. That’s why instead of having to charge it every few days, you can instead get an entire year of life out of the Activité with a single button watch battery.

The only giveaway to the Activité’s true nature is the small dial in the lower right-hand side of the face. Rather than displaying seconds, the day of the month, or any of the other conventional features found on an analogue watch, it instead shows you your progress towards your daily activity goal. As you go about your day it tracks your progression on a scale of one to 100 by moving the hand around the dial.

Withings - Activite range

What’s more, it only costs $390. It’s advertised on the Withings store website, but doesn’t seem to be available to purchase yet – it can’t be far off though. Hopefully an EU pricing and release will follow soon.

For now, take a look at the promotional launch video at the top of the page and see what you think.

About the Author

Callum Tennent

International playboy/tech journalist.

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