Smart bands are all the rage right now, especially among fitness enthusiasts and those tracking their vital signs 24/7. After all, it is super convenient to have a fitness buddy fitting comfortably around your wrist aiding you to get the most out of your fitness and health journey.
With so many fantastic smart bands released in 2020 and 2021, you may feel overwhelmed to know which one will be most compatible with you. We have delved into the capabilities and shortcomings of the top three smart bands trending now.
Top smart band features to look out for in 2021
Once you have experienced the camaraderie of a smart band snugged around your wrist, it will be hard to imagine life without it. A smart band can elevate your fitness journey to new heights and help you to keep your health in tip-top shape. So, if you are currently scouting for a smart band, you can expect the following fitness, health and smart life assistance features:
The variety of sports modes the latest smart bands include have grown tremendously over the years. You can now have a range of sports activities like walking, running, hiking, swimming, rowing and cycling. Some smart band models even include rope skipping, skateboarding and windsurfing. They can also include training tips, personalised workout plans and much more.
If your purpose of getting a smart band is to monitor and improve your health, you can at least expect the latest smart bands to monitor and record your heart rate, sleeping patterns, blood oxygen saturation and stress levels. Other features may include a menstrual cycle tracker for females and a blood pressure and body temperature monitor.
Smart life assistance
And finally, we all want our life to be made as uncomplicated as possible. The top smart bands have useful smart life features making life a bit easier. Some of these features include incoming call reminders and message notifications, a timer and stopwatch, weather forecast notifications, a calendar and time.
Let’s look at three of the best performing smart bands on South African soil now.
HUAWEI Band 6: The new band on the block
Just released in June 2021, The HUAWEI Band 6 is red hot off the press. With an exciting variety of 96 sports modes including a smart running companion, it promises to revolutionise any fitness enthusiast’s fitness journey.
The HUAWEI Band 6 includes a remarkable 1.47 inch amoled FullView Display with a 64% screen-to-body ratio. This means this chic smart band can display more information than its predecessors. With an incredible 2-week battery life with super-fast charging, this smart band fits like a glove for individuals living in the fast lane.
With its effective health management features compacted in this snazzy, innovative wristband, the HUAWEI Band 6 certainly earned its place among the top smart bands to consider. Some of the health management capabilities include an all-day SpO2 monitoring, a TruSeenTM 4.0 heart rate monitoring and stress level monitoring. It further monitors your sleep and can detect a range of sleeping disturbances and provide suggestions for improved sleep.
Retailing at a price of R1 699, the HUAWEI Band 6 is fantastic value for your money.
The only feature you may miss in this innovative smart band is that there is no GPS built into the smart band but you can pair your phone with your smart band to enjoy the benefits of a GPS.
Fitbit Charge 4: A super convenient fitness buddy
Get charged to push yourself to new fitness levels with the Fitbit Charge 4. Considered the best buy in South Africa in 2020, the Fitbit Charge 4 is an excellent fitness buddy for those on a fitness journey.
One of the handy features includes a built-in GPS allowing you to track your movement on your smart band without having to carry the extra weight of your phone during your exercise. And if you love to exercise on the beat of your favourite tunes, you can control your Spotify Playlist with a few easy swipes on your smart band.
From a health perspective, the Fitbit Charge monitors your heart rate and gives you a personalised view when you are in fat burn, cardio or peak zone in terms of your age and resting heart rate. It also includes SpO2 monitoring, stress and sleep monitoring.
Another useful addition is that you can load your credit and debit cards to make contactless payments on the go.
The Fitbit Charge currently retails at a price of R2 499. It is however disappointing to note that a smart band considered one of the top smart bands in 2020 and at a price range over R2 000 does not have a colourful screen.
There is also no phone notification feature, meaning if you exercise without your phone you may miss important phone calls and messages coming in. The battery life extends up to seven days which is decent but compared to some smart bands clocking 14 days battery life, there is room for improvement.
Lace up your shoes and get ready for a matchless running experience. With the Garmin Forerunner 45 fitting comfortably around your wrist, you have a running companion pushing you to reaching new running goals.
The Garmin Forerunner 45 Watch features GPS navigation so you can track your progress and route. It also allows you to enjoy the benefits of a personal trainer with the free Garmin Coach with adjustable training plans.
With its top-notch performance analytics, the Garmin Forerunner 45 is an excellent choice for runners. Like other smart bands, it also monitors your heart rate at the wrist and has a variety of sport modes to choose from.
Smart life assistance features like call and message notifications are also included as well as controls for music playing on your phone.
The Garmin Forerunner 45 Watch is a bit pricy compared to other smart bands as it retails at a price of R3 399.
If you love swimming, you will be disappointed to know that it does not include a swimming mode. You also cannot listen to music without your phone while working out and it does not include contactless payments. Battery life is reasonable at seven days but if you use your GPS, your battery will only last 13 hours.
And this sums up our list of the top smart bands to consider if you would like to enter the smart band arena for the first time, or maybe you would like to upgrade your existing smart band. Once you have enjoyed the benefits of having a smart buddy on your wrist 24/7, it is hard to imagine life without them. Happy shopping!