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Sony SmartBand Talk's e-ink screen promises long life for fitness fanatics (pictures)

We take a close look at the Sony SmartBand Talk, a fitness band with an e-ink screen for extended battery life and a microphone to take your phone calls.

Andrew Lanxon headshot
Andrew Lanxon headshot
Andrew Lanxon
Andrew is CNET's go-to guy for product coverage and lead photographer for Europe. When not testing the latest phones, he can normally be found with his camera in hand, behind his drums or eating his stash of home-cooked food. Sometimes all at once.
Andrew Lanxon
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With so many different fitness bands floating around, it's difficult for a new one to make a statement. To help it cut through the crowd, Sony has equipped its SmartBand Talk with a battery-friendly e-ink screen, as well as a microphone and speaker to let it make and receive calls via your phone.

There's no word on exactly where it'll be going on sale yet, but it's due to hit shops later this year for €159. That converts to around £125, $210 and AU$225.

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Unlike typical LCD displays, e-ink screens can always be on without draining the battery -- it only uses power when it refreshes what's onscreen.

Sony hasn't said exactly how long the battery should last, but with an efficient display, you should be able to get at least a few days between charges.

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The e-ink display isn't touchscreen, so you'll need these physical buttons on the side to change what's onscreen or to take calls.

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I found the white model a little plain, but this black and orange model is more exciting.

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The band is reasonably comfortable to wear. It's totally waterproof, too, so you can keep it on in the shower after a workout.

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There are plenty of notches in the strap to get the correct fit.

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These little pegs simply push into the holes on the strap. It's a lighter system than the metal clasp used on Sony's new SmartWatch 3.

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With a microphone and speaker onboard, you can make and receive calls using the band, via your phone.

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That does mean, of course, that you'll have to shout your conversation into your wrist as you walk down the street, as well as have everyone around you hear what's being said. It's not ideal for private conversations.

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