LETSCOM Fitness Tracker HR
Do a search on Amazon in the United States for the best selling activity band and a surprising name tops the list – LETSCOM Fitness Tracker HR. One would have expected a Fitbit or perhaps Xiaomi Mi Band. A statement to the popularity of the LETSCOM are the more than 5,000 reviews it has on the retail giant’s platform, most of which are positive.
Essential reading: Top fitness trackers and health gadgets
If you’ve been wanting to buy a budget activity band, this is obviously one of the options to consider. Particularly if you’ve never used a fitness device before, so are looking to test the waters without spending lots of cash.
Ok, we know LETSCOM Fitness Tracker HR is not expensive. But is it any good? Read on for our full review.
LETSCOM Fitness Tracker HR comes across as your standard activity band. There are several models to choose from. The functionality is pretty much the same across all of them, the only difference is in design.
I tested the ID115PlusHR variant. Unlike some of the other versions this one does not come with a colour display. Instead there’s an OLED 0.96 inch B&W screen which responds to touch if you tap along its bottom edge.
The display looks crisp and clean enough, easy to read indoors. However, visibility deteriorates quite rapidly in direct sunlight. It does help, though, that the fonts are quite large.
There are customisation options if you prefer another clock face and these can be accessed from the smartphone app. The screen is off by default but it springs to life when you lift your wrist or tap on it. This works pretty well.
Navigation is done by tapping or swiping along the bottom edge. The “virtual button” is very responsive and I had no problems whatsoever quickly flicking through the menus.
Tap once to move from the clock to your daily step count. Subsequent taps will take you through to the heart rate screen, and options to start tracking a walk, run or bike activity. A long-press is used to start an activity or delve further into your daily activity stats.
The device feels quite well built and sturdy. It’s also light and comfortable on the wrist, so much so that you’ll quickly forget you are wearing it. In many ways it comes across as a slightly wider Fitbit Alta HR.
The replaceable strap is made of silicone, and the sides of the display are protected by a hard shell. At the underside of the unit are a couple of green LEDs which are used to monitor your heart rate. This is a one-size fits all affair, so as long as your wrist circumference is between 5.4 and 7.6 inches, you’re good to go.
With IP67 water resistance, LETSCOM Fitness Tracker HR is only splash-proff. You are okay to wear it in rain or while washing hands or dishes. But don’t plan on keeping it on when showering, swimming or diving.
In terms of internal smarts, the tracker is fitted with an accelerometer and an optical heart rate sensor. Powering the thing is a 65mAh battery that will keep the tracker going between 5 and 10 days. That’s pretty good battery life but keep in mind that heart rate tracking is not continuous.
When you take the tracker out of the box you might be puzzled that there is no charging cable. That’s because you don’t need one.
The silicone straps can easily be pulled out from the sides of the main unit revealing a built-in USB plug. From there it’s a matter of simply slotting the main unit into any USB outlet. A full charge from zero to full only takes a couple of hours. It’s a neat way of doing things and it means one less cable to keep track of. However, it might not be to everyone’s taste.
Once you’ve charged your tracker, its time to install the VeryFitPro app from the iTunes Store or the Google Play Store. The setup involves opening an account, answering a few basic questions (gender, weight, height, age and daily step and sleep targets) and pairing your device via Bluetooth.
Once this is done, a sync can be initialised by opening the app and swiping down on the main display. All your details will find their way from your tracker to the app in a few seconds. I had no problems syncing the device with my iPhone app during the couple of weeks of use.
The fitness band covers most of the basics. This means you’ll get info on step count, calories, distance, activities (14 different exercises including running, walking biking, hiking) and more. There is no altimeter so the floor count is not part of the feature-set.
Sleep statistics are quite detailed. You’ll get sleep stage information including stats on Deep sleep, Light sleep and awake hours.
As mentioned there’s a built-in heart rate monitor, too, which spits out daily stats on your maximum heart rate, average heart rate and resting heart rate. Tracking is not continuous although your heart rate is sampled more often if you are tracking an activity.
The app is a pretty basic affair that serves the purpose. The Homepage is a daily activity dashboard. For a more long term view head over to the Details tab. There you can see weekly, monthly and yearly breakdowns.
The Device tab allows for setting Call/Sedentary/Alarm and SNS alerts, tweaking the heart rate detection settings and more. Finally the User tab allows you to amend personal info, set targets, troubleshoot and more.
The obvious question is to do with the accuracy of stats. Now you need to keep in mind that this is a budget fitness tracker. So while you will get information on all of the above, the accuracy is going to lag compared to what you’d get from leading brands.
For example for step count, I found that the tracker consistently under-reported compared to the Forerunner 935 on my other wrist. But, activity tracking is not an exact science and you will struggle to find two fitness trackers that dish out the same stats.
What’s important is the you wear the same fitness tracker on your wrist day after day. This way you’re comparing like with like so can view trends and look to improve. Having said that, the heart rate tracking will definitely leave serious and semi-serious runners wanting more.
One interesting option that you don’t normally get from a budget fitness band is the ability to connect to the GPS signal on your phone for more detailed tracking of your outdoor walks, runs, cycle rides or hikes. This also produces a detailed map of your movements that can be found post-exercise in the app.
It takes a little figuring out how to get this to work. You are not able to connect to GPS from the tracker. Instead, you need to tap on the large + sign in the smartphone app. In addition to letting you manually add weight and activity, there is a little GPS icon. Click on this, choose the type of activity and start tracking. The GPS info will appear both on the smartphone app screen and fitness tracker display.
There are a few non-fitness features, as well. This includes remote camera control, anti-lost alert, find Phone and notifications. When a call or text comes through you’ll receive on discreet vibration on your wrist. The device also displays partial text messages (up to 12 letters).
LETSCOM is clearly not as well known as Fitbit, Garmin or Xiaomi, but its products offer many of the same features at a fraction of the price. This is probably why the brand’s fitness bands are such popular sellers.
It’s all there – steps, distance, calories, sleep, activity tracking, smartphone notifications. You even get Connected GPS for more detailed tracking of outdoor exercise. Mind you, the accuracy is not as good as you’d get if you were to purchase a mainstream brand product. But these options sell at 2 or 3 times the price.
LETSCOM Fitness Tracker HR
All things considered, as an entry level device LETSCOM Fitness Tracker HR is perfectly adequate. A low cost way to see what the activity tracking craze is all about.
The fitness band looks good, it’s lightweight, it feels comfortable on the wrist and it has a multitude of features. For basic heart rate monitoring and fitness tracking, it works well. For anything else you’ll be better off shelling out a few more bucks and going for one of the pricier options.
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