JayBird Reign

CES 2014 has been overflowing with new fitness technology launches, with new devices announced by major players like Garmin and Polar, but one company you may not have heard of before is JayBird. But even if you haven’t heard of JayBird, you will when its new activity tracker launches later this year.

The JayBird Reign is a wrist-based activity tracker that looks great but also comes stuffed full of features and is backed up by an impressive companion app. The device itself is flexible, tactile and comfortable to wear. It comes in an array of colours and is one of the best looking fitness trackers I’ve seen – and I’ve seen a lot of them lately.

While the lack of a built-in display is disappointing, the promised level of tracking isn’t. JayBird claims that the Reign is smarter than other fitness trackers on the market, and that it can accurately and automatically differentiate between running, walking, swimming and even cycling. That kind of functionality instantly got me interested, and with swimming in the mix the Reign will be a device that budding triathletes will be taking a close look at.

Obviously the Reign will do the basics – count your steps, estimate calories and measure distance – but like the Garmin Vivofit, it will also learn from your activity and let you know when you should get training, and more importantly when you shouldn’t. JayBird calls this feature your Go Zone.

JayBird told me that the Reign should be available in the US this summer, with a price of around $200. I was told that it should be rolling out to Europe soon after the US launch, but there was no indication of UK pricing.