Fitness tracker, smartwatch, and more.
After its expansion into high-end gaming notebooks in 2011 and gaming tablets last year, Razer is once again proving that it's more than just a purveyor of mice and keyboards. This year at CES, the company entered an entirely new and unexpected category with the Nabu — a smartband designed to act as not just a companion to your mobile device, but a wearable sensor that tracks the way you live, sleep, and interact with others.
Smartbands are by no means a novel concept, but Razer believes the Nabu can set itself apart with its open software platform and unique featureset. The Nabu pairs with any iOS or Android-enabled device over Bluetooth 4.0 and, like devices like the Pebble, can share and display relevant notifications on your wrist. But rather than flashing your data for all to see, the device uses one outward-facing OLED display to indicate when you have received a text, email, or call with vibration and a illuminated icon. Another display on the back of your wrist shows more detailed information, like caller ID or a text. Taking privacy protection a step further, the Nabu will use its built-in accelerometer to detect when you've tilted your wrist to activate the display. With a shake of your wrist, calls can also be rejected.
Using GPS data from your phone and other inertial sensors, like an altimeter, the Nabu is also a capable fitness and lifestyle companion. It can detect steps walked, distance traveled, stairs climbed, and even your sleeping habits. At launch, the device will be offered with a dedicated mobile companion app that measures exercise and health data. Using NFC, the Nabu can also detect other Nabu owners, affording for future feature expansions, like wireless contact information sharing with a literal handshake.
As for battery life, the Nabu can last for up to 7 days between charges and can be recharged with an included charging cable — making it competitive with the Pebble, but heads and tails better than the Galaxy Gear's abysmal 2-day lifespan.
To drum up software support, Razer plans to release the Nabu's open SDK and offer developers the device at a discounted price of $49. Pricing for consumers has not been disclosed, but Razer says that it will be in a comparable range.
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