Fitbug: Providing Technology-Driven Wellness at a Low Cost
Fitbug is one of the many brands that have come up to capitalize on the rapidly growing digital wellness industry. Our Smartphones have become mobile health and fitness coaches, able to analyze our activities and guide us to a healthier lifestyle. Beyond Smartphones, wearables have exploded with unexpected force, creating a completely new personal hardware market focused on health and fitness.
If the present is any indication, digital wellness will continue to grow, with numerous new hardware and software solutions invading the market. For Fitbug, the race to become a dominant digital wellness brand started more than a decade ago.
Fitbug launched in London back in 2005. Their main aim was to help people become happier and healthier through technology. Today, they have produced a number of wellness products and have offices in London, Los Angeles and Chicago.
While the company is not as well-known as Garmin, Fitbit or even Apple, they have a dedicated client following of people who are looking for an easy, convenient and low cost path to wellness. Below, we look at their three main products; Kiqplan, Orb and Wow.
Fitbug price when reviewed: $30.90
1. Fitbug Kiqplan – An App-Enabled Personal Fitness Coach
All of us have goals. Some want to lose weight, others want a flatter belly and others desire a healthier dietary lifestyle. The hardest part is not setting those goals but achieving them.
You need to stay motivated, work hard and be smart to get to the finish line. Alone, the path is tough but with someone to help, you are more assured about achieving your objectives.
Kiqplan is a fitness app that acts as your coach to help you along the way. Unlike a real coach, it is there with you all the time to provide constant help and feedback. Whatever fitness goal you have in mind, Kiqplan will help you get there.
Choosing your plan
There are different training plans to choose from; Slim & Trim for women who want to lose weight and get fit, Beer Belly Blaster for men who want a healthier and fitter body, Fit & Healthy for both genders, Your First 5K for the running enthusiasts and 10K Run Ready for the runner who wants a longer challenge. Other plans are the Bikini Hot to get you bikini-ready in no time and a toning plan for guys who want the perfect beach body.
Each plan runs for a period of 12 weeks. This is enough time to start out slow, work on your progress and achieve your objective. All this time, Kiqplan will monitor your progress (through a connected fitness wearable), recommend steps to take and guide you through the rough patches. Essentially, your own personal coach in your hand.
Getting healthy is not just about running or working out at the gym, though these are extremely important too. It is also about what you eat. Kiqplan helps you manage your dietary habits through a personalized food log. You can track what you eat, see your calorie details, get advice on what to eat and continually improve your dietary lifestyle.
With a variety of healthy and tasty recipes available on the app, you will have no more excuses for eating unhealthy, calorie-loaded food.
Progress is about taking one step at a time. Kiqplan reinforces this by introducing daily targets in your progress toward your goal. You can set the activity or calorie target you want to achieve for the day and see how well you are doing through the day.
Other features include workout videos, challenges, training schedule and motivational content.
You can install the app on your Android or iPhone device. For Android, only devices with Android 4.4 and later are compatible. For iPhones, iOS 7 and higher is a requirement for the app to function. In addition to Smartphones, this app can be used with a wide range of activity trackers including Fibug’s own Orb, Jawbone trackers, Misfit fitness trackers, Withings and various Fitbit wearables.
Click this link to see the complete list of compatible devices and operating systems.
A Personal Virtual Coach
Kiqplan is the personal fitness coach you need if you are serious about turning your life around and achieving your dream. Through challenges, motivation and meaningful feedback, Kiqplan will help you achieve what you might never have on your own.
2. Fitbug Orb – Affordable Fitness Tracker
If you are on the search for a good and cheap fitness tracker, then you have found it. Orb is a small minimalist-style activity and sleep tracker that fits easily onto your wrist. Using accurate fitness and sleep data gathered throughout the day, Orb helps you understand your current lifestyle and change it for the better.
Combined with Kiqplan, Orb becomes a really powerful lifestyle management tool. You get to improve your fitness, your diet and your sleep; the three most important aspects to a healthy wholesome life. Here is a more detailed look at Fitbug Orb.
The Orb is quite small but quite thick. The design is good enough for the track or gym but it may not pair up as well with your office suit. You can get the tracker in various colors including blue, pink, white or black depending on your style preferences.
At first sight, the device’s smooth glossy surface resembles a screen. But there is no screen and the only interface is a small oval light coupled with a single button. If you were already used to a tracker that has a screen display, no matter how tiny, this is going to be a bit of a disappointment.
One good thing about the device’s design is how well it fastens to your wrist. The wristbands have been designed in such a way that the tracker never falls off, no matter what activity you are engaged in.
You can wear the tracker on your wrist like a watch, on your belt using a belt clip or wear it discreetly on your underwear using a magnetic clip. Other than that, there really isn’t much else to the design.
24/7 activity tracker
Once worn, the device will track thenumber of steps taken, distance walked and duration. For the first few days, Orb will monitor your activity levels before recommending goals. After a week of monitoring for instance, it recommends a goal of 10,000 steps a day. It breaks this number down further to provide you with daily goals to achieve. From your daily step counts, the tracker will calculate how many calories you are burning every day.
