May 22, 2024


Sapiens Digital

Activity Trackers – Review 2020

Wyze is known for making highly rated yet affordable smart home
, so we were excited when the company jumped into the wearables market
with a fitness tracker. The Wyze Band tracks your heart rate, sleep, and steps,
and puts smart home controls on your wrist for just $24.99. It lets you remotely
control Wyze light bulbs, security cameras, and smart plugs, and it has Amazon
Alexa built in so you can control third-party smart home products as well. It doesn’t
match the fitness tracking prowess of the Fitbit Inspire HR or the Samsung
Galaxy Fit
, but it earns our Editors’ Choice for its wide range of features for
the price. 

Design and Specs 

The Wyze Band has an unassuming, all-black unisex design
with no physical buttons. It features a rectangular 0.95-inch AMOLED color
touch screen with a resolution of 240 by 120 pixels. It comes with two black
straps: a single-pin thermoplastic polyurethane band and a traditional silicone
watch-style band, both of which fit wrists 6.1 to 8.6 inches in circumference.
Wyze doesn’t currently offer the Band or its straps in any other colors. 

At its thickest point, the Band measures about half an inch. It
weighs 2.6 ounces, which I found comfortable to wear all day, but not to bed.
To be fair, though, I don’t even like to sleep with hairbands around my wrist.
If you’re OK wearing bracelets to bed, you should be fine with the Band.

As for hardware, it has a Cypress PSoC 6 dual-core processor,
288KB of internal RAM, 8MB of external RAM, 16MB of flash memory, and two
digital mics. 

In terms of battery life, Wyze says the Band can last 10 days on a single charge with normal use. After wearing it for a full 24 hours,
during which I tracked a run and extensively tested its features, the Band
still had 93 percent battery life, so it’s safe to say you won’t have to charge
it often. Even with the screen set to maximum brightness, the battery didn’t
drain quickly. 

The Band isn’t fully waterproof, but it has a 5ATM
water-resistance rating, meaning it can be submerged in up to 164 feet of water
for up to 10 minutes. Wyze says you can wear it when showering, but it
shouldn’t be exposed to soaps, shampoos, conditioners, lotions, or perfumes,
which can “negatively affect water seals and acoustic membranes” over time.
It’s kind of hard to avoid exposing the Band to soap when you wear it in the
shower and wash your hands approximately every two seconds due to the COVID-19
pandemic, but it fared fine in testing through multiple showers and countless
hand washes. 

You can also wear it while swimming, but not while diving or
participating in “intensive water sports” such as scuba diving or skiing. If it
comes into contact with chlorine or salt water, Wyze advises cleaning it with
fresh water and drying it with a lint-free cloth to avoid damage. The company
also says you should take it off before entering a sauna or steam room.

Setup and Navigation

To get started, you first need to charge the Band, download the
Wyze app (available for Android and iOS), and sign up for an account. A handy
quick start guide that comes in the box offers setup and activation

Pairing the Band with the Wyze app is a breeze. You click Add a
Product in the app, select the Wyze Band, and follow the instructions on the
screen. Once you get it paired via Bluetooth, you enter your birth year,
height, and weight in the app, and select which wrist you’re wearing the Band

From there, the app walks you through a brief guide on how to
navigate the watch. You can swipe up and down to access functions such as
activities, alarms, Alexa alerts, find your phone, heart rate, notifications,
run tracking, settings, shortcuts, and weather. When you land on the function
you want, you can swipe left and right for additional details. The watch
interface is simple and uncluttered. It’s intuitive to use and easy on the eyes,
with a black background, white text, and colorful graphics for each

An onscreen Home button at the bottom of the display lets you go
back to the previous function or the clock face. You can also hold down the Home button to wake up Alexa. (Note: To use the Alexa feature, you need to
first enable it in the Wyze app, which I’ll get to below.) 

The screen turns off quickly, which helps preserve battery life,
but turns back on when you lift your wrist or tap the screen. There are three
brightness settings. When set to maximum brightness, the display is vivid and

On the downside, the screen isn’t the most responsive. I sometimes
had to tap it several times or give my wrist a small shake to wake it up, and
swiping felt a bit laggy. But for $25, it’s hard to complain. 

Controlling Wyze Devices

One of the Band’s standout features is its ability to let you
control other Wyze devices. You can create up to five shortcuts that let you do
things like turn a Wyze Bulb on or off, pause Wyze Cam notifications, and
control a Wyze Plug, all from your wrist. 

