Withings Steel HR review

A hybrid watch with heart

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Hybrid smartwatches are becoming commonplace for those who want a fitness tracker which doesn't look like a piece of tech, and Withings is one of the best at providing great trackers disguised as watches.

Some of the other hybrid options on the market are far more expensive, and while the Steel HR does have a higher price than most Fitbit products this is still a good option if you put design above everything else.

The fitness tracking features offered here are limited though and if you're looking for a device to get you up off the sofa, this may not be it.

Who is this for?

The Withings Steel HR isn't for every fitness fanatic out there. This is a device built for those who don't like the standard fitness tracker design and want something with a little more style, like a traditional watch.

But the fact that it looks like a normal watch will make you more inclined to wear it at all times and get a more accurate picture of your activity.

The design of the Steel HR is great, but it also offers OK battery life and the heart rate tracking tech is appreciated if you're regularly working out while wearing this device.

It's a shame Withings hasn't packed in other workout types into the Steel HR, but if your exercise routine is limited to walking, running and swimming you will get along well with this tracker.

Should you buy it?

If you're looking for a device that will encourage you to go on the odd jog or walk around more, the Withings Steel HR will be a great option for you.

The disguised design of the Steel HR is its highlight. You can wear this into a business meeting and no-one will be any the wiser that it's monitoring your heart rate and taking a note of your steps to the watercooler.

If you need something for more complex fitness workouts such as biking or home cardio routines, we'd recommend taking a look at our full best fitness tracker list for another option with more features built in.

First reviewed: February 2017

Competition

Not ready to buy the Withings Steel HR? Be sure to check out some of the rest of the competition out there, such as these tracking options.

Withings Activité Pop

After a fitness tracker that looks like a watch but doesn’t cost as much as the Steel HR? The Activité Pop from a couple of years ago – another device made by Withings – may be a good choice for you to grab instead of this version.

It’s a touch cheaper than the Steel HR at $129.95 (£99.99, about AU$160) and has a longer lasting battery, but won’t come with the heart rate tracking tech you may need to have on your new wearable. It’s arguably not as attractive as the Steel HR either.

Fitbit Charge 2

Want the best fitness tracker in the world right now? This option from Fitbit - the Charge 2 - is the greatest combination of fitness features and a lower price than most other options.

It's lower priced than the Withings Steel HR, but it doesn’t look anywhere near as classy, so you may not want this if you don’t want a tracker that looks a little plasticky.

That said, it comes with a lot of great fitness features you won’t get on the Withings Steel HR, so it may be worth your while taking a look at our review before you make your choice.