New Jawbone UP has just been announced: wireless synchronization at last!

Jawbone UpThe new version of the Jawbone UP activity tracker has just been announced. This comes rather as a surprise, although everybody was eagerly anticipating a variant of the wristband capable of wireless synchronization.

While competitors like Nike, Fitbit and Withings were steadily increasing their wireless capabilities, the UP still found itself in limbo as a result of a truly impossible synchronization method: you had to plug the wristband into the headphone jack of your iPhone.

Those days seem to be in past, as earlier today Jawbone announced the UP24, the follow-up to the popular UP. It looks like a game of spot the differences — at first look it seems difficult to distinguish between the old and new wristband.

Nevertheless, differences in the design can be identified. In the above picture, we see the original UP in the center, flanked by the new UP24. You can see a few minimal differences in the pattern on the wristband.

But the main differences are technical in nature: the UP is finally able to synchronize with your smartphone via Bluetooth. However, this means more is asked of the battery, reducing the stand-by time from 10 to ‘just’ 7 days.

Unfortunately, the headphone jack issue isn’t gone for good. The plug is still used to connect the wristband to the charger. This means a common complaint — users kept losing the plug’s cap — has gone unsolved.

What is striking is that the size of the jack has been reduced from 3.5 to 2.5mm, so that users can no longer synchronize their wristband using the plug.

For now, the Jawbone UP24 is only available for iOS devices, although its manufacturer claims it is working on Android support. Jawbone attributes this delay to the broad variation in handsets and hardware specifications.

For $149 you can be the owner of a Jawbone UP24. For now, the original remains on sale at a price of $129. The UP24 will come in 2 colors and can be ordered as of now through Jawbone’s web shop. The activity tracker will be available from Apple Stores as of November 19.