UP3: The design story

Since we launched UP three years ago, fitness and sleep tracking have been transformed from a niche activity to an everyday experience for millions of UP users.

From the outset, we have tried to create a different kind of wearable, and it is no accident that Jawbone is widely recognized as a company that takes design seriously. Jawbone’s founder, Hosain Rahman, has always highly valued great design work and in partnership with him—including more than a decade of work—we have produced a range of products that we are hugely proud of.


While UP3 is our latest and most advanced tracker ever, the way our products fit into people’s lives has not changed at all. Our design foundation is deeply anchored in the mission to complement people’s personal style in a discreetly enhancing way providing actionable insights through devices that are an extension of them, not their phones. People love that our Insights help them live better lives, and the hardware that collects this data has to be equally beautiful and integrated into their lives.

UP3 is designed to be an accessory, with a clear line in the sand, demarcating our approach from other clunky and distracting tech devices. Our goal is to deliver a discreet and highly personal wearable experience, not one that constantly interrupts the user. UP3 contains some incredible technological innovations. However, this does not mean our wearables have to look like technology – the more advanced the engineering capabilities are, the more we have to be push for the fluid integration of these items into our everyday lives.

The original UP had the slimmest form factor on the wrist of any device on the market, enabling maximum wrist movement and making it incredibly comfortable. With UP3, we have gone even further and explored hundreds of internal component and sensor layouts, resulting in different widths and lengths of the band. These prototypes, often differing by as little as .3mm, were judged for comfort, size impression and proportions before we selected the optimal ergonomics for a variety of wrist sizes.

While the sector has evolved rapidly, at Jawbone the challenges are self-initiated, from incorporating advanced sensors that enable new and compelling personal data, to a complete overhaul of the assembly, materials and manufacturing of the UP product.

The greatest challengeand the greatest value propositionfor UP3 is the new sensor technology embedded into the flexible strap. This means UP3 can better measure activity and sleep patterns andwith the addition of a new bioimpedance sensorcan detect a much wider range of health data.

Getting the flexible strap right was a key priority. UP3 is one-size-fits-all device, a departure from previous Jawbone trackers. An innovative adjustable clasp was invented to allow for the sensor data to travel around the wrist and strap. The clasp mechanism allows the band to slide through a flat metal gate and lock in at just the right size for the user. This maximizes the exposure of the sensors on your skin. Achieving this was no small feat, and new clasps are rarely designed for this reason.

The engineering components are tucked inside a rigid and durable magnesium chassis, making it rain, splash, and sweat-resistant. A key part of the Jawbone design language is to differentiate our product lines with jewelry-like surface textures that present our users with varied choices in materials and finishes (MINI JAMBOX is a great example of this). So for UP3’s 5-axis CNC textures, we designed a range of patterns and colors (which we will roll out in the coming months) from sleek to sporty, with matching rubber, leather and woven bands. To achieve this same aesthetic in the low-key display, icons appear on the surface through hundreds of laser-etched openings.

We never think about hiding our components behind fashion clichés. Instead, we want to create wearables that express their high-tech function while creating new categories of beautiful and personal accessories. Taken together, the result is a beautiful UP3 in a class all its own. It works seamlessly with my style and my life, 24/7. That is the true future of technologynot just wearable technologysimple, discreet and beautiful accessories that help you live better, healthier and happier.



About The Author

Yves Behar

Yves Béhar is a design entrepreneur who believes that holistic product, digital, and brand design are cornerstones of any business. He is the founder and CEO of fuseproject, an integrated design and branding firm established in 1999, Chief Creative Officer at Jawbone, and co-founder of August, the next-generation home entry system. Béhar has collaborated with such companies as Herman Miller, GE, Puma, PayPal, SodaStream, Samsung, Issey Miyake, Prada, and Nivea, garnering over 200 awards. He believes that design should be a force for positive social and environmental change, and his work on One Laptop Per Child and See Better to Learn Better have made him the only designer to be honored with two INDEX Awards, as well as a Top 25 Visionary by TIME Magazine.