Friday, 24 April 2015

Misfit Flash Review

Ah, the Misfit Flash. An ingenious little fitness tracker that is supposed to make you fit, healthy, and lose weight. Lies, lies, lies. Okay, not exactly lies….but I’m not too happy the Misfit Flash. Let’s get into the review, shall we?

I got the Misfit Flash back in January as an early birthday gift. It was also on sale so it only cost $30 instead of the usual $50. I have now been using it for about three months, maybe three and a half. I don’t feel like figuring out the exact amount of time. The Misfit Flash does do essentially what it claims to, but it also has some serious issues that need to be improved.

The Design
The design is pretty good for the price. The material the band is made out of is soft and flexible. I suppose it’s a type of rubber. It’s adjustable to fit tiny childlike wrists, and huge giantlike wrists. It comes in an array of colours. The band is also discreet and about the size of a watch. So it can be worn under clothing and will blend into most outfits. There is also a clasp that you can use if you don’t want to where the band. Or you can attach the clasp to a keychain. In fact, I use the clasp with mine all the time. Or at least I did. Until it broke. Now it’s a duct tape monstrosity because I don’t like to wear the band (nothing wrong with the band, just my personal preference). Why don’t I just get a new clasp? Why, what a fabulous idea! Except they don’t make them. Misfit’s website does not sell anything for the Flash, other than the Flash itself. They sell replacement clasps for the Shine, but the Shine fits differently than the Flash and ergo are not compatible. The clasp is also great for if you have a formal event and want to hide the Flash. Oh, wait, that’s right. In case you’re wondering how I broke the clasp, I dropped it inside (hard flooring) and it fell maybe four feet, and just snapped. The actual Flash was fine. I tried to crazy glue the clasp but that was a fiasco in itself. The band has not broken for me but I do not really wear it. I have heard online though that many people have had problems with the band breaking. I believe you can find replacement Misfit Flash bands, but not on their website, on eBay. Why does Misfit make a product that is breakable with no replacements? I wish I knew.

The App
The app is how you see how many step you have taken, as the Flash itself does not have an actual face. There are lights that indicate your progress on the Misfit Flash, but it does not tell you how many step you have actually taken. It also will tell you the time, but only within five minutes of the actual time. The app is pretty, and that’s not exactly a compliment. First off, they don’t even have an app for the iPad. They have one for the iPhone and iPod, but not the iPad. So you have to use the iPhone version of the app. Which isn’t that big a deal, just something I thought I’d mention. Second, Misfit recently updated there app so it is now different than it was before, and there’s nothing wrong with that, except they didn’t make it better they made it prettier. Before it was plain, it was simple, but it worked. Sometimes. Sometimes it had issues synching with MyFitnessPal and would add extra calories, and once it just didn’t add the steps I had done for the day. They just disappeared. But most of the time it told me my net calories and synced properly with MyFitnessPal. Now it never syncs with MyFitnessPal. Now the calories always show up zero and I cannot even find where the net calories are supposed to be if it did sync properly. It’s not a huge deal because I can just look at the number of steps in one app and the number of calories in the other, but it would be nice if the Misfit app actual did what it claimed to do. But I guess that’s asking too much. It can also be synced with other various apps but I have not used those so I do not know how well they work. But who knows, you may have better luck with it than I do.

You can also track your sleep with the Flash and see your data in the app. Which seems like a great feature. Note the word seems. The Flash will tell you when you are in a deep sleep and when you are in a light sleep, but that’s about it. It doesn’t tell you what to do about it if your sleep is not restful. I suppose if you’re trying different things you could see if they were working, but other than that it doesn’t give you much. It also is not the best at knowing if you’re asleep. At first I thought it was great because it seemed to be tracking accurately, but then it would start saying I was asleep when in reality I was watching TV on the couch. I know I wasn’t moving that much, but if it’s going to tell me I’m asleep when I’m not, then it’s not really that useful. Also, just a warning, if you use the clasp while wearing pyjamas it tends to pop off pretty easily. But I did learn that the Flash was indeed water proof that way. I dropped in the toilet (clean toilet) that way, then when washing it off managed to drop it down the sink. It got stuck. At seven in the morning. Before school. Suffice it to say not a great way to start the day, but the Flash is waterproof!

Motivation
I suppose the Misfit Flash is slightly motivating to work out. They do have a social aspect on their app now, so I assume you can compete with your friends, but I haven’t really used that aspect of it, and have no desire to. As far as solo motivation goes, the Flash uses a points system instead of just steps. You choose a goal you want to reach in points for each day. The more dots that light up on the Flash, or the more the circle is filled in on the app, the closer you are to your goal. 600 points is about 6000 steps, maybe a little more. This is fine, but I don’t really see the need for points. I’d rather just set a steps goal. You can see your steps on the app, but the focus is on completing the points for that day. It will also send you encouraging messages when you meet a goal or an achievement. But other than that, you’re pretty much on your own. So if you like setting goals and the idea of points seems appealing, great! If not, I don’t know how motivating the Flash will be for you. Some people will be motivated just by having the Flash, knowing that there is this tiny little device that will track their every movement and their self-worth will inevitably become tied to it, and if they don’t meet their goal they will fall to the ground in agony cursing the world for the horror that it is. But you could do the same with, you know, a $3 pedometer from eBay. Just a thought.

Also, the Flash uses a watch battery that claims to last around six months. Just so you know.

Well that is my Misfit Flash review. Can you guess what I think of it? Do you think I’m wrong? If you do, feel free to rant about how much you love the Flash in the comments. Good day!





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