BodyMedia CORE 2 hands-on

BodyMedia has revealed its latest health-monitoring system, the CORE 2, the company's attempt to slim down its sensor-strap to help wearers slim-down too. Smaller than Apple's iPod nano, and yet accommodating four sensors and Bluetooth Smart Ready 4.0, the CORE 2 – previewed in prototype form at CES 2013 this week – can funnel fitness stats directly to your smartphone and tablet.

Temperature, heat flux, galvanic skin response, and a 3-axis accelerometer are all squeezed inside a compact dongle that can be worn on an arm strap or elsewhere on the body. Each sensor tracks data at 5,000 records per minute, and the CORE 2 can be paired with an optional heart-rate monitor strap.

All of the data collected will be sent to the BodyMedia mobile app, using low-power Bluetooth 4.0 (on devices that support it) to keep the information up to date minute-to-minute. That's in contrast to rival systems like Jawbone's UP, which only synchronize when you plug them in.

Those stats will also be uploaded to the web-based Activity Manager, complete with a FIT coach which can make suggestions for exercise, diet, and other elements. That guidance will be given as easy-to-understand instructions – such as "Hop on the treadmill and walk for about 1 hour at a speed of 4 mph and you can hit your calorie burn goal today" – to reduce confusion.

What you see in our photos now, however, is going to get even smaller by the time the CORE 2 goes on sale. BodyMedia tells us that the fitness device will end up being the size of a quarter, once the company's engineers have had their way. There'll be interchangeable fascias, too, when the CORE 2 hits shelves in August 2013; pricing tbc.