I was recently contacted by Beets Blu to ask if I would be interested in reviewing their heart rate monitor. I don't usually use a heart rate monitor as I find them a bit uncomfortable, and often they don't consistently measure my heart rate (it is annoying, mid-run, to be beeped at by my watch because my heart rate has purportedly stopped). However, I am always keen to find better alternatives to the rather old Polar strap I own.
|Beets Blu heart rate monitor and pager tag|
I know not all of you are interested in heart rate monitors, and because I don't share as many photos now my photo-a-day project is finished, I am interspersing my review with some recent Spring images in and around London.
Beets Blu is a fairly new company and started in 2012 with a focus on using wireless sensors with bluetooth smart technology. In addition to the heart rate monitor, they have a pager tag to ensure you don't lose keys / bags / similar (I was sent that to review as well) and they are soon to release a 'smart scale' for measuring body weight and body fat.
The heart rate monitor works by communicating directly with a compatible app on your phone. This means you need a phone with the necessary bluetooth technology, but most current Android and iPhone models are supported (you can check details on the Beets Blu website). Helpfully, though, it also means you don't need to install a new app to use the monitor. I don't like loading my phone up with hundreds of apps so this appealed to me. I synced it to Map My Run, but there are lots of apps you can use, including dedicated heart rate tracker apps.
I found the heart rate monitor communicated well with Map My Run, and it found and held my heart rate on the short run I tested it on. I also found the monitor strap to be comfortable and easily adjustable. All in all, it has given me a heart rate monitor that I like far more than my previous one. In saying that, if you want to monitor your heart rate during exercise it is a bit harder to do that via a phone. I'm also unable to comment on the battery life, but some Amazon reviews suggest the battery may not last for as long as the year claimed.
|Quintessential London - old, new, and the distinctive red bus|
I also tested the Beets Blu pager tag. Suggested uses for the tag include keys, bags, and anything else you might lose or need to track down. This device does require you to install a dedicated app on your phone, and you then activate the tag through your phone. A beep from the tag is intended to guide you to your items. It seemed to work reasonably well, and I liked that the sound produced was high pitched and thus not too distracting. Unfortunately, though, it was so high pitched that Mr Bite couldn't hear it, which may undermine its use for people with hearing that doesn't extend all the way up the scale! It's not something I can see us using, but for people who tend to lose their belongings, it could definitely cut down on searching time.
I was provided with a complementary Beets Blu heart rate monitor and pager tag for reviewing purposes. I did not receive other compensation and all opinions are my own.