The Soleus Thrive activity tracker + Heart Rate Monitor (HRM) was one of the first activity trackers in Singapore with an optic heart rate monitor – that is based on the pulse from your wrist.
This means that in addition to measuring steps taken daily, it also tracks your heart rate throughout the day without the addition of a bulky chest strap. As well, the Soleus Thrive also measures your calories burned and sleep patterns.I was recently given the chance to review the Soleus Thrive tracker and here are some of my comments.
The Soleus Thrive comes in two colours – black and pink. The unit that I received was a black colour one. While the physical appearance may appear to be slightly bulky compared to the Soleus Rise tracker which I have previously been using, perhaps this increase in size is necessary, due to the additional heart-rate feature. And black is a colour that can pair easily with any clothing colours, so this makes it quite easy to match with your wardrobe.
Syncing the tracker to the Soleus App
It’s quite simple to use the Soleus Thrive. All you need to do is to download the Soleus App from the Apple App Store for Apple devices or the Google Play store for Android devices and connect the Thrive via Bluetooth. It does not take that long to detect the activity tracker. Once this has been done, you are then good to go.
What I particularly like about this tracker is that you can choose on the app, where you will be primarily wearing the tracker on your body i.e. left arm, right arm or waist. This is helpful because the readings will then adjust themselves accordingly.
For example, the right arm may be most prone to sudden movements that a typical tracker may not count into the total daily steps tally – especially for right-handed people. But with this new feature, this is not likely to happen though, as this factor will be taken into account.
Using the tracker
As you move, the tracker will quietly count your total steps tally in the background and with the press of a button, you can see these figures on the screen. This is definitely fuss-free as you can go about your daily activities without realising that the tracker is on your wrist.
Besides the number of steps taken, you can also find out what is the total distance that you are walking every day as well as your total calories burned. If you feel that the distance figures may not be accurate, you can adjust these by calibrating your stride length via the Soleus app and using the figures as a rough gauge.
That said, you can also set a goal for your daily steps and calories and upon completion of this target, the Thrive tracker will cheer you on. This gets displayed with the words ‘Congrats’ rolling across the screen and the Thrive will vibrate at the same time. For those who are just starting out in an exercise routine, I think that this can be very motivating.
The heart rate monitor
This is the new feature built in the Soleus range of activity trackers. There is a green Organic Light Emitting Diode (OLED) that enables the device to have clear heart-rate readings with a wide viewing angle and fast response times for sports. At the same time, this technology also offers heart-rate monitoring with an optic pulse sensor where it detects and tracks your heart rate. So you don’t need a cumbersome chest strap.
But I find that the heart-rate readings does not always get detected, especially when I am trying to look via the Thrive tracker itself. However, when I check my heart rate via the Soleus app, this appears to work better in terms of detecting a heart rate. I think that the HRM is a good feature that will enable you to keep note of your daily heart rate and thus overall fitness levels.
This can be set to either Manual or Auto mode.
For those who have standard sleeping hours, Auto mode is easier, but if your hours are irregular, you may prefer the Manual mode – just remember to start and stop the Sleep Mode when you sleep and when you wake up – otherwise you will fail to get a reading.
But that said, I think the Sleep Mode is quite useful – because it measures not only your hours of sleep but also the quality of sleep that you are getting. So you will know if you have had a very restful night or if you have been tossing and turning a lot. If you have been feeling lethargic and exhausted during the daytime, this feature can possibly reveal that your nights have not been very restful, despite getting perhaps seven to eight hours of rest.
The Soleus Thrive also keeps track of your workouts – you simply start the ‘Workout’ mode on the activity tracker before you begin, for example, a run or a cycling session. Then once you are done, you stop the ‘Workout’ mode and save the recording.
Some of the features of the Soleus Thrive is that it can use vibrations to alert you to phone calls or text messages – this is very useful if your smartphone happens to be stuck inside your bag. At the same time, it also vibrates based on time i.e. you can set it to vibrate every hour so that you can keep track of the time.
As well, if you’ve been stationary, the device will vibrate and tell you to move after a specified amount of time of your choosing, for example, one hour. As we are supposed to stay active to stretch our legs regularly after being seated for an extended period of time, this is a good feature to remind you to do so.
These vibrations are definitely quite effective – and with the Soleus Thrive on your wrist, you will almost certainly be able to pick it up even though you may be very engrossed in the task at hand.
The battery life for the activity tracker lasts approximately one week.
As a whole, the Soleus Thrive is quite useful in keeping track of one’s fitness goals and helping one to stay motivated at the same time.
The Soleus Thrive can be bought from TANGS VivoCity, OG Orchard Point and selected sports and watch retailers. It is priced at USD129.00 (SGD181.00).