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Misfit's Shine 2 gives inactivity alerts and acts as an alarm clock

Misfit's Shine 2 gives inactivity alerts and acts as an alarm clock


More baby steps for step trackers

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Misfit Wearables, maker of the lightweight, jewelry-like Shine activity tracker and the less expensive Flash tracker, has just announced its next-gen wrist-wearable, the Shine 2.

Some of the Shine's updates are cosmetic in nature: The round, aluminum disc, which slips into a rubber band that goes around the wrist, now comes in carbon black and rose gold. It's also thinner. And the circle of tiny LEDs that light up along the face of the Shine for notification purposes, now light up in different colors, showing different patterns for different types of notifications.

But it has some new internals that impact the Shine experience to make it a little bit more than a lightweight step-counter and sleep-tracker. It now has a vibration motor, for notifications, and a magnetometer in addition to a standard tri-axis accelerometer. This means that the Shine can now vibrate to let you know when you've been sitting too long, something that more and more activity trackers do, and can double as a wrist-alarm to nudge you awake in the morning. The magnetometer will offer great accuracy in tracking wearers' movements, Misfit says.

As far as activity trackers go, 'no charging needed' is still one of Misfit's best features

It now has Bluetooth 4.0 for faster data syncing with Misfit's compatible mobile app, Misfit Link, where all of the data lives. And Misfit says wearers can tap the Shine to command other functions, too, like taking a selfie or playing music from the smartphone.

Misfit doesn't really have the brand recognition, at least in the U.S., that wearable-makers like Fitbit or even Jawbone claim. But it's known for being one of the more stylish wearables that happens to be waterproof enough for swim-tracking and, oh yeah, doesn't require charging, lasting up to six months on a single coin battery. (John Sculley, a former CEO of Apple, is also one of the cofounders of Misfit, alongside Sridhar Iyengar and CEO Sonny Vu.)

It offers a wide variety of trackers, ranging from the more expensive Shine, to the $50 Sport Neckless, to the $30 Flash, to even an $80 Speedo Shine geared towards swimmers.

The new Shine 2 hits retail stores on November 1 and costs $100. Like previous versions, the new hardware works with iOS and Android devices.