Nike FuelBand SE review: more social features, much longer battery life
The FuelBand SE doesn't offer any earth-shattering changes from its predecessor, but its design, longer battery life and enhanced social features ensure it continues to be a solid choice among fitness trackers.
- Decent battery life
- Sleek design
- Connects to your Facebook friends list
- Still no Android app
- Not geared toward fitness buffs
- Pointless sleep monitoring feature
Nike's new FuelBand is now out, and following a few weeks of running in parks, walking around exhibition halls and the occasional all-out exercise session, well, I'm pretty tired. Fortunately, I only needed to charge Nike's new wearable once in my first eight days of use. Indeed, that's the main benefit to Nike's Second Edition (SE) FuelBand: thanks to an energy-efficient Bluetooth Low Energy (LE) radio, it promises much-improved battery life over its predecessor. When it comes to the physical hardware, however, its appearance has barely changed since 2012, save for three new color options (and a highfalutin' Rose Gold one). Its fitness-tracking capabilities haven't changed either, although Nike has promised improvements in accuracy and a better ability to sense when you're attempting to game the FuelBand.
Beneath the matte black surface, however, there's been more progress: Nike+, the FuelBand's companion app, is friendlier than ever, with the ability to group your buddies into separate categories. There are also new hourly reminders to stay active throughout the day and a Sessions feature to monitor activity in a set timeframe. More than ever, though, Nike's finding itself in a crowded wearables market. Though it was one of the early victors, has it done enough to maintain its lead? Grab your water bottle and we'll walk you through it.