Even if July begins anything but summer in much of Germany, we can certainly look forward to one sunny day or another. And then the personal fitness program becomes very popular with many people again. And a smart watch on your wrist can help you not only record your training performance, but also gradually improve it.
Polar Unite: smartwatch for little money
Are you interested in a branded smartwatch but don’t want to spend a small fortune? Then maybe the latest Polar product is the one for you. Because with the Polar Unite, the Finnish manufacturer has conjured a fitness wristwatch that is water resistant to 30 meters and costs just under 150 euros.
The operation is largely done via the watch’s IPS-TFT touchscreen. Brightness automatically adapts to ambient light, resolution is 240 x 204 pixels. At the bottom left you will find a stainless steel button integrated into the housing, with which you can, for example, start and end the recording of your running units.
An optical heart rate monitor is built into the back of the 32 gram fitness tracker. Too bad: Polar Unite doesn’t have its own GPS receiver. If you want to record your walks, you need to connect the smartwatch to your mobile phone via Bluetooth.
Additional equipment includes a sleep tracker, breathing exercises if the stress level is too high, and a step counter. On the other hand, you have to give up, for example, measuring vertical meters and measuring a target pace for a certain distance. Nor is manual measurement of laps or independent speed possible with Polar Unite. It focuses on the most important functions of a sports watch at an affordable price.
The watch case is generally black. However, you have the option of choosing between a black, white, red or blue bracelet. According to the manufacturer, the battery life in clock mode is up to four days. Up to 50 hours in training mode are possible, including GPS and pulse measurement via smartphone.
Rollme S06 – entry level smartwatch
The new Rollme S06 entry-level smartwatch is even more affordable. In the design of the Apple Watch, it costs the equivalent of only 26 euros and is available in pink, turquoise, black or blue with a plastic casing.
Weighing just under 27 grams, you can access a 1.3-inch (240 x 240 pixel) TFT screen and an optical heart rate sensor. You can also use a pedometer and, according to the manufacturer, it is even possible to measure the oxygen content in your blood. Something unusual for watches in this price range.
Not integrated: own GPS receiver. You can’t expect that at a price of less than 30 euros. It is emphasized that you can also measure your body temperature with the watch. However, it is unclear how exactly these values are measured on the wrist.
Mobvoi TicWatch C2 +
The newest addition from Mobvoi is of a much higher quality: the TicWatch C2 +. Based on Google’s WearOS, this smartwatch with a 1.3-inch AMOLED screen (360 x 360 pixels) costs the equivalent of just under € 190 and is available in rose gold, black and silver.
The TicWatch C2 + comes in a surprisingly simple design with a metal casing. However, with 1 GB of RAM and 4 GB of storage space, as well as integrated GPS and NFC chip for mobile payments via Google Pay, it offers quite a bit of functionality. Of course, you don’t have to do without a rear-mounted optical heart rate monitor.
Unfortunately, only Snapdragon Wear 2100, a Qualcomm processor that was introduced in early 2016, is installed. This also means that only Bluetooth 4.1 can be supported. According to the manufacturer, the battery life is up to two days. Thanks to the IP68 certification, the watch is also protected against a brief immersion in water.
By the way: compared to the TicWatch C2, available for 150 euros on Amazon, only one thing has really changed with the TicWatch C2 +: more RAM. And 1GB instead of 512MB. Also, according to Mobvoi, you can access more watch faces. We are talking about more than 1,000 pieces.
Snapdragon Wear 4100 and 4100+: Qualcomm’s new smartwatch processor
Meanwhile, Qualcomm has news with a view to two new chips that will be integrated into the smartwatches of the future. Qualcomm Snapdragon Wear 4100 and Snapdragon Wear 4100+ should not only provide noticeably higher performance than their predecessor, they should also put less stress on a smartwatch battery. Because instead of using the 28nm process, the new Smartwatch CPUs are produced using the more efficient 12nm process. Additionally, the system on chip (SoC) now supports Bluetooth 5.
The centerpiece is four Cortex-A53 cores that clock up to 1.7 GHz on top. For comparison: in the Snapdragon Wear 3100, four Cortex-A7 cores did their job, with up to 1.3 GHz. An Adreno A505 with 750 MHz is installed instead of an Adreno A304 with 400 MHz as the graphics unit in the Snapdragon Wear family 4100.
Part of the new SoC in the Plus version is also a coprocessor to which functions such as pulse measurement or sleep tracking can be outsourced. Also, only Snapdragon Wear 4100+ offers the option to use an always-on display on a smartwatch.
Also important: Qualcomm’s new smartwatch chip will ensure that watch screens are more colorful. Because instead of 16 colors on the Snapdragon Wear 3100, the Snapdragon Wear 4100 can process 64,000 colors and display them on the screen. Now an uninterrupted pulse measurement is also possible.
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