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Technology is great as long as it doesn’t interfere with the human stuff. Everyday a new product or service is launched that aims to make our lives easier or better in some way. Some of these ideas work well, some are okay and some die hard.

Two months ago I started wearing black bracelet on my wrist that claimed to help me ‘live better’ by measuring my sleep patterns and counting the number of steps I took each day and then showing me in an infographic-style display on my smart phone what my body was up to.

So did it live up to it’s claims or is it now collecting dust?

Surprisingly it’s still on my wrist. I wear it everyday. And the most surprising thing is that it had a real impact on my life. There is something about seeing that you only slept 5hrs 32mins when you wake up that makes you feel really guilty, like you’re being an asshole to your body. They say that the average person should walk 10,000 steps per day. I had no fucken idea what 10,000 steps was pre-UP. Turns out it’s not that easy to hit that target, but it ain’t that hard either if you change your habits.

On my first day with the UP I took 5,776 steps. So the next day I decided to ditch the car (now saving a lot on petrol) and start walking to the train etc. I also set my alarm for 6:25am to try running (something I hadn’t done since high-school). I’ve kept this up and now I’ve normally cranked out about 7,000 steps before 7:30am and the rest just happen walking to and from public transport. My goal has actually increased to 12,000 steps per day now.

I feel a lot better which is the whole point of this kind of thing. Also lost a few kg’s too.

This is how my June looked.

Average sleep per night: 7hr 14min
Average steps per day: 9,987.3

3 Small Cons

No Watch – Jawbone suggest you wear your UP on your non-dominant wrist. For me that’s my left and also where I used to wear my watch. My mate also picked one up and he too ended up sacrificing his watch for the UP.

The Cap – Last weekend I lost the tiny cap that sits on the end. It’s more of an aesthetic thing, but not ideal. If you live in the U.S.A, Jawbone will ship you a replacement one for free. If not, you have to buy a pack of replacement caps for $10.

Remembering to Switch Modes – There have been a couple of nights (normally when I’m exhausted), when I’ve forgotten to press the button to change from awake mode to sleep. It’s not a big deal, you can manually add your sleep in the next day just a pain.

Overall I dig the Up. I’m keeping it. I’m fitter and I sleep better because of it. Just wish it also told the time.

You can buy an UP for $130 – $150 here.

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