Withings were one of the first companies to mix connected fitness tracking with an analog display and a touch of class. The Withings Activite is Swiss made and is still one of the finest wearables around.
Their latest wearable, the Withings Steel HR adds heart rate monitoring and smartphone notifications. The new wearable is the first smart analog watch with a built-in heart rate sensor.
It looks very similar to the original Activite except the goal progress dial has been moved to the bottom center, a new digital display has been added to the top center, and a new button added to the side.
In terms of looks, the original Activite, especially the Sapphire version, is very hard to beat. Everything is the right size and it offers a perfect mix of simplicity and style. For me, the new Withings Steel HR doesn’t look quite as good as the original, but it makes up for it with added functionality.
Withings’ new smart analog watch come fitness tracker will be available in two sizes: 36mm with an 18mm strap; and a more rugged looking 40mm version with a thicker bezel and 20mm strap. The watch face background and straps will be available in either black or white.
Three screens make up the smart analog display: A traditional watch dial to tell the time; an additional dial to show the progress towards your daily fitness goal; and a dynamic digital display to show your heart rate, fitness metrics and notifications.
The Withings Steel HR will keep track of your steps, distance, calories, sleep, and heart rate. It features automatic activity detection for running, walking and swimming; and will auto detect when you fall asleep and wake up. There’s also a vibrating alarm to help you out of the sack in the morning.
The heart rate monitor works 24/7. It provides insights on your maximum heart rate and how much time you spend in different heart rate zones. It also monitors your sleeping heart rate, so you can see how your ticker is performing while you snooze.
As well as continuously tracking your resting heart rate, the HRM can be activated on demand for workouts by pressing the button on the side, and it automatically activates when you start running.
The Withings Steel HR connects wirelessly to your smartphone using Bluetooth. When you receive an incoming call, text or email, it will vibrate. You can also set silent alarms to remind you of calendar appointments.
The stylish smart analog watch uses a rechargeable battery that, frankly, puts most other wrist-worn HRMs to shame. It lasts up to 25 days between charges. There’s also a power transition feature which means the watch switches to power-saving mode giving you an extra 20 days of juice for activity tracking and time keeping.
The battery used by the original Activite lasts for around 6 months and never needs charging. The additional features that come with the new Steel HR are more demanding, but 25 days of full use from one charge beats any other wearable in its class.
The Withings Health Mate app is compatible with iOS and Android devices.
The shiny new Steel HR has a 5 ATM water-resistance rating (50 meters). It is perfectly safe for swimming and will automatically track your calorie output in the pool.
Price and Release Date
All versions of the Withings Steel HR will be available from the beginning of October 2016 exclusively from the Withings Store. The sleek smart analog fitness watch will be arriving at other retailers at the end of October.
The 36mm version will cost $179.95 USD; the 40mm version will cost $199.95 USD.
It looks Withings have once again succeeded in creating the perfect blend of smart analog and activity tracking, this time with a HRM and notifications.
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