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Are They or Aren't They? Motorola Mum on MotoAct

November 04, 2011


Now that others are coming out with health and fitness gadgets that you wear on your wrist, Motorola (News - Alert) is taking its own first tiny step into the water.

According to a story by Kevin Krause,  the company has been sending a survey out to selected consumers to see if they would buy a new (“presumably Android (News - Alert)-based,” says Krause) product.

It’s not a smart phone or a tablet, Krause writes, but a small device you would wear on your wrist to track personal fitness information while listening to music, if you choose. Krause notes in his story that what may be named MotoActive is most like Sony Ericsson’s (News - Alert) LiveView or the iPod Nano, but Motorola’s potential product “would act as a standalone mash-up of the two concepts with wireless syncing between your PC and Android devices and a ‘smart music player.”

Taylor Wimberly writes at that Ericsson’s LiveView Bluetooth accessory links up with users’ Android 2.x device “and provides a mini stream of data to your wrist (or wherever you clip it) so you no longer have to pull your phone out of your pocket to check Tweets and Facebook (News - Alert) updates.”

Apple’s iPod nano seems an even better match for the potential new Motorola product, with its fitness tracking and music abilities.

Motorola had a protoptype for MotoActive. Chris Burns at writes about the company’s earlier wristband device, called the Tracy XL (named after Dick Tracy, of course!), that never quite got off the ground.

Burns adds that the new MotoActive has “a tiny display touch screen, several physical input buttons around the edge, a single Android back button, and a cool red and black wristwatch band with which you’ll be sporting the new device in public.” The device is clearly meant for exercise, like running and cycling, he writes.

 Will it ever reach the market? No one knows for sure, according to Krause, but the survey may tell Motorola whether it should. 

Deborah DiSesa Hirsch is an award-winning health and technology writer who has worked for newspapers, magazines and IBM (News - Alert) in her 20-year career. To read more of her articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Rich Steeves