Amazon final week launched a bunch of recent merchandise, together with the Halo View health tracker. A follow-up to the unique Halo Band that arrived in August final yr, this yr’s mannequin brings a number of key enhancements to the lineup. Most notably, it provides a display to Amazon’s health trackers, which the unique mannequin bizarrely lacked. However the Halo View additionally does away with the microphone that the Halo Band used for the “Tone” characteristic. It tracks the wearer’s feelings by the tone of their voice.
This led to speculations that Amazon eliminated the microphone attributable to privateness issues. Whereas that is likely to be true, the corporate isn’t admitting to it. As an alternative, it says not many individuals had been utilizing the opt-in Tone characteristic. So it listened to the shoppers’ suggestions and eliminated the microphone from the Halo View. Furthermore, for many who had been utilizing Tone to maintain observe of their emotional states, the characteristic will nonetheless be accessible within the Halo app. It makes use of the built-in microphone of your telephone.
“Many Halo Band members shared that Tone is considered one of their favourite options, informing how they work together with colleagues within the office, their youngsters, and even their important different,” an Amazon spokesperson told Android Central in an announcement. “That mentioned, we perceive Tone is probably not wanted for everybody. For these prospects who had been on the lookout for a cheaper price level and the place Dwell Mode for Tone within the Halo app is sufficient, Halo View is a superb possibility.”
Regardless of Amazon not admitting that it eliminated the microphone from the Halo View attributable to privateness issues, consultants imagine it performed an element within the choice. There are issues that the Tone characteristic is amassing far more info from the customers with out serving to them a lot. Many customers might be unknowingly gifting away some delicate info to Amazon by way of their Halo Band health tracker, privateness consultants are involved. The corporate has now put all these issues to mattress with the Halo View.
Halo View comes cheaper than its predecessor
Eradicating the microphone has additionally helped Amazon cut back the value of the brand new health tracker. Whereas the Halo Band debuted with a price ticket of $99.99, this yr’s mannequin will price simply $79.99 at launch. That’s regardless of the latter that includes an AMOLED show. This permits customers to entry their well being knowledge proper on their wrist, while not having to take a look at their smartphone. Amazon appears to be getting severe about making wearables.