First announced way back at CES 2014, the Netatmo June bracelet is a UV monitor that’s designed to keep you safe from the sun’s harmful rays. It’s now on sale for around $110, so we thought we better test it out.
Described by its maker as “your new beauty coach”, the June’s primary function is limit your exposure to the sun, keeping your skin healthier as well as preventing the onset of pesky wrinkles.
Designed to look like a piece of jewellery, the June is a certainly a handsome wearable, but is it useful?
Read our full review to find out…
Netatmo June: How it works
Like most wearable tech, the June connects to your smartphone phone via a low-power Bluetooth connection.
UVA and UVB sensors on the wrist-based tracker measure your sun exposure, while the dedicated app processes the data and gives you the UV index in real time (it’s based on the World Health Organisation’s UV Index).
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After looking at your skin type and UV exposure, June calculates your recommended daily sun dose and updates you on how much of it you’ve had. June sends notifications to keep you protected, telling you when it’s time to apply SPF, what level of SPF to use and whether you need sunglasses or a hat.
Netatmo June: Design and Build
The Netatmo June is better looking than most wearable trackers aimed at women, having been designed by French jewellery designer Camille Toupet,
The wrist-mounted tracker comes in platinum, gold or gunmetal – we had the gold version to try out. June is supplied with two attractive double straps – one black leather and one black silicone for sportier types.
The tracker slides onto the wristband easily – in fact we found that it slid onto the rubber wristband a little too easily and would easily detach if caught on a sleeve or jogged too much. Not ideal for a wristband that’s intended for active users.
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Due to the clip-on nature of the tracker, you can supposedly also clip it onto clothing to wear as a brooch, but it’s clear that it’s really designed to wear on the wrist.
Like many wearables, June is splash, rain and sweat resistant but cannot be totally immersed in water. Netatmo warns that it should only be cleaned with a dry cloth, without using any solvent.
Not being waterproof is a huge omission on a gadget that’s supposed to keep you from burning in the sun as you can’t wear it when you’re swimming outside – probably one of the times you’re most likely to get burned.
Netatmo June: Smartphone app
The free app can be used on iPhones running iOS 7 or later, but there’s no option for Android users just yet.
Setup is easy – simply sign up with an email and password then answer a few quick questions so that the app can determine your skin type and therefore how susceptible it is to sun damage.
With blue eyes, dark brown hair and entirely sun-roastable pale skin, we came out as being skin type 2.
The app gives you a UV forecast for the day and tracks your sun exposure accordingly. You can tell the app if you’re wearing sun cream, and it will re-calculate how long you should be in the sun on that basis.
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If you’ve had too much sun, you’ll get a notification on your phone. We can’t help but think that a notification on the actual device, via some sort of haptic technology would be more useful, otherwise you need to make sure that your phone is in sight.
The app is nice and simple to use, but the UI needs some serious thought. The white text on a pale blue background is practically impossible to read when out in bright daylight which is, of course, the time when you really need to see it.
Netatmo June: Battery life
The Netatmo takes several hours plugged into a USB port to charge up to full capacity, but once it’s fully powered it should last you a month, says the maker. We found that it was more like three weeks in reality.
The red light on the charger switches off when the battery is full, and there’s also a battery charge icon on the app that shows charging in real time. When the battery is running low, you’ll get a notification on your phone.
Netatmo June: Tracking
The June appears to need pretty much direct contact with the sun. For example, on one occasion, it told us that we’d only had 11 minutes of sun exposure when we knew that we’d been out in bright sunshine for at least 45 minutes.
It seems that it only needs to slip round your wrist or simply be blocked by your own shadow or that of the person next walking next to you and it won’t register that you’re out in the sun.
However, when sitting in direct sun in a pub garden or on the beach, it does its job perfectly. You just need to ensure that there are no obstructions.
The Netatmo June really is a great-looking wearable and one that we’re more than happy to wear but we wish that it did more. It has just one function, so we had to wear it alongside the watch and Jawbone UP24 that we wear on a daily basis making us feel slightly overloaded by wearables. We also feel that the lack of waterproofing, and slightly patchy tracking, are major issues. The June is great if you’re sitting in direct sun, but can be slightly more temperamental if you’re walking about, and of course if you want to go for a dip, you’ll have to remove it altogether. We really want to like the June as it’s probably the best looking wearable for women that we’ve seen so far, but without a few major improvements, it’s hard to fully recommend in its current form.
- Attractive, jewellery-like design
- Easy to set-up
- No sunburn
- Not waterproof
- Not secure on silicone band
- Needs to be in direct sunlight