ActiveLink 2.0

In Get Moving by Tanya4 Comments

ActiveLink 2.0It’s here!  Weight Watchers launched it’s new Activity Monitor on November 2.  I held out until November 4 to buy mine!   😉   ActiveLink 2.0 will still let you know how many activity PointsPlus values you’re earning, but now it can also track your sleep and sync wirelessly with your smart phone app!

I was dying to get the new device.  I had been considering purchasing some other type of wearable device but decided to hold off until the ActiveLink 2.0 came out since I was already using the original.  I’ve had it for a week now, so I wanted to share my thoughts.

First of all, the packaging is super cute!  I love that you can see the actual monitor and the activity wristband through the clear top of the box.  On the side of the box, they also tell you what is included inside the box:

  • ActiveLink activity monitor
  • Activity Wristband
  • Nighttime Wristband
  • Belt/Bra Clip
  • Key Ring/Necklace Clip
  • Colored Rings
  • Micro USB Cable
  • User Manual

When I opened the box, I was excited by the pretty packaging and the inspirational message. I’m a dork like that.  😀   I pulled everything out of the box to get going right away!  Once I started inspecting the contents of the box, I was disappointed in a few things.

First of all, the AL 2.0 has colored rings to “personalize your style,” but you can’t see the colored ring if you are using the activity wristband, nighttime wristband, or the belt/bra clip.  The only time you can see the colored ring is if you are wearing the AL in the plastic necklace clip.  To me, that’s a real bummer.  It’s totally cosmetic and won’t affect me using it or not using it, but I have to admit I was excited about being able to change the color.  Now that I know you’ll never see it, it really doesn’t matter what color ring I put on it.   🙁

Secondly, the “activity wristband” is just ugly.  It’s gray rubber that completely encases the activity monitor.  Admittedly, I didn’t realize it was called an activity wristband until just now.  Perhaps the designers never intended for us to wear this full time as I have been.  Perhaps it was only intended to be used for swimming or activities where the belt/bra clip isn’t feasible.  All I know is that I have see other activity monitors that were much more visually appealing.  I wouldn’t say the others I’ve seen are “stylish” or resembled jewelry, but they certainly look better than the AL wristband.  I found it difficult to get the AL monitor in and out of the wristband at first, but I realized it was only because I was being too gentle.  It was a new toy that I didn’t want to break!   😉    It’s also not super easy to close the activity wristband, but I’m getting better.

Lastly, the “user manual” is VERY basic. It doesn’t tell you anything about how to put the AL in the wristband or the belt clip. It doesn’t tell you how to change the colored rings.  It tells you how to download the software and the app and what the lights mean.  That’s it.  I had questions.  I found the answers easily enough on the ActiveLink help page, but I am already familiar with that page from owning the original device.  I think new users might need more guidance.  I realize this is part of our culture now and that more and more things are online instead of in print.  I just think a few more pages showing how to actually wear the device would be valuable.

Those were just my initial impressions when unpacking the box and setting up my new device.  After having it for a week, there are lots of things that I love too!

The lights on the ActiveLink 2.0 are in two different colors, which is awesome.  I can see at a glance if I’ve reached my baseline or not, just by the color of the lights.  Amber lights mean you haven’t reached your baseline yet and green lights mean you have.  I think that is genius. Each light now represents 10% of your goal (instead of 25% on the original ActiveLink).  This allows you to see how close you are to your goal much easier.

I am also really liking the sleep tracking.  There is a button on your ActiveLink 2.0 that puts the device into sleep mode.  You just press and hold the button until the moon flashes 3 times. This tells you the device is in sleep mode.  To exit sleep mode, press and hold the button again until the moon flashes once.

My favorite feature so far is the free smartphone app.  I have an Android device (Samsung Galaxy S5).  Here are a couple screen shots from my phone to show you what it looks like.  Click the images to view them full size.

You can see right on the dashboard how close you are to your goal.  You can see what time you reached your baseline and your goal.  If you haven’t reached your goal, the app can tell you when it expects you to reach it if you continue at your current activity level.  Pretty cool, huh??  On the dashboard, if you tap on your activity or your sleep info, you are shown more details (by the hour).  I love that all the data syncs wirelessly.  It makes it so easy for me to see where I’m at and how much more I need to do to reach my goals.

The app also alerts you for certain things.  If you are moving around a lot but still in sleep mode, the app will remind you to exit sleep mode.  It also alerts you when you have reached your baseline and your goal.