Orbs activity tracking feature is not the most accurate among fitness tracking devices. It has a tendency to over-award step count, which can be quite misleading.
Orb tracks how well and how long you slept; in other words, the quality and quantity of your snoozes. Unlike most wearables, Orb will not automatically detect when you fall asleep. You must alert it by pressing the lonely button thrice in quick succession. Sleep mode is denoted by five flashes of the oval light.
Sleep mode is disengaged by pressing the button in the morning or taking 50 steps after you wake up, after which the sleep mode will disengage automatically.
Fitbug Orb can be paired with iOS (iPhone 4S and higher) and Android (4.4 and higher) devices when you need to upload data wirelessly. Make sure that you have the Fitbug app installed on your Smartphone before pairing. Also check that your Smartphone is equipped with Bluetooth 4.0 for seamless wireless pairing.
A Low Cost 3-Star Fitness Tracker
Fitbug Orb is a fitness tracker with many flaws and limitations. We can only give it a 3-star rating. The best thing about it is the cost. For $50 (or less depending on where you buy it), you get a decent activity and sleep tracker to help improve your lifestyle.
3. Fitbug WoW Smart Scale
For most people, their weight is an important indicator of how fit and healthy they are. This is why most health programs have weight management and monitoring as a crucial aspect. We have already seen the personal coach by Fitbug (Kiqplan) and the wearable fitness tracker (Orb). With WoW, Fitbug introduces a product that focuses specifically on body weight.
WoW is a smart Bluetooth-connected weight scale designed to make weight monitoring easy and convenient. Calibrated in both kilograms and pounds, WoW is easy to use, features an intuitive interface and is compatible with a range of devices.
WoW does what all other scales do; take weight. As mentioned before, you can read your recording in either Kgs or lbs. But the scale goes beyond taking weight; it sends your weight measurements to your Fitbug account. You can then access these records over the web or in your Fitbug app.
If you have a Kiqplan app, the scale can also send your weight recordings there where they become an important part of tracking your progress toward achieving your set goal.
If you just want a scale that will tell you your weight without the need to connect to a gazillion devices, WoW can do that too. Your weight will be shown on the bright LCD screen.
The surface of the scale is made from glass. For people on the heavier side of the scale, you might feel a bit reserved about stepping on a glass surface. But WoW uses tempered glass meaning that it can take plenty of pressure without cracking. Specifically, it is designed to hold up to 250kg, so do not be afraid to step up.
WoW is meant to be placed in the bathroom, where you can easily take your weight when you wake up or at any other time. To withstand the watery conditions of the bathroom, the scale is designed to be splash proof. While you should not under any circumstances drown it in a tub of water, it will not get damaged by the accidental splash of water from the tub. To be safe, place it safely away from the bathtub or faucets.
The WoW smart scale is compatible with a range of devices including iOS devices (iPhone 4S and later, iPad 3 and iPod Touch), Android Smartphones and fitness trackers (through Kiqplan). The scale connects to other devices using low energy Bluetooth, which helps prolong the battery life.
A Low Cost Smart Scale
The WoW smart scale costs around $50, quite a fair price for a smart scale with its capabilities. If you are looking for something basic to track your weight and connect to your devices and fitness trackers, we highly recommend this one.
A Focus on Individual and Corporate Wellness
In the past decade, Fitbug has made numerous efforts to be a leader in technology-driven wellness. Their products, especially Kiqplan, are designed for use by individuals as well as corporate users. Together, their products form four important pillars of a healthy and happy lifestyle; good sleep, regular activity, nutrition and coaching.
Looking at the three products we have reviewed, it is obvious that Kiqplan is their most successful venture. Its ability to understand the individual and provide customized guidance and coaching makes it a powerful tool in achieving fitness goals.
Even more convenient is its ability to connect to most devices and major fitness trackers. It’s 12-week programs consisting of challenges, motivations and helpful content are extremely helpful in creating meaningful individual progress toward set goals.
Orb was a great idea, though not perfectly executed. It brought with it the powerful ability to track activity and sleep, all in one small device. It is even more amazing when you consider that it was launched in 2013 when wearables were still taking their baby steps.
Today, there are numerous wearables and fitness trackers that do much more than Orb and at the same low cost. For people aiming to conduct serious fitness and sleep monitoring, we recommend other better alternatives such as Fitbit, Jawbone, Misfit and Garmin.
As for the WoW scale, it has everything you would expect in a smart scale. It does not have any wow (no pun intended) factor but it will tell your weight with accuracy and ease. If you are looking for a cheap smart scale, try Fitbug’s WoW.
The world of wearables is evolving rapidly. With Kiqplan, Fitbug has created a platform that is bound to last for years and remain a strong brand in the wellness technology industry.
Do you think Fitbug stands a chance in the rapidly changing world of fitness Wearables? Leave your comments below.
See recommended fitness trackers on Amazon
Fitbit Charge 2
Garmin Vivosmart HR+
Misfit Shine 2
Xiaomi Mi Band 2