Last year at CES, Mio Global, a Vancouver-based startup best known for its heart rate tracking technology, said it was working on a new wearable and new method of activity tracking to go along with it. Now that wearable is finally shipping.
The Mio Slice is a wrist-worn activity tracker with optical heart rate sensors that gives wearables a score — called PAI, or Personal Activity Intelligence — instead of simply telling them how many steps they’ve taken or estimating how many calories they’ve burned. Mio’s algorithms for PAI are based partly on an extensive, long-term health study conducted in Norway between 1984 and 2008 that showed a correlation between a high resting heart rate and increased cardiovascular risk.
In short, Mio thinks that setting activity goals around 10,000 steps or minutes or exercise are vague, and that the best way to track activity is through heart rate. A lot of other activity-tracking wearables, including Fitbit, show a daily step count along with other metrics.
The Slice wearable goes on sale today for $129 and comes in four colors. Mio said it’s also showing an Apple Watch version of its PAI app at CES this year, as well as a separate heart rate sensing module called the Link 2. Pricing and availability for the Link 2 are still unknown.