Don’t shine on, you crazy diamond


I bought my wife a Misfit Shine, a fitness tracker, when they were first launched via Kickstarter. The unique thing about the Shine is that instead of looking like an appalling gadget, all plastic and rubber and such, it’s a wonderfully minimal metal disc, more akin to jewellery than a glorified pedometer. Also, it runs on a hearing aid battery rather than something rechargeable, which means you can wear it for six months without worrying about having to charge it.

But of course, there are downsides.

The first Shine had a loose strap and fell out of our kitchen window while my wife was putting out the laundry. It fell 21 floors and was never seen again.

The second one died for no apparent reason. I think we got a replacement, and that one, in fetching anodised green-blue, stuck to something metal (the Shine is powerfully magnetic, and I’m not sure why) and we never saw it again. It may still be somewhere in the Botanic Gardens, tracking away.

The next one I bought in New York last year, and it survived being slammed in a car door and three cycles in the washing machine, but it was looking a bit battered so I ordered a replacement, the Shine2. The Shine2 is prettier than its predecessors, in that it has coloured LEDs that light up and show the time, rather than the plain white LEDs of yore.

(When exactly did we get bored with white LEDs? Where is the poetry in our hearts now?)

I gave my wife this Shine for Christmas. As of two days ago it started malfunctioning, and now it’s kaput, which is a record time to failure, especially given we had to actively kill most of the rest.

However, Misfit Wearables, the manufacturer (just purchased by Fossil, of all people) have great customer service, and so there’s a replacement on its way to us now. I hope this one lasts longer than the rest did. It’s ridiculous that I can’t keep track of how many trackers we’ve destroyed…

(At least three Shines, two Fitbits and a Garmin Forerunner. What’s next?)


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