With the changes, Amazon is competing more directly with Fitbit and other popular health bands, which commonly offer displays with basic health metrics. Data available on the Halo View screen will include step count, heart rate, blood oxygen levels, sleep score, and live workout tracking.
I decided to link to the website after the announcement (last year though – as most of my write-ups are scheduled much before). Amazon’s been making steady progress in this space (first through Haven, which was wound up) and now through the wearables market. It doesn’t do anything different from the existing products in the market, but to what end? They are geared towards the “wellness” market, and very few companies have the breadth or latitude to own the space completely.
Amazon is betting on the “voice enabled market” – they have invested considerable resources in enabling “smart homes” – a problem which never needed any solution.
Halo does something more:
The Halo membership also continues to include the option for users to scan their bodies to assess body fat percentage over time, which was the other feature that drew scrutiny in reviews of the device. This was the other feature that drew scrutiny in reviews of the device.
Image analysis must be done somewhere – it is impossible on the device locally. They promise to delete the images immediately, but then it’s their word enshrined in the privacy policies that can be changed anytime. Meanwhile, users will pay to get more ingress of technology companies in their lives.