Amazon Halo View: Low Price, Big Gains
PC Magazine|January 2022
A budget-friendly Fitbit alternative
ANGELA MOSCARITOLO

Amazon Halo View $79.99

If you need some motivation to get active, but you don’t want to spend big bucks on a fitness tracker you’re not sure you’ll stick with, Amazon’s Halo View might be just what you’re looking for. The View can measure your activity, blood oxygen saturation (SpO2), heart rate, sleep, and skin temperature, while its companion app offers tons of features to help you improve your results. And it’s better than its predecessor, the Halo Band, in almost every way: It has a display, costs less, and comes with a free year of premium Halo Membership (up from six months). That said, the Halo View isn’t as accurate as the Fitbit Inspire 2 ($99), and its companion workout-streaming service falls short of Apple Fitness+. Still, if you’re on a tight budget or just starting on a path toward better health, the Halo View is a terrific value.

HALO VIEW VS. HALO BAND (AND FITBIT INSPIRE 2)

Following the Halo Band’s release last summer, Amazon heard the same feedback from many users (myself included): They wanted a screen. The Halo View features a small color AMOLED touch display on which you can view metrics including your heart rate, sleep score, SpO2 level, and workout stats without turning to the companion app on your phone. Of course, you can also use the screen for checking the time, like a watch.

Meanwhile, the original Halo Band remains on sale for $99.99 and still comes with a six-month trial Halo Membership, as opposed to the twelve months you get with the View. You might wonder why the screenless version costs more. The difference is the case material: The Band uses stainless steel, while the View uses plastic. Amazon says the two wearables offer different experiences, depending on your preferences. The original is meant to be unobtrusive, so it won’t distract you during the day or at night. But its screenless design means you have to open its companion app whenever you want to view your metrics.

Amazon Halo View

PROS Affordable. Color touch screen. Includes one year of Halo Membership. Long battery life. Automatic workout tracking. Measures SpO2.

CONS Inconsistent heart rate readings in testing.No GPS functionality. Band can accidentally separate from tracker.

BOTTOM LINE For well under $100, Amazon’s Halo View health tracker is an excellent tool to help kick start your fitness journey.

At $79.99, the Halo View looks a lot like the Fibit Inspire 2 but costs $20 less. Just keep in mind that unlike the Inspire 2, the Halo View requires a Halo Membership to use most of its features, including body-composition analysis, live tone-of-voice analysis, and movement health metrics.

The Inspire 2 costs more upfront and has a black-and-white display, but it offers more functionality without a membership, including detailed activity, exercise, and sleep metrics. It also comes with a one-year Fitbit Premium subscription, which gives you access to audio and video workouts from brands such as barre3 , Gaiam’s Yoga Studio, and obé, as well as meditations from third parties such as Aura, Breethe, and Ten Percent Happier.

SMALLER AND LIGHTER

Measuring 1.84 by 0.75 by 0.47 inches (LWH), the Halo View’s case is slightly narrower and taller than the original model’s (1.64 by 0.84 by 0.41 inches). The switch to a plastic case means that it’s also lighter, at 0.40 versus 0.63 ounces. That said, I barely notice either model on my wrist. Regardless of band color, the Halo View’s plastic case comes only in black. The Halo Band’s stainless steel case, by comparison, comes in black, rose gold, or silver.

The Halo View comes with a rubbery TPU Sport Band in your choice of black, green, or lavender. You can choose between small/medium (for wrists 5.1 to 7.7 inches in circumference) or medium/large (for wrists 6.3 to 8.9 inches). Aesthetically, I prefer the fabric band you get in the box with the original Halo, though the View’s rubbery band is easily washable and better for showers or sweaty workouts. Like the Band, the Halo View is water resistant to 164 feet, which means you can safely wear it to swim and in the shower.

To change up the look of your Halo View, Amazon offers fabric, leather, and metal accessory bands for $29.99 apiece. The company also offers the Sport Band in 15 colors for $14.99 each.

Twice while I was testing the View, the band accidentally separated from the tracker. Luckily, this happened inside my house, and I noticed it right away. If this had happened when I was out and about, I might not have noticed and would have lost both the band and the tracker.

Amazon says the Halo View will last up to a week on a charge, as does the Band. Your results will vary based on your use. In testing, the View lasted nearly six full days before its battery dipped below 10%. The Inspire 2 lasts even longer, up to 10 days on a charge.

One major difference between the View and the Band is that the Band features two onboard microphones for collecting voice data throughout the day for the Tone analysis feature, which reports on your voice’s tone throughout the day. Amazon removed the microphones from the View to save battery life for the display (the Halo Band’s battery life drops to about two days with Tone). Halo View users can still take advantage of the live Tone feature in its companion app, which might prove useful if you’re rehearsing for a presentation or speech, but it won’t give you a summary report of your voice’s tone at the end of each day. If you’re interested in using the Tone feature on a regular basis, the Halo Band is a better bet for you.

SETTING UP AND NAVIGATING THE HALO VIEW

The Halo View requires an active Amazon account, a compatible mobile device running at least Android 8 or iOS 13, and the Halo mobile app. To set it up, just plug the included USB-A charging cord into your computer or another power source, and clip the other end to the Halo View, making sure to align the metal charging points. You don’t get a power adapter in the box.

Next, enable Bluetooth on your smartphone, download the Amazon Halo app (available for Android and iOS), sign into your Amazon account, and follow the on-screen instructions to finish the setup process. When you open the app, it asks for your name, birthday, height, weight, and gender. Amazon says it only offers female and male gender options right now because the Halo’s bodymeasurement models are currently based on sex assigned at birth. If you choose a gender different from the one assigned to you at birth, some of your measurements or results might be inaccurate, the company says, adding, “As more reliable data becomes available, we’ll add more options.”

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