Fitness wearables are becoming popular, given the growing obsession with tracking steps walked, duration of activity and quality of sleep. The Timex Blink, priced at Rs4,495 and Rs4,995 (for the leather and metal options, respectively), and the significantly lower-priced Lenovo HW02 Plus and Riversong Wave Fit are three affordable options.
The style quotient
In terms of style, the Timex Blink’s luxurious design is gorgeous to look at. It is available in black, silver and rose-gold colour options for the stainless-steel frame, with the option of choosing between a metal bracelet and a leather strap that can be swapped easily.
In comparison, the Lenovo HW02 Plus and Riversong Wave Fit look more to-the-point and functional. The HW02 Plus offers the option of orange, blue and black straps. The Wave Fit, with its black colour, does not stand out on its own. While the Blink and the Wave Fit have 0.91-inch displays, the HW02 Plus has a smaller 0.42-inch display.
All three bands come with specific apps. The Timex Blink app (Android and iOS), Lenovo Healthy app (Android and iOS) and RS Band (Android and iOS) collect and collate tracking data from the wearable—steps walked, active hours in the day, sleep counter and more. You also get a daily breakdown of the activity, handy if you want to understand changing trends in your routine. You can also use the apps to configure the notifications from your phone that you want to send to your fitness band.
The Blink clocks seven days on a single charge, the Wave Fit lasts about five days and HW02 Plus manages a little more than seven days.
Tracking your moves
The Blink and HW02 Plus are very close in terms of the data collected for daily activity, such as steps walked and calories burnt—minor variation is to be expected, given the way motion sensors are calibrated in each device, the weight of the casing, and how tightly the user is wearing it. Occasionally, the Wave Fit even counted the hand movements while typing out a long document—software updates should take care of this.
The Blink is at a significant disadvantage because it does not have a heart-rate sensor. Calculations for calories burnt, for instance, would be more accurate with the heart-rate sensor data logging your body’s response in real time, rather than an approximation based on steps walked.
The HW02 Plus takes advantage of the Personal Activity Intelligence (PAI) technology to score your activity. The closer your score is to 100, the healthier you are; if you cross 100, that means your activity is going well. Lenovo licensed this tech from Mio Global. You can turn this off from the app, but it can be quite useful.
All three bands track sleep too. But wearing something on the wrist at night is not comfortable, and, second, the hours of light sleep and deep sleep are based on various algorithms, and give an approximate idea. The Timex Blink has a feature called Active Hours, and it does not consider the time you spent working on your computer as active enough—which means that the data you get at the end of what might otherwise have been a rather tiring day of mental work shows you as being inactive.
Which one to buy?
There is no doubt that the Timex Blink looks great, but it’s also more expensive than the Lenovo HW02 Plus and Riversong Wave Fit. The latter two have heart-rate sensors too. The HW02 gets our vote, just because of the PAI feature.