Weloop Hey 3S GPS Fitness Watch review
The Weloop Hey 3S is a step tracker, heart rate monitor, sleep tracker, and somewhat smart wrist notification device that ties in with your phone. It’s waterproof and also has the ability to kick on GPS outdoors to help map out your journey (and subsequently burn through the battery at an increased rate).
I’ve been wearing it for about three weeks now, here are my current impressions. These may be updated when either the software updates or I figure something out that changes the game.
Weloop Hey 3S App/software
The Weloop Hey 3S software is a notable effort in that it attempts to recreate what several other businesses have already done well. It nearly succeeds in its current state at being everything you need. Nearly.
Lack of integration with Google Fit, Apple Health, Runtastic, MyFitnessPal, or a web page I can export my info from, leads it to feeling like just another app that’s designed differently and doesn’t quite do everything I need it to. I’ve been informed that third party health tracker integration is on the horizon, but until it’s out I’ll hesitate to sing its praises.
It does an OK job of doing what it does when it has the correct data. The persistent notification service in Android annoys me however (I know you can hide it.)
If you get bored with the watch face you can change it in their app face store. I didn’t see any paywalls, so there’re about 12 good ones to choose from as of this writing. Lots of chicken faces for some reason.
Notifications for texts, tweets, Whatsapp, and several others you can define come in to the watch where you get to see maybe the first 96 characters of the message. I’m uncertain if there’s a way to scroll through the messages, they’re useful for telling me who’s messaging me but not particularly great for getting the entire message to me. I may be doing something wrong.
Lack of ability to respond with predefined sentences like “running, text in a bit” or “I’ve got a bowl of hot cheese and nachos, for the love of god deliver some guacamole” make the notifications less useful as I’ve got to pull the phone out to respond “ok”. Potentially correctable with a software update.
Weloop Hey 3S hardware
You’re looking at an IP 68 waterproof watch. It works underwater as a display, however it needs to be surfaced to recognize pressing on the screen. I put it at the bottom of a tub for about half an hour. No issues.
It’s got a 270mAh battery which I’ve charged fully once in the three weeks I’ve used it and two short charges on a car trip. The battery appears to want to last about a couple of weeks at the long end unless you kick on the GPS.
Fully going to admit I haven’t tested this hard enough yet with GPS because it’s been 11 degrees fahrenheit (-11 celsius) and I’m not that dedicated to a watch review. Sorry guys, nice watch, when it’s nicer outside I’ll give it a sporting chance.
Watch bands can be popped on and off with relative ease, but even having a 4yo yanking on your watch the thing doesn’t seem to budge.
Heart rate is determined by a greenish light, and an accelerometer is there to count your steps and figure out your sleep.
Charging is done through a magnetic cradle and it’s pretty quick. I’ve got my cradle in my car and have used it twice to power through a week of moderate use during the drive to work.
Overall as a hardware product it’s pretty decent.
Where it failed, or how I learned to love the bomb
Day two I checked the watch and my heart rate was anywhere between 47 and 158. This higher number concerned me because no, I’d picked up a baby and maybe got my heart rate up to 70 but there was no way it got over 100. I checked against Samsung Health, a pulse oximeter, and the Weloop and all claimed I was within the same general area.
I sent my PR rep for the Weloop Hey 3S a note, they contacted the manufacturer, and the manufacturer wanted to know how I was wearing the watch. I changed positions and tightened the strap a bit and since then no real issues other than on my wrist it seems to need to be tighter than others in order for the readings to be accurate.
I’m not convinced the sleep detection works particularly well either but I haven’t found a product I believe does work properly.
Where it may have failed
Here’s something I will be testing on a non-raining non-freezing day – the step count doesn’t feel right. I noticed this at about week one that the steps registered by the Weloop Hey 3S and things such as my Google Fit or Samsung Health were off significantly. Weloop should be higher consistently as it’s on my body at all times and I do things like walk around my office building without my phone on me,
I decided to to some testing and broke out the Zoom HRV monitor (which I wore on my ankle and got many ankle bracelet/what the hell happened in Vegas jokes about,) Google Fit, and Samsung Health. My belief was that by comparing these I would probably get whether this is tracking steps properly.
The format below is date, S=Samsung Health, F=Google Fit, Z=Zoom HRV, W=Weloop Hey 3S (percentage it was off based on averaging the other three).
Fit additionally uses the Zoom HRV data along with phone, Samsung Health just uses phone accelerometer data.
01-31-2018 S=5121, F=?, Z=4678, W=3304 (44% off)
02-09-2018 S=2395, F=2462, Z=2462, W=2072 (14% off)
02-14-2018 S=872, F=923, Z=923, W=814 (11% off)
There are plenty more tests, these were the ones I thought to screenshot, I have data for the others, it’s comparable. My bet is F & Z are probably always going to be the same because Fit and Zoom are tied when Zoom is available, S is off of my phone’s accelerometer only, and W has been attached to my wrist other than car charging in its magnetic base.
I counted for this last one, should be 930-50 steps recorded. Let’s say 930. This means the Weloop didn’t register 116 steps or 12.5% if I did the math right. The outlayer there is the entry from the 31st. I’m not really sure where that number came from but it’s aberrant. The Weloop Hey 3S feels like it’s undercounting by 10% or more to me, the 44% was a fluke.
Should be noted this is in simple pedometer mode. I need to do some more testing where I can hit 1000 steps with the GPS on, without it, and not freeze to death or get rained on. I also have no real proof that the Samsung / Google Fit / Zoom HRV algorithms for counting steps aren’t being influenced incorrectly.
What needs to happen for Paul to not be annoyed
Software improvements, integration with third party health apps, notification that it’s not reading your heart rate normally, maybe a firmware update to speed up GPS fix (took a while outside to get it, I think using the app and the phone’s barometer (or even GPS,) you could probably push-start the watch). Updates to messaging notifications. Documentation improvements.
Time needs to be available in 12 hour format. Sure, I know what 22:08 is, but a lot of people look at that and think “it’s a lemon past purple”.
Do I hate it?
No, I actually like it, and that’s not me just saying that so I can get 6% commission on a sale at Amazon, which I totally can. Battery life is very good for an always viewable display.
That said, buy it for what it is now, not what it has the potential to be. Potentially it’s great.