Developed by Philips, DirectLife is a pocket-sized plastic device that also uses motion sensors to measure a user’s daily energy expenditure. These measurements are combined with the user’s age, gender, height, and weight before being converted to the number of calories burned during each activity. Unlike most exercise gadgets, DirectLife does not display numerical data; instead it uses green indicator lights to show activity level. A single green light indicates level zero, meaning there is little chance of waistline reduction. Each additional green light represents a 15 percent increase toward a user’s daily target.
DirectLife takes activity monitoring further than other devices by having fitness and nutrition experts assess a user’s activity data and recommend an exercise plan. These “coaches” are available to answer questions and motivate users. Another benefit: the device is waterproof.
DirectLife has to be worn in a user’s pocket or around her neck, and the data can be uploaded to the Web by connecting it to a computer. Cost: $100.