Smartwatches are starting to diversify. Each manufacturer is trying to carve out their niche in the market, and the Zing Smartwatch aims to provide a fashionable, modern, and fun approach to the wearable market.
Let’s get Social
The Zing is an activity tracker designed for the social generation. Whilst not providing as much information as a dedicated fitness tracker such as a Fitbit, it provides the ability to play games and send simple graphical images to a group of fellow Zing users.
There are no physical buttons on the Zing, so control of the device is performed through motion control.
Raising your wrist up displays the time, from there a flick of the wrist changes modes and functions. Through the wrist (and an occasional blowing) action it’s possible to access the option to send a message to your friends, play simple games like rock, paper, scissors, and even control your music and trigger your phone’s camera remotely.
It takes practice to activate and control the Zing, and for the first few days it caused a lot of frustration and bad language. The situation was improved when I tightened the strap as much as I can comfortably stand. I also learnt that the frustration was getting in the way of using the device well, as the Zing responds much better to smooth motion rather than jerky actions, which are normally ignored.
Telling the Time
Although it may look like a traditional watch face, the zings matrix screen is actually a minute and hour register? What’s the difference I hear you ask.
Look at the image below.
On a traditional watch, this time would be read as 5.55 but on the Zing you read the hours first then the minutes so the time is 6 hours 55 minutes, it certainly takes some getting used to.
Out of interest, I asked my Twitter followers what time they thought the watch said in the image above: they all got it wrong.
At its heart, the Zing is an activity tracker. The associated iPhone and Android apps present your activity in an attractive virtual dial – there are no numbers or metrics to tell you exact calorific values or step counts, and interfaces to other health apps are absent so it may not meet the need of the serious fitness fans. It does however, give you a very quick (and beautiful) visual represent of how active you have been.
A Practical Comparison
The following table shows the comparison of features between the Zing and my trusty Fitbit Flex that has served me over the past few years.
If you are looking for a serious fitness tracker that is easy to use, then the Fitbit Flex might be the right option. But if you are looking for something a little more fun, then the Zing might be the option for you.
A few teething issues but it does get a little better
I’ve had a few frustrations with the Zing – for me what makes the Fitbit great is its simplicity, it just works. The Zing is a different proposition. You need to remember hand movements to navigate through colour identified menus, but it is different to everything else I have seen on the market and choice is always of value.
The messaging function means that it’s aimed at groups rather than individuals, so this adds an extra level of fun which can lead to extra motivation for those looking to become more active. I can see a scenario where a group of friends trying to work together to improve fitness will really benefit from the Zing.
I also suspect I’m no longer the target age demographic for this device #sadface