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Misfit Shine 2 review

Riyad Emeran
15 May 2016
Misfit Shine 2
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
80
inc VAT (as of 13th of May)

Misfit Shine 2 is waterproof, has a keen fashion sense and a six-month battery life

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Specifications

Pedometer: Yes, Heart-rate monitor: No, Display: No, Battery life: 6 months

The original Misifit Shine fitness tracker was a game changer, but not because it brought new features or functionality to the table - in fact the Shine was a pretty basic device compared to many of its peers. What made the Shine so special was how good it looked, and how that look could be customised to suit your own personal taste.

The Misfit Shine was the first fitness tracker that was designed to fit in with your lifestyle no matter what you might be doing, from heading out for a run to attending a black tie, gala dinner.

That focus on style and good looks made the Shine an option for consumers who may have considered fitness trackers to be too ugly to wear every day. And anyone who did buy the Shine based purely on its looks would have been pleasantly surprised to find a pretty decent fitness tracker inside that little disc.

The Misfit Shine 2 raises the bar, but not stratospherically so. It builds on the solid foundations laid by the original and adds a few nice features. But just like with the original Shine the Shine 2 isn’t really about features, it’s about style.

Design

Although stylish design was clearly of paramount concern to Misfit, form does, to some extent at least, follow function. The shape of the Shine 2 is dictated by the CR2032 battery that powers it, but at only 8mm thick, the Shine 2 isn’t actually much bulkier than that battery.

The Shine 2 is also light as a feather, weighing only 8.5g with the battery installed! Of course that’s just the device itself without the wrist strap or clip, but its slim shape and ultra-lightweight mean that you could easily slip it into the coin pocket of a pair of jeans and never even notice it’s there.

Misfit Shine 2 on trousers

The casing is constructed from anodised aluminium, which means it’ll stand up to pretty much any abuse you throw at it. The aluminium case also gives the Shine 2 a pleasingly tactile feel – smooth, yet solid. You can also choose between an understated black finish or a slightly more noticeable rose gold.

You get both a wristband and a clip in the box, giving you multiple options for wearing the Shine 2. Both options are matte black, though, and do little to complement the device itself, especially the rose gold version.

The original Shine has a dizzying array of accessories available, from leather bands to steel pendants - there are even bejewelled options from Baublebar and Swarovski. Misfit has similar plans for the Shine 2, so you can expect a range of stylish accessories to complement this latest Misfit device in the near future.

While most fitness tracker manufacturers focus on the feature set of their devices, Misfit has instead created a device that users will want to wear all the time, no matter what they’re doing or where they’re going.

Misfit Shine 2 seperated

One area that could have done with a design update, though, is the way the Shine 2 is secured in its wristband or clip. Having used the original Shine and the budget-focused Misfit Flash, I’ve always found them worryingly insecure when worn. In fact I lost my Flash while out on a run, finding an empty clip upon my return home.

Unfortunately, it seems that the Shine 2 is just as prone to disappearing acts as its older siblings. In the two weeks I’ve been using the Shine 2, it has popped out of the wristband and clip over half-a-dozen times. Luckily I’ve always noticed and recovered it, but sooner or later I know my luck will run out.

It’s time to Shine…

One of the best things about the Shine 2 is that you don’t need to remember to charge the battery. Another smart move from Misfit is the decision to power all its devices using standard coin cells, in this case the ubiquitous CR2032, rather than rechargeable batteries.

The battery in the Shine 2 will last for around six months, ensuring that the device is always attached to you, tracking your activity and sleep, 24-hours a day. I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve left my fitness tracker at home because it was charging up overnight – that’s simply not a problem with a Misfit device.

The Shine 2 tracks the steps you take and estimates the distance you’ve travelled and the calories burned based on that data. It will also track your sleep, logging deep and light sleep, and when you wake during the night.

There’s no altimeter functionality built into the Shine 2, so it won’t count the flights of stairs you climb each day. This is a shame, since trackers that log the stairs you climb do encourage you to forgo lifts and escalators, thus adding to your daily activity.

In its favour, the Shine 2 does automatically detect activity when you embark on any form of exercise. Start running and it’ll figure out that you’re pounding the pavement and log your run accordingly. The Shine 2 will also log your swims – it’s waterproof to 50m, so you really can wear it anywhere, anytime.

The Misfit app also gives you an indication of what activity you’d need to do in order to hit your daily goal – 45m walk, 15m run, 20m swim, etc. This is great if you’re getting close to the end of the day and want to push on over the finish line.

Talking of the finish line, Misfit doesn’t employ the standard step count daily goal that most other fitness trackers use. Instead you’ve got a points total to hit, with the standard total being 1,000 points. Of course you still rack up those points by taking steps, but it’s good to be different.

The real advantage to using Misfit points instead of a basic step total is that the Misfit points take into account the intensity of your activity. So while most fitness trackers will just count steps whether you’re strolling or running, Misfit will reward you with more points if your activity is more intensive.

Another plus point for the Shine 2 is its accuracy – the distance estimates provided by the Shine 2 are uncannily accurate. Obviously, a pedometer-based tracker will never be as accurate as a device with GPS built-in, but Misfit’s sensors and algorithms certainly do a very good job of judging how far you’re walking or running.

The Shine 2 has 12 LEDs running around it, each one represents a 12th of your daily goal – tapping the Shine 2 will result in some or all of those LEDs illuminating, depending on how close you are to your daily goal. Those LEDs will also show you the time, roughly speaking at least, with a solid light representing the hour and a blinking one the minutes.

Misfit has fitted vibration alerts into that super-slim casing as well. You can set the Shine 2 to buzz when you’ve been inactive for too long – you’d be surprised how long you sit static for over an hour during the day. You can also set silent alarms so when you wake up early, your partner doesn’t have to.

The Shine 2 will also buzz when your phone is ringing, or when you receive a text message. With no screen, you obviously can’t see who’s calling you, or what the message says but it's a really handy extra if you tend to keep your phone in your bag and often miss calls because of it. Continues on Page 2 ...

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