t is not a smart watch because it does not tell the time but it can be perfectly mistaken for one. Halo is a new activity bracelet created by Amazon that comes packed with sensors and with which the company takes its first step into the world of wearable electronics and health.
From the outset it has the same capabilities as many activity bracelets that are already on the market. Once set, an app on the phone can show the number of steps you have taken or the quality of your sleep. The bracelet can also measure body temperature and heart rate and works for a full week between charges.
But this bracelet, which Amazon will initially sell only in the US at a price of $ 99 (some features will require an additional subscription service of $ 4 a month), also has more advanced features.
Inside, for example there are two microphones. Its function is to listen to the tone of voice of the person who is wearing it to detect if they are angry, happy or insecure, for example. In the phone app it will be possible to check the different moods throughout the day using this function.
Amazon claims that voice clips used for analysis are not recorded and, perhaps more significantly, Halo does not have support for the company’s virtual assistant, Alexa. Neither support for third-party apps.
Another trick that Halo will be able to do – this more advanced one – depends on the app on the phone. Using the camera of her device the user will be able to capture a 3D model of her own body. With this model, the app will calculate the percentage of body fat.
In order to make the model, the user has to wear tight sports clothes and take four photos (front, back and sides) of his body. The app does it automatically using the front camera of the device if the phone is left resting on a surface.
This system, which uses machine learning techniques, is twice as accurate as the body fat calculations that a digital weight can perform at home, says the company, and the app will allow you to save a historical file of these 3D models to check how the body evolves through an exercise regimen or diet.
As with voice, these models are only stored on the phone. The user can decide whether to upload them, encrypted, to a remote Amazon server. The app recommends making these models every 2 weeks and is only available for people over 18 years old.
In addition to these two functions, the application has a section dedicated to medical studies or challenges to which it is possible to subscribe on a voluntary basis. Among the experiments, for example, the user can check the effect of caffeine ingested in the middle of the afternoon on her quality of sleep that night or how different exercises affect the reduction of her body fat or the practice of yoga to her mood.