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商业 - 科技

新版Jawbone手环欲打破健康管理怪圈

Ryan Bradley 2013年11月26日

Jawbone推出的腕带式电脑曾经因为大范围的质量问题导致下架,但它现在已经推出了升级产品,希望它能打破个人健康管理的怪圈,真正融入用户的日常生活。

    

    Jawbone推出UP手环已经快一年了。UP是一款腕带式电脑,能够追踪用户的动作,主要是用户走了多少步路、睡了几个小时。事实上,UP手环首次推出已经是在两年前,只不过它在2011年出现了大范围的质量问题,导致Jawbone公司公开道歉,并将该产品下架。

    上周,Jawbone发布了升级版的UP手环以及配套的智能手机应用UP24(意即24小时全天候)。从前,如果用户想要查看自己走了多少步路或者睡了几个小时,需要将手环插入智能手机的耳机插孔。而现在,升级版的UP手环有蓝牙连接,能将数据更新发送到正在手机上运行的应用程序。这个应用还能向用户推送提示信息,督促用户在24小时内多走几步路或者早点儿上床睡觉,以帮助用户实现日常的健康目标。UP系统将该目标默认为每天行走一万步、休息八小时。

    虽然我向来对所谓的健康管理产品持怀疑态度,而且我认为那些会花150美元购买手环改善自身健康的人完全不需要我们的医保体系操心,但是我还是断断续续的用了快一年的UP手环,而且感觉还不错。UP手环不引人注目,而且我基本不会想到它在追踪我的运动,这一点我很喜欢。另外一点让我满意的是,它很少会干扰我,除非我坐得太久(该时间段可以自行调节,我设定的是一小时),那么它会发出震动提醒;另外,每天早上,它会震动叫醒我起床。其它的通知和更新也都不引人注目,我已经关闭了几乎所有的推送通知。而且一般情况下,我基本每天都会登录一下该应用。有时候不登录,那也没什么大不了。

    我绝对算不上模范用户,但这也没关系。UP手环能让我大致掌握了两项非常重要的数据:步行里程和睡眠情况。作为一个纽约人,每天完成1万步的目标轻而易举。我每天通勤要走大约6千步,中午或者下班后,再步行20分钟去吃饭。如此算来,1万步基本就够了。不过我的睡眠则一塌糊涂。说真的,在佩戴UP手环之前,我根本不知道自己的睡眠质量有多糟糕。

    像我这样情况的人很多。绝大部分人都不知道自己的睡眠时间到底有多长(确切点说,是有多短)。哈佛医学院睡眠医疗中心(the Division of Sleep Medicine at Harvard Medical School)执行董事拉塞尔•桑娜说:“大部分人对睡眠知之甚少。我们如今的社会是24小时全天无休,说到基本的健康知识,大部分人对睡眠健康根本一无所知,因为他们的医生就对此毫无了解。”

    如今人们的睡眠情况同以前大不一样。我们如今有各种药物帮助人们保持清醒(而且这样的药物越来越多);而且,如今的文化是,只休息三四个小时就去上班的人被视为英雄。而实际上,这种人应该被看成喝醉了酒之后去上班。桑娜说:“如果人不眠不休工作18到24小时,认知能力与血液中酒精含量为10%的时候相当。从法律角度而言,血液中酒精含量达到8%就意味着醉酒。”他补充道,睡眠至关重要,影响到我们总体的健康状况。从这个意义上来说,UP手环等设备的重要性不言而喻,因为“它们使睡眠成为我们刚刚开始探讨的整体健康问题的一部分。”

    It's been almost a year to the day since Jawbone released the UP, a wristband computer that tracks motion -- the number of steps you take and the hours you sleep, mostly. Actually, it's been two years since the UP was first introduced, but in 2011 many of the bands failed, and the company apologized and pulled the product.

    Last week, Jawbone released an update to both the band and its smartphone application which it's calling UP24 -- as in, 24 hours a day. Before, if you wanted to see how much you were walking or sleeping, you had to plug the wristband into the headphone jack on your smartphone. The band now has bluetooth, so it can send updates to the application running on your phone. And the app can send you push notifications that might prod you throughout those 24 hours to walk a little more or get to bed a little earlier, so you reach your daily health goals, which on the UP system default to walking 10,000 steps and sleeping for eight hours every day.

    Despite my general skepticism toward products that make a game out of healthy living, and my sense that the people who purchase, and whose health is improved by, a $150 wristband are theleast of our health care system's worries, I've been using the UP off and on for a year now, and I like it. I like how unobtrusive it is, and how little I think about the fact that this thing on my wrist is tracking my movement. I like the few interruptions it causes in my day: vibrating angrily if I've been sitting for too long (an hour, in my case, but that's adjustable) and vibrating me awake in the mornings. The additional notifications, with the update, are unobtrusive too -- I've turned off pretty much all the push notifications and during my normal weekly routine I check in with the app maybe once a day. Maybe not. It's no big deal.

    I'm a pretty bad user, but that's fine. The UP gives me a very rough sense of two rather important data points: walking and sleeping. As a New Yorker, hitting the 10,000-steps-a-day goal is fairly easy. My commute accounts for roughly 6,000 of those steps. Add in a 20 minute walk to lunch or after work, and I'm basically there. My sleep, on the other hand, is a mess. I honestly had no idea just how bad it was until I began wearing the UP.

    I'm far from alone. Most people have no idea how much (or more accurately: how little) sleep they get. Russell Sanna, the executive director of the Division of Sleep Medicine at Harvard Medical School told me that there is just "a huge amount of illiteracy around sleep. We're a 24 hour society now, and since your doctor didn't learn about sleep health, you didn't either, when you were learning about basic health."

    We don't sleep like we used to, we have more drugs to keep us awake than ever before (and still more coming), and culturally, working after just three or four hours of rest is viewed as heroic, when really it should be viewed more like showing up to work drunk. "When you're sleep-deprived, within 18 to 24 hours, your cognitive performance is equivalent to 0.1 alcohol in your blood -- 0.08 is legally drunk," says Sanna. Sleep, he adds, is a "gateway issue" -- it affects so much of our overall health that devices like the UP are incredibly important because "they make sleep part of a conversation we're only just starting to have."

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