Here is some technical information for the app:

ANDROID DEVICES
~ App is free on Google Play
~ Must have android 4.3 or higher (Look this up in Settings under “About Phone” or “About Device” & look for “Android Version” to see which OS you have)
~ Must have bluetooth support
google play icon

 

iPHONES
~ App is free on the App Store
~ Must have iOS 7.0 or higher  (Look this up in Settings under “General” then “About” & look for “Version” to see which OS you have)
~ Must have bluetooth support
apple app store icon

 

The price is very reasonable compared to the other fitness devices out there.  The full retail price is $59.95, but you can get it for only $39.95 in NOVEMBER and DECEMBER if you already own the original ActiveLink.  If you are a new member who joins Weight Watchers, you can get the ActiveLink 2.0 for FREE when you sign up for a monthly pass.  This offer is only valid through 12/27/14.  

There is a $5.00 recurring monthly fee with the original ActiveLink and with ActiveLink 2.0.  I assume this goes towards the cost of the tech support, the website, and the app.  I am totally fine paying the monthly fee because I feel the information provided by website and app is very valuable.  I don’t ONLY want to know how many activity points I’ve earned.  I also want to be able to see the data that shows me when I’ve been inactive for long periods of time, when I hit my baseline each day, how my activity has varied throughout the week, etc.  You also have a coach and challenges to get you moving even more.  The $5.00 is worth it.  Don’t let the cost hold you back.  You can give up one latte a month for this. You and your health are worth it!

Many people want to know how to transition from the original ActiveLink to the ActiveLink 2.0.  It was pretty seamless.  I made sure to sync my original ActiveLink one last time to get that data into my account.  Then once I plugged in my ActiveLink 2.0, that became my active device and I was good to go.

I did NOT have to complete a new 7 day assessment.   The assessment is simply designed to see how much you are moving (at the time you complete it), so that you can be challenged to move more.  Your assessment does not affect your Activity Base Line.  I found this on the ActiveLink help page: “Your Activity Base Line is based on your age, gender, weight and height; NOT on your Assessment. (It’s not determined during your Assessment, nor is it influenced in any way by the activity you perform during your Assessment or Challenges.) The Base Line is a fixed level of activity. Specifically, it’s the minimum amount of activity you need for a low-activity lifestyle.”

I have noticed that I am hitting my baseline and my activity goals MUCH sooner using the ActiveLink 2.0 than I did with the original ActiveLink.  I am assuming this is because I started wearing the 2.0 on my wrist, and I used to wear the original device on my bra.  I am going to wear it on my bra this week to try to get a comparison.  I did change my wearing position in my settings, but it still doesn’t seem right in comparison to the data I was used to seeing.  Although I typically don’t eat my Activity Points, I might need to dip into them on occasion if it’s a particularly challenging week.  I just want to make sure I’m really earning the Activity Points I’m counting.

Overall, I am very happy with the ActiveLink 2.0!  I love all the information I can see on my phone in real time.  I love the lights and the sleep mode.  I love that we have more options on how to wear the device.  I’m still not thrilled with the appearance of the wristband, but that is not the most important thing!  I have posted before about why I loved my original ActiveLink, and this device will make it even better!!

I highly recommend this to any WW member who is on the fence.  It will help push you to be more active and help you realize the importance of being active throughout the day (not JUST during a workout).  If you are not a current Weight Watchers member, you can view the ActiveLink 2.0 in the weight watchers online store.

Does anyone else have one yet?  What are your thoughts?  I’d love to hear your feedback!

Comments

  1. I just bought mine yesterday and already love it more than my older active linkv device. I don’t even mind the wristband, I think it looks better than the other ones I’ve seen. The mere fact that it records my activity throughout the day, forced me to be more active on a Saturday then I normally am. I read your post becausebiv wanted a better understanding ofc the sleep mode, and its helped a lot. Thank you!

    1. Author

      I’m so glad it helped you, Kailu!! I am loving mine too. The more I use it, the more I love it. I agree that it forces me to move more than I normally would. Perhaps I was a bit too harsh about the wristband in the beginning. 🙂 I did find that the wristband way overestimated activity points for me. It seemed to be picking up all my little hand movements from typing. I was earning 8-10 APs when I hadn’t done any exercise, so I knew something was up. I switched back to wearing it on my bra, and I’m happy with it.

      I have enjoyed the sleep mode and seeing how much I move during the night. How has the sleep mode helped you? I like having the information but struggle on what to do with it. 😉

  2. I wish there were a way to change the wearing position in the actual app. I started out wearing this big great wristband, but in the afternoon I switched it to my pocket… I have NO way to change it on my phone, so now my activity points won’t be so accurate. Very disappointing.

  3. Author

    That stinks, krikit! I hadn’t thought of that, but I totally see why you would want that. Ugh. Maybe you could send that in as feedback for an updated version of the app. 😀

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