Telling the time has evolved over the eons from Sundials to mechanical gears to dot matrix and LCDs and now digital. But what hasn’t changed until recently has been the use of a timepiece — to tell the time (and sometimes to include the day and month). But the first aspect of a watch on the wrist has always been its looks — fake Rolex’s abound while Casio’s don’t. And so the basic shape of a wristwatch, that being a round dial surrounding an hour, minute and second hand, has survived the years and continues to be the classic to emulate. So even though the Steel HR Sport Hybrid Smartwatch combines analog and digital, it continues this classic round dial and the classic set of hands telling the time by looking at each hand and its position against the dial: the second hand being set inside its own “dial” near the bottom of the major dial, and the minute/second hands being directed against the outer edge where 60 goes in 5 point increments around going clockwise. All else found on the watch itself is the stem (another classic). The final classic for the look is having a gun metal/silver edge to the dial, with a black interior and the hands being similar in looks to the edge.
So why is this called a hybrid watch? It’s because it combines the analog (see above) and the digital — which we’ll get to now. But first let’s note that it uses Bluetooth to sync with a smartphone, because that’s how it is able to to accomplish a number of goals (and also saves on battery/CPU use). So if you’ve an iPhone or Android phone, you’ll be able to sync and see text, event and app notifications — these will appear on the face. And as to what is being seen, for sure you can personalize it to your liking.
A more recent addition to smart watches has been the ability to track a person’s vitals for health and sports use. The Health Mate app is called in for this and ties in with a sensor on the watch’s underside to give information such as continuous heartbeat monitoring, with the ability to track a number of activities, sports and such — activities like sleep with alarm, tracking of sports (expected running, cycling and swimming but also others like yoga and badminton among others).
The app also provides personalized couching, based on the information being provided. Online connectivity works without a subscription via Cloud. And since the a with Apple’s Health and Google’s Fit, that can only be good.
Get A Good Night’s Sleep
It’s worth noting that sleeping plays an important part of what this smartwatch can do. Providing that you wear it to bed, it will auto track your sleeping — both the light sleep as well as the deep sleep cycles and their duration. As well as the sleep quality. There’s also a smart wake-up feature for waking the person up at the best time based on the sleep cycle the watch has been tracking.
Now one of the big problems with smart watches is how often they need recharging. The Steel HR Sport has to be recharged, but a few hours on the power translates into days of use — Withings says up to 25 days which, in comparison to that well known smartwatch, seems insanely good. Heck, even half that time beats the band. But so as to not get confused, this is with using normal processes -- if the watch is put in “workout” mode, then the amount of days of use drops due to heavier battery use (4-5 days being the results on average).
The HR Sport is available in 40mm in size, which is large enough for most, without being overly obvious (that’s true of the silent alarm built in as well). The stainless steel case gives it a firm “grip” on the wrist as well. The basic watch band continues this theme, although replacement bands are able to be had. Not mentioning that it was water resistant to 50 meters would be a mistake, so now it’s rectified. For further details head over to