Healbe GoBe 2 Review - A first look at this fitness tracker, calorie counter & smartband watch.
This is a 100% honest, 100% authentic Healbe GoBe2 review. Dadtography editor Daniel was provided complimentary product to facilitate this review. Dadtography was not compensated in any way for this post. Some links below may be affiliate links (af), meaning, at no additional cost to you, I may earn a small commission if you click my link and purchase a GoBe 2.
All images are unedited Dadtography originals. Please don't use our photos without permission.
Fitness trackers and "smartwatches" have dramatically grown in popularity over the past few years. I've personally owned at least four devices myself over the past three years or so. The tech has grown since the devices were first introduced, and I think the GoBe 2 demonstrates some of that growth - IF the metrics are reliable.
I am a realist when it comes to fitness devices. I know fitness and activity is only one part of your overall health and that your diet, calorie intake, hydration level and sleep duration and quality matter a lot in your overall health "calculation". I agreed to test out the GoBe 2 tracker and this review represents my 100% honest feedback after one week of use.
I will continue my use and testing of the GoBe 2 device, especially as it compares to my experience with my Fitbit Ionic. I will update this blog post as I continue using the GoBe 2.
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The only complete smart-life band. How does this fitness tracker stack up on a first impression review after one week of use? To learn more about the product, visit the official company website product page (af).
The company behind the GoBe 2
11 Things I Learned About the Healbe Corporation
The geek in me can't just start using a new piece of tech or a new gadget. Oh no, that would be too easy. Instead, I like to learn more about the tech behind the device, as well as the company producing it as well. Here are eleven things I learned about the tech and about Healbe that I didn't know before trying the GoBe 2.
What is the Healbe GoBe2?
And why have I never heard of this "smart-life" band before?
The Healbe GoBe 2 (af) is the second iteration of the fitness tracking device made by the Healbe Corporation.
As mentioned, the original GoBe burst onto the scene via an Indiegogo funding launch that grabbed over $1M in backers. The initial launch wasn't without controversy, though. Which I think could be expected, given the device's purported features (scroll down for more).
Let's just say for now that the features of this device aren't like any other fitness tracker on the market that I've seen.
The GoBe 2 is the result of a number of upgrades, enhancements and even a partnership with UC Davis improving upon the original device.
Is the GoBe 2 perfect? Nope.
Is the GoBe 2 a scam? I honestly don't think so.
I think the GoBe 2 is an honest attempt and a step toward a more advanced device to track more than just steps and heart rate. I'm hopeful that, as the tech improves, the device will continue to build trust and demonstrate the potential of this "IOT" device.
What is my first impression of the product and packaging?
Because the unboxing of a new device means something.
The GoBe 2 has a seriously great first impression when it comes to the product presentation and packaging.
Clearly, Healbe has taken some lessons from other consumer device manufacturers that get this very right (thinking Apple here). They seem to know that how the product is presented matters, maybe more than it should, to the consumer.
The GoBe 2 comes in product packaging that does a good job of showcasing the device, summarizing the value proposition and really just makes you want to open the package and see what it's all about.
What are the key features of the Healbe GoBe2?
Let's break down what all this thing does, shall we?
According to the product website and packaging, here's all the GoBe 2 does:
- (Automatic) Calorie Intake - Healbe’s patented FLOW Technology™ automatically measures the number of calories your body consumes. It excluding the need for manual logging, error-prone guesswork, or the reading of Nutrition Facts labels. Healbe GoBe 2 counts calories for you – helping you know how much energy you get out of food you eat.
- Monitor Emotional States (ie: stress) - GoBe 2 monitors physiological signals in real time. It incorporates a ‘Galvanic Skin Response Sensor’ which is used to detect changes in your skin, like sweat or perspiration. It can indicate when you feel stress, anxiety or detect emotions like happiness, anger or even mental stress that comes from a heavy workload. GoBe 2 enables you to better understand your emotional state, and can help you manage your stress and anxiety, leading to a more mindfully, healthy lifestyle.
- Monitor Water Balance (ie: hydration) - GoBe 2 is the only wellness band that can automatically track your water consumption and can remind you to drink more if you’re running low. Drinking enough water is essential to a well-balanced, mind & body.
- Monitor Energy Balance (ie: calorie intake vs burn) - Get automatic energy balance tracking! GoBe 2 calculates the number of calories you consume in comparison to the number of calories you burn. See your data in the Healbe GoBe App and on display in real time. GoBe 2 lets you easily see if you’re consuming more calories than you burn, so you can stay on top of your weight loss goals. Sticking to a negative balance for a longer time-period, will help to lose weight.
- Burned Calories
- Steps & Distance
- Sleep Quality
- Heart Rate
- Stress Level
Okay, but does the GoBe 2 actually work?
The short answer here, after one week of testing, appears to be "mostly". I think it does what it says it can do, with some margin of error.
On the Heart Rate Monitor Feature
The heart rate monitor appears to be pretty good (in comparing it to my Fitbit Ionic). I've been wearing both devices simultaneously - one on each arm.
Not only are the heart rate readings comparable between devices, manual testing of my heart rate periodically appears to confirm the readings are accurate within a few percentage points of variance.
The Big One - Automatic Calorie Tracker Feature
The big question about accuracy seems to relate to the automatic calorie tracker feature.
Now, I'm no scientist nor nutritionist, but I am a pretty observant person and consider myself to be someone that has an attention to detail. It is true, that the calorie tracker doesn't seem to register calorie intake when you place food in our mouth.
But honestly, I wouldn't expect calorie readings to be real-time based on the method the device uses to measure intake. From the Healbe website:
- After you eat, your body starts converting food into glucose.
- Insulin triggers your cells to absorb glucose and release water.
- The GoBe 2 measures these changes by sending high and low frequency signals through your tissue to determine the fluid volume of your cells.
To use a personal and real-life example, I just ate my breakfast (it's about 10 am). I will start to see this calorie intake register on my GoBe 2 app over the course of the next few hours, as the food digests.
On the Sleep Tracker Feature
Although the sleep tracker feature on the Healbe App doesn't appear to be as visually detailed as what I'm accustomed to in my Fitbit app, I do think it seems like it's tracking my sleep accurately.
I've also really grown to like the quality Smart Alarm feature. This feature allows you to set a threshold of sleep quality (as a percentage). When you reach that threshold, GoBe 2 will wake you up. It also appears to try to wake you up during a REM sleep cycle, which is reportedly the best time to wake up to feel refreshed.
I will continue my testing and observations.
I'll be honest, I'm skeptical as well. The tech is new and unproven, and why would this device get it right when it's been so challenging for others to do so in the past?
My answer is: why not this device?
I don't think the tracker readings are 100% accurate, but I wouldn't expect them to be, either. I expect them to be a guide for me to help make decisions.
How is the GoBe 2 different than the first version?
Final thoughts after one week of use with the GoBe2.
Overall, I like the GoBe 2 so far. I know it's not perfect, and I don't expect it (or any fitness tracker) to be. I'm going to use it more, especially related to activity and exercise. I want to see how well it tracks my steps and activity to get a better feel for the accuracy of the calorie burn feature.
I also want to wear it a bit longer before passing final judgment on how comfortable I think it is. So far, it hasn't been bad - it's a bit bulky, but I'm accustomed to wearing larger watches.
I'm going to do a lot more comparison tests between the GoBe 2 and my Fitbit Ionic to see how the two compare in status both track.
Last but not least, I'm going to keep using the mobile app to get a little more experience, and data. So far, the app is intuitive, but it's not nearly as visual as I'm used to in other fitness tracking apps.