I spent a week putting the latest Amazon tracker through its paces, including runs, indoor cycles, and yoga. The $3.99-per-month health service is the real star. At $79.99, the AMOLED color screen, sleek design, video workouts, and nutrition services make it worth a look, especially for those motivated to get active for less.
Amazon’s Halo View is a lower-cost Fitbit alternative with workout guides.
Amazon Halo View is a cheaper Fitbit alternative. Halo is simple, efficient, and offers advanced health features. The Halo View ditches the original Halo band’s creepy microphones for a fitness tracker-like device. The membership is free for a year and includes heart rate, blood oxygen, and activity tracking.
The Halo View is similar to the Fitbit Inspire 2 or Charge 5, with a slim rectangular design and a color screen. Halo View’s body scans, tone analysis, workouts, guides, and recipes require a yearly membership. Fitbit trackers include all core features out of the box. The Halo View’s thin, rectangular design and color touch screen aren’t revolutionary, but they’re a departure from the screenless Halo band and are in line with Fitbit trackers. The View’s color screen is more engaging than the Fitbit 2’s.
The rectangular hull contains activity-tracking sensors, while the rear includes the main sensor array to measure heart rate and blood oxygen.
The upgraded Halo View is comfortable and similar to the Fitbit Inspire 2. It has charging pins and band-swapping buttons. Active Black, Lavender Dream, and Sage Green are pre-attached bands. It was easy to use, but we had trouble securing the sensor to our wrist. Looser bands made blood oxygen monitoring difficult.
The View’s charging clip takes just over two hours. It took me a few tries to dock it successfully, but I got almost seven days of use on one charge.
As of now, it falls short of the Fitbit Inspire 2, which offers ten days on one charge. I couldn’t test the Halo View in a pool or ocean, but it’s swim-proof and water-resistant up to 50 meters. I wore it in the rain and showered with it without problems. This matches Fitbit’s resistance and durability.
Amazon uses a point system to track your health, which is now displayed on the touch screen. Yes, they show steps, heart rate, and calories burned, but they also let you reflect on your overall health and body by hitting 150 points per week (AHA). This can be adjusted based on your fitness and health goals and includes reminders to move if you’re stationary, like Apple Watch activity rings.
Today’s fitness trackers go beyond steps, calories, and active minutes.
Fitbit Sense measures ECG, blood oxygen, heart rate, and stress. Halo View has skin temperature, heart rate, and blood oxygen sensors. I liked that the Halo 2’s heart rate was as accurate as the original. Because the band must be tight and your arm still, blood oxygen was hit or miss. It initially failed, but the result resembled a stand-alone pulse oximeter and pricier fitness trackers.
You can also choose watch faces and notifications, including texts. A larger color screen makes notifications easier to read than on Inspire 2. The Halo View dropped the mood-analyzing microphone from the original Halo Band, but the app can still measure your voice in real-time. I did not particularly appreciate how it insisted I was angry. The app still offers optional body scans. The body scan feels like something from “Black Mirror” and the sci-fi future. I did not particularly appreciate that it scanned your body in minimal clothing for a BMI. It’s optional and not for everyone.
Halo View is a simple fitness tracker without it. As with the original Halo, the View’s upgraded membership includes workouts, body scans, health plans, and nutritional guides. Similar to Apple Fitness+ or Peloton, I found a mix of instructors, and I especially like the varied meditation instructions, which let you jump right in. Strength and yoga classes are also fun. I tried a few classes.
Amazon will integrate live, on-screen Halo View metrics during workouts in the coming months. I’m excited to try this similar Apple Watch Fitness+ integration. Fitbit’s Premium Membership includes workout guides. Halo’s approach is more personalized; it matches you with courses that fit your needs.
The Halo View fitness tracker costs $79.99. It offers accurate tracking and a compact color touch screen to view data. It doesn’t beat the Fitbit Inspire 2 in value or features. The original Halo’s onboard microphones have been removed, which will calm many people’s privacy fears. However, tone analysis and body scans remain in the app. The fitness service can help you live a healthier life for $3.99 per month after a free year.
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