Two weeks ago I was sent the Polar M600 GPS Watch, the newest Smart watch/Activity tracker/GPS watch from Polar to review. To say that I instantly fell in love with it is putting it mildly. I have tried many other fitness trackers, heart rate monitors and GPS watches before but have found that all of them did one thing well, but was missing the other pieces of the puzzle that would make it my go to all-in-one device.
I must confess, I’m a picky consumer.
I’m a runner, a triathlete, and a mom trying to maintain my weight and live the healthiest life possible.
My preferred smart watch not only needs to be able to connect to my device, but it also needs to track ALL of my activities at ALL times. It needs to be part smart watch, GPS watch, heart rate monitor, activity tracker, sleep tracker, calorie counter etc. It also needs to be waterproof for swimming, cycling and life in general.
Oh and it needs to look cute with my work clothes too.
So was Polar able to meet my shopping list of needs? Yes, yes, yes, and yes! It’s almost like they actually took the time to talk to the people who use activity trackers and GPS watches to find out what they REALLY want.
- Integrated GPS to track speed, distance and route
- 24/7 activity and sleep tracking monitoring steps, distance, sleep time, quality and calories burned
- Wrist-based heart rate technology
- Customizable sport-specific profiles giving you guidance and specific data to train effectively
- Connects with Polar Flow app for detailed information about each training session, as well as sleep and activity data
- Waterproof, the M600 is suitable for swimming up to 10 meters
- Exclusive smart coaching features
- Operating system: Android Wear™ with 4GB memory internal storage + 512MB RAM
- Battery life: 2 days/ 8 hours of training (with Android)/ 1 day, 8 hours of training (with iPhone)
- 6 LED Optical heart rate sensors, accelerometer, ambient light sensor, gyroscope, vibration motor, microphone
- Bluetooth 4.2 Wi-Fi connectivity
- Receive text, email, calendar and phone alerts
So how did the watch live up to my wear testing?
Setting it up was a breeze… sort of. I followed the setup instructions on the Polar website which includes downloading the Android Wear app to my phone, entered in my stats on the watch and I was out and running 20 min later. Admittedly it took me 5 min to clue in to the fact that detailed set up instructions were on Polar’s website. There’s a small info sheet in the box and my husband had a good laugh watching my confused face as I kept shaking and looking into the box for more instructions.
The Polar M600 GPS Watch connected to GPS very quickly compared to other watches I’ve tested – it even was able to connect to GPS from within my house! Being able to connect to GPS is a MUST for a GPS watch in my eyes, but I don’t have much patience for the connecting part. I usually stand and do some dynamic stretching (leg swings) while waiting for the connection and once it connects I want to take off on my run. Being able to connect to GPS in the house while I’m still lacing up my shoes is a bonus! As a mom with a family every minute spent waiting for my watch to connect is another minute lost from my run. Thankfully the Polar M600 connects fast so that I don’t lose any precious running time.
During a run it displays everything I need and more. Current pace, average pace, distance, total time, heart rate, heart rate zone etc. It was all there at a glance, and anything else I wanted to see was a SWIPE away. I liked that accidentally pausing, stopping or deleting my workout was impossible unlike other devices I’ve tried. Ending a run required me to SWIPE and PAUSE then HOLD for 3 seconds which means I don’t lose my workout to cyberspace.
And yes, after my run I was able to share my run details right from the Polar flow app, because you know, if I don’t share it then it didn’t happen, right?
This is where this watch goes from being just a GPS watch to a lean, mean training machine! The Polar Flow website works seamlessly with the Polar M600. On the Polar Flow website you can set up either a FREE pre-made heart rate based training plan or enter your own training plan. From the Polar Flow app I was able to sync my plan with my google calendar so now my iphone AND the Polar M600 notify me when it’s time to run, sharing all the details of today’s running plan.
As an activity tracker the Polar M600 ROCKS! I wore it around for a few days to track my movement while also wearing my FitBit Blaze. The number of steps and calories burned that the two devices recorded was nearly identical. It even gave me a “gentle” reminder to get off my butt whenever I was inactive for too long.
I mentioned earlier that to setup the watch I needed to download and install the Android Wear app on my phone. This is how the smart notifications happen. My calendar syncs to the Polar M600 and I can view my agenda for the day. Text notifications, emails, WEATHER and more are all synced! I was even able to delete junk emails right from the watch. Notifications come through as a gentle buzz and a small “card” on the watch fast. Swiping up reveals the full notification, and swiping right dismisses them. When synced with an Android powered phone there’s even more the watch can do, like store music etc. Although I have both a Samsung S5 and an iPhone, I only tested the watch with my iPhone.
- Easy to use.
- Clear display.
- Tracks everything! Steps, GPS, heart rate, sleep etc
- Software updates to add features.
- Syncs with Polar Flow website, iphone app, android app and desktop software.
- Charges quickly.
- Connects to GPS quickly.
- Activity syncing has to be initiated by user – it doesn’t happen in the background like a Fit Bit.
- Battery only last for 1 day when synced with an iPhone, 2 days with an Android phone
- A bit pricey – retails for $399 (Canada) $329 (US)
All in all I LOVED the Polar M600 GPS Watch so much that I wore it everyday for my review period. It’s very unfortunate that I have to send it back now that my review period is complete. The Polar M600 is definitely going on my Christmas Wish List!
For more information on the new Polar M600 smartwatch, go here.
Have you ever tried heart rate training?
What must have features do you want out of a smart watch?
Disclosure: Although this post is sponsored, all opinions are my own.
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