A different kind of fitness tracker

We all know the Apple Watch, Fitbit and other fitness trackers that sit on the wrist, but there are alternatives that help you get fit in a less obvious way.

Most are not well known and I am not recommending any as I know little about them, but it is interesting what brands are doing to tackle this need in a different way.

WHOOP

I like the design, potentially timeless, and it includes heart rate monitoring and sleep tracking as standard, but it does look big on the wrist. What makes it different is the fact that accessories are promoted to allow you to wear it on your upper arm and to clip it to clothing which adds useful flexibility. The other difference is that the device is free with a $30/month membership which may deter some.

Trivoly

The tracking disc underneath a traditional watch idea has been tried before by Chronos https://wearchronos.com and by all accounts the Chronos product was an unmitigated disaster. It was unreliable, customers complained and the support was non-existent. Trivoly is (I presume?) A different company and it offers notifications, music playback and heart rate sensing. My first concern is the depth of the disc under a watch and of course how well it will work. The Chronos vibes sadly live on. It is €149.

Sony Wena Pro

Expensive at £249 and with no heart rate monitoring (there is the £199 Wena Active version with heart rate) the Wena Pro is effectively a watch strap that offers smart fitness functionality within a large than average buckle. The idea is theoretically brilliant, but reviews suggest that it is not as practical in the real world as it may appear.

Oura Ring

Now this is very different. A ring which includes sleep tracking, various fitness scores, trends, body temperature sensing, activity goals and 1 week of battery life sounds crazy, but by all accounts it works. The lack of heart rate monitoring is always a problem in my eyes because accurate activity tracking is so difficult without it, but I applaud the idea and the implementation. $299 is not to be sniffed at though.

I would also suggest taking a look at the following-

Moov

Bellabeat

Withings

Milestone Pod

The main worry I have with the above trackers is not so much the reliability or the overall performance, but for how long the manufacturers will be in business for. This segment of the fitness industry is littered with companies who gave up in relatively short order which is worrying for products that you ideally want to use for many years.

Ultimately it is all too easy to stick with the big players because at least you know that they should stick around and that the software will continue to be developed, but trying something different can be a good thing. The choice is yours.



Categories: Articles, Fitness, Fitness Trackers, Smartwatches, Wareable

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