Nokia marks its wearables debut with a great app, wellness programs

Earlier this month Withings devices and software were re-branded under the Nokia umbrella. This concludes the transition which commenced with the Finish company’s acquisition of the French outfit just over a year ago.

To mark the occasion, Nokia announced two new digital health products – the Nokia Body scale and Nokia BPM+.

Nokia’s new scale is available for $60 (view on Amazon or health.nokia.com), and provides information on weight, BMI and daily weather forecast. This is essentially a less expensive version of the renamed Body+ and Body Cardio scales.

Nokia has also introduced the BPM+ blood pressure monitor. The compact and travel friendly gadget features a soft, more comfortable cuff and is FDA-cleared and medical CE approved. BPM+ is available at health.nokia.com and will set you back $129.95.

Essential reading: Which Nokia fitness tracker is right for me?

But that’s not all. On the same day as these were revealed, the Withings Health Mate app was updated to the Nokia name. The only problem was, the app was launched with its fair share of by bugs. For example (and to my horror), all my historical weight data going back 4 years had mysteriously dissapeared!

Thankfully, Nokia has been hard at work over the past few days and many of the issues have been ironed out. I was very relieved this morning to find all my historical data back in its proper place. Other fixes include: weight and body composition measurements now appear in imperial system; Steel HR synchronisation; and Apple Health integration. Nokia says BMI, nutrition tracking with MyFitnessPal, environmental sensors (CO2, temperature), and normality ranges for weight and body composition curves are yet to come. You can read more on this link.

All things considered, long-term users of the Withings app will not be dissapointed. Nokia’s new software offers up much more than just a name change and pretty new design.

The platform is built around three axes: tracking your health, keeping you motivated and installing and using Nokia devices. The app is in a sense, a central repository that aggregates all Nokia device data to provide a holistic view of your health.

Depending on the device(s) that you own, the app will keep tabs on your activity, heart rate, weight (along with body fat, muscle mass, body water, etc), pulse wave velocity and blood pressure. All this is displayed in an easy to view dashboard, as well as a detailed weekly/monthly/yearly graph.

Nokia Health Mate also puts a strong emphasis on motivation. For example, you can now add your friends and family to the app Leaderboard for a bit of friendly competition.

Once you have started using your tracker or smartwatch for a few days, the app will provide you with insights that highlight your achievements and areas of improvement. Most big name companies such as Fitbit and Garmin have had this for a while. The app also conjures up a system of badges and virtual rewards if that sort of thing motivates you.

Perhaps the biggest change of all are the Wellness Programs. There are a number to choose from based on what you need to work on.

For example, there is an eight week long Sleep Smarter programme. The app will assess your sleep patterns during this period, calculate a daily rating, highlight overall trends, and dish up suggestions on how to develop healthier patterns. Other programmes include Better Body, Pregnancy Tracker and Healthier Heart.

Now that the tech giant Nokia is behind the app, its a safe bet more functionality will be added in the months to come. Health has been a long-term focus of Nokia and we are sure both the software and hardware will grow from strength to strength.

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