I tested this with a Wyze Bulb, which I have installed in a living
room lamp. I created two shortcuts in the Wyze app—one
to turn the lamp on, and another to turn it off. When I pressed save, the app
synced these shortcuts to the Band, and they worked perfectly. With a couple
swipes and taps on the Band, I was able to turn my living room lamp on and


Since it has Alexa built in, the Band lets you control non-Wyze
devices with your voice. To connect the band to Alexa, you need to sign into
your Amazon account via the Wyze app, which you can do with just a few clicks
if you already have the Amazon app on your phone. When setting up Alexa, the
Wyze app informs you that the Band’s microphones only turn on when you press a
button to summon the virtual assistant, a nice privacy assurance. 

Once connected, you just press and hold the Band’s Home button for
two seconds to start talking to Alexa. In testing, the Alexa integration worked as promised. I have Alexa connected to an iLife A9 robot vacuum, so I can use the
virtual assistant to start cleaning jobs with my voice. Once I got Alexa
connected to the Band, I pressed the Home button and said, “Alexa,
turn on Zaco,” the A9’s nickname. I then simply had to tap the Band’s screen to
confirm I was talking about the A9, and the vacuum started up. 

Fitness Features

The Band automatically tracks your average heart rate, calories
burned, miles traveled, and step count, as well as how long you sleep. You can
also measure your heart rate at any time. 

It has an integrated run-tracking feature, but lacks support for
other types of workouts. When you click the Run app on the Band, it counts down
for you to start, then begins tracking your calories, distance, heart rate,
pace, and time. 

The default clock face shows your step count for the
day, and you can swipe to the Activity section to see your totals for the other
aforementioned metrics. 

The Activity section of the Wyze app offers more information,
including daily, weekly, and monthly totals for your calories, heart rate, run
history, sleep, and steps. In the app’s Sleep section, you can see a graph of
how much time you spent awake, in deep sleep, and in light sleep. The Run
History section shows a list of runs with your average pace, calories burned,
distance, and pace for each mile. 

Unfortunately, the Band doesn’t show your progress toward fitness
goals, or remind you to move if you’ve been inactive for too long, two standard
features you get with most fitness trackers that would be nice
to see added in the future. 

For comparison, the Fitbit Inspire HR lets you set goals for
metrics like calories, time, or distance so that the tracker alerts you when
you hit that goal. That way, you can have it notify you after you’ve reached a
certain distance when running, so you don’t have to keep checking your wrist.
The Inspire HR also offers auto recognition for workouts like running, biking, and swimming in case you forget to start tracking manually, and gives you an
estimate of your VO2 Max, or your cardio fitness score. You don’t get these features with the Wyze Band.

The Samsung Galaxy Fit, meanwhile, also offers a number of fitness
tracking features the Wyze Band lacks. It supports more than 90 activities,
lets you create goals for specific workouts in the Samsung Health app, and
features automatic recognition for activities like the treadmill, running,
elliptical, rowing, and dynamic workouts. You’re paying more for these devices, but you’re also getting more.

Alarms, Notifications, and Clock Customization

The Band doesn’t support downloadable apps, but it offers some useful built-in functionality. You can set up to six alarms in the Wyze app, and the Band will
vibrate at the designated time. That allows it to wake you
up without disturbing a partner or roommate. The Find Phone feature is also
handy. If you misplace your phone, just press the Find Phone button on the Band, and an alarm will ring on your phone. 

The Band does a good job of displaying notifications from your
phone. For incoming Coinbase notifications and Slack messages, for instance,
the Band vibrates and shows a preview on its screen. It also vibrates for phone
calls and displays caller ID information. That’s a handy feature if you leave
your phone in a bag or in another room when working to avoid

From the Wyze app, you can easily customize the clock face,
including the background, display layout, and font color. There are several
preset backgrounds to choose from, or you can upload a photo from your phone. I
really enjoyed the clock face customization options. I used a photo of my
boyfriend and I as my background, and it looks great on the screen.


If you’re in the market for an entry-level fitness tracker and/or
you own other Wyze or Alexa-connected smart home devices you want to control
from your wrist, the Wyze Band is a terrific choice. In many ways it’s comparable
with the $100 Fitbit Inspire HR and Samsung Galaxy Fit, but only costs a quarter of the price. Of course, the Inspire HR and Galaxy Fit have more advanced fitness features, but they lack
the smart home controls the Wyze Band offers. All are strong choices depending on
which features you’re after.

If you’re new to fitness trackers and just want to test the waters, the Wyze Band gives you that ability, plus smart home
controls, for about the same price as a few lattes. Its ample
feature set and low price earn it our Editors’ Choice.

Wyze Band Specs

Form Factor Wrist
Display Type AMOLED
Compatibility Android, iOS
Heart Rate Monitor Yes
Sleep Tracker Yes
Battery Life 10 days

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Further Reading

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