The bathroom’s bringer of bad news gets a little bit smarter
Nothing derails a weight loss regime faster than the moment you step on a set of bathroom scales to find that either your weight hasn’t changed, or worse, that you may have added a few pounds. Bathroom scales have fallen out of favour with consumers and fitness professionals alike. Their basic design makes it almost impossible for them to communicate anything other than bad news; as fluctuations, long term progress and weight-to-muscle ratio are all disregarded.
Nevertheless, with more and more people looking to lose weight the market for scales continues to expand. The current trend for connective technology has opened the door for much needed innovation within this product category for smart scales, which can provide a more accurate and intelligent means to gauge both weight management and the associated health factors. We take a look at some of the latest generation of smart scales currently on the market:
Withings Wireless Scale
The Withings Wireless Scale begins by calibrating itself automatically, then when you step on it, it ensures that your weight is evenly distributed to provide a highly accurate measurement of both weight and body mass index (BMI). The smart scales connect to a local Wi-Fi network and also connect to mobile devices via Bluetooth. Each new reading is automatically added to a personal weight chart in an app which is available to view on desktop, smart phone or tablet. Using the accompanying app, users can set personal custom goals to reach personal weight objectives. It also recognises you by your weight, allowing for automatic user recognition and assistance in goal setting. The scale is also compatible with the Lost It! app and users can choose to share their progress via social media.
The Fitbit Aria body scale taps into your home wireless network to upload your information to a private account automatically, each time you step on. Aria records weight, BMI, and % body fat over time on Fitbit.com and the accompanying iPhone app enables users to see weight trends, monitor progress and to log diets and work-outs. The smart scales also allow for multiple user accounts. Badges are earned for reaching weight loss goals, for an extra reward, which users can choose to share along with other stats via social media. Aria can also be used in conjunction with other Fitbit fitness monitors such as the Fitbit Ultra.
The first striking feature of the TargetScale is it’s visual appeal. The display of flashing LED lights is reminiscant of a 1980s disco toy, making a real statement in the bathroom. However its technology is very much current generation. TargetScale automatically identifies users, and measures a number of statistics through BIA (bioelectrical impedance analysis) including bone mass, body fat, body water, muscle mass and your Body Mass Index. The smart scale then visualizes the distance to personal target weight, using a series of light rings. The closer the light ring is to the center, the closer you are to your target weight. It connects to iOS (Apple) mobile devices via Bluetooth and supports up to 4 users with an additional 8 individual users possible when using a mobile device. Then, using an accompanying app, users can see single results, check statistics and graphs to see long term trends.