Arvin Fitness Tracker Heart Rate Watch SW36BY+AD+UK-1

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 I have been looking for a new budget fitness tracker for some time and increasingly it seems they all have a very similar functionality, often even using the same generic app, but vary only in price and presentation. This new watch from Arvin uses a new form factor and is the first one I have used with the traditional round watch shape.

I currently use a Fitbit Charge 2 but increasingly this is being matched in specifications by these far cheaper Chinese rivals. The quality of the imported trackers is going up all the time but are the cheap clones actually any good?

In the simple but rather tasteful and upmarket product box there is the wrist band itself, a USB charging cable and a fan fold type User Guide which is small and rather hard to read. I include a scan of the User Guide on the end of my unboxing video.

Construction quality seems fine for the price but without the premium feel of the high end rivals and seems less robust and rather more plasticky in comparison. That said, the band and charger feel perfectly OK but not high end. The watch is slim and quite stylish and the rather short USB charging cable seems well made. T%he strap seems robust and unlikely to come loose.

Priced at just £36.89 this unit mirrors most if not all of the costly rival’s functions as well as a few new ones but unlike most of the other rivals does not resemble it in any way. It supports a Heart Rate Monitor, Blood Pressure monitor, Clock, Pedometer, distance travelled, Calories used, Sleep Monitor, SMS monitor, Sedentary alert, Call Alert, Lost Phone finder. As well as the normal phone call and SMS alerts it also displays messages from Facebook,Twitter, WhatsApp and other applications on the connected phone. It also can be used to remote control your phone camera and can be used to find a mislaid phone by causing it to make an audible alert over Bluetooth. All this is done through the latest low energy Bluetooth 4 connection and allows a claimed 3 to 7 days of use between one hour charges charge use to be not unrealistic. It has a bright and clear 0.895″ OLED touch screen. The band is rated as being IP67 waterproof, which means it is safe against short term immersion in water but not suitable for swimming.

It works in close conjunction with an iOS or Android app. The H Band 2.0 app works OK but does need to be tidied up a bit as it is a bit buggy and at times unfinished. It has a distinctly Chinese feel to the appearance and layout. Although it cannot be compared to a sophisticated eco system like that offered by Fitbit nevertheless it does work for all the key features. After opening the optional cloud account you are prompted to enter your personal data into the app and then connect the phone and tracker together using Bluetooth. this worked well for me and the link seems fast and stable with my Nexus 6P phone. It then connects seamlessly to the tracker and continually updates the steps taken, distance travelled etc. When running or walking it can display you location in real time or for later study on a map within the app. If you registered an account when installing the app your tracking data can be backed up to the cloud.

Like with the Fitbit Charge 2 which I currently use the Heart Rate Monitor here is OK and a gives a decent indication of resting and active heart rates but cannot be considered accurate when compared to a chest strap HRM of the type used by serious athletes. The Fitbit updates the Heartrate monitor every five minutes but I am not sure what the rate is on this one– enough to give a decent estimation of your average and resting heart rates but not for sports training. The same has to be said of the BP monitoring feature which again is unclear about how frequently it updates.

This tracker feels and looks a bit cheaper than some of the high end rivals but the round form factor makes it look much like a conventional watch or smart watch rather than a sports tracker. If you are looking for a simple but well specified sports and fitness tracker and don’t want to pay for a premium name then this new wrist mounted tracker from Arvin might be the one for you.

The Good
Great price
Attractive design
OLED Touch screen
Vibration alerts
Good build quality
Phone and SMS alerts
Social Media alerts
Heart Rate Monitor
Blood Pressure Monitor
IP67 Waterproof

The Bad
Not part of larger eco system
Basic level app
Android App lacks design flare
Lack of dedicated multiple sports activity support

More info and purchase