Nike has sent out invitations to a “NikeFuel Forum” in New York Oct 15, and rumors are rife that the sports gear giant will be announcing a refresh of its fitness-tracking wristband FuelBand then. This news comes hot on the heels of allegations that competitor Fitbit is developing a new model of its popular device Flex.
Released last year, the $149 FuelBand is more expensive than other more established health-monitoring bands like the $99 Flex and $129 Jawbone Up. The device keeps wearers active by encouraging them to achieve a daily NikeFuel goal, and rewards them with NikeFuel points. While the FuelBand was an effective fitness tracker, it trails competitors which offer more features such as meal-logging and sleep-tracking. The new model is purported to be more durable and offer longer battery life, according to 9to5mac, but will otherwise be similar to its predecessor.
The FuelBand has not been updated since its January release last year, apart from adding color options. It is possible the Oct 15 event is not related to the FuelBand, but we can’t imagine what else fitness giant could be announcing. With smartwatches like the Pebble, Galaxy Gear and Sony’s smartwatch all bringing pedometer and health-tracking functions and phone-compatible functions together, Nike will need to step up its game to hang on to its piece of the wristwear market.