I wore the Whoop 4.0 for a month. Why I’m getting rid of it | Digital Trends

I wore the Whoop 4.0 for a month. Why I’m getting rid of it | Digital Trends

Joe Maring / Digital Trends

Over the past year, I’ve developed an obsession with health/fitness trackers. Previously a longtime and dedicated Apple Watch user, my wrist (and fingers) has been home to a myriad of competing wearables — including ones from Garmin, Samsung, Google, Oura, and others.

One fitness tracker that really caught my eye last year is the Whoop 4.0. It tracks your daily activity, workouts, sleep, recovery, and a mountain of other health data. On paper, it looked like exactly the type of health wearable I’ve been searching for.

I wore the Whoop 4.0 for myself for about a month and a half to see if it was for me, and while there’s a lot about the tracker I like, there’s one big drawback that’s caused me to end my time with it.

Everything I love about the Whoop 4.0

Someone holding an iPhone 15 Pro Max with the Whoop app open on it.
Joe Maring / Digital Trends

So much about the Whoop experience is fantastic — and all of it boils down to the Whoop app and the data it collects about you.

Like any fitness tracker, the Whoop 4.0 needs an initialization period to get a baseline for your health before you get anything of real value out of it. That means your first week or so may feel a bit awkward as the app isn’t able to tell you very much about your body – at least not right from the get-go. Unlike some other wearables, though, the Whoop app does a great job of guiding you through your first month wearing the Whoop 4.0.

Periodically throughout your first month, the Whoop app prompts you to watch check-in videos and perform certain tasks to help you get the best start possible. The videos talk about what your Whoop is doing during that month, while some of the tasks prompt you to track your first activity, set up your daily journal, check in on your first week of progress, etc. It’s much more guidance than you’ll find when you strap on an Apple Watch or Galaxy Watch for the first time, and I really appreciate this whole onboarding experience.

As time goes on, the insights the Whoop 4.0 can provide about your body are fantastic.

Screenshots of Sleep, Recovery, and Strain pages from the Whoop app.
Whoop’s Sleep, Recovery, and Strain pages Digital Trends

There are three main goals you focus on with the Whoop platform: Strain, Sleep, and Recovery. Strain indicates how much strain your body is under during a given day, whether that’s physical strain from exercising or mental strain from stress or other factors. Sleep calculates your night’s sleep using a score up to 100 to indicate the quality of your sleep, while Recovery also uses a 1-100 scale to show how much work your body is able to handle at the start of each day.

love this methodology of tracking my body’s health. Your Strain score isn’t calculated on a 1 to 100 scale the way your Sleep and Recovery are. Instead, it’s an open goal left for you to decide how much you want to work each day. Based on your Sleep and Recovery, the Whoop app recommends a Strain goal for you to reach.

This is a lot to take in at first, but as you continue to use the Whoop app and see how various exercises and everyday activities impact your Strain, it quickly becomes an easy metric to follow. Furthermore, Whoop provides guidance in the app to let you know if a particular day was strenuous on your body, or if it had a moderate impact, etc.

Screenshots of the home page of the Whoop app.
Whoop’s complicated but informative home page Digital Trends

I’ll be the first to admit that this isn’t nearly as easy as closing your three rings on an Apple Watch. It takes time to understand these three metrics and know what they mean. But if you put in the work and make an effort to read through all of the data, I think it’s a lot more valuable.

I closed my Activity ring on my Apple Watch? Great! But how much strain does a 3-mile run put my body under compared to a 30-minute strength training session? And if I really focus on getting a good night’s sleep, how much more capable does that make my body the next day? Those aren’t things I can easily glean from most smartwatches, but the Whoop 4.0 makes it relatively easy.

A screenshot of the three rings in the Apple Fitness app.
Apple Fitness’ simpler but less resourceful home page Digital Trends

Beyond sleep and exercise, the Whoop 4.0 can also show you how other daily activities help or hurt your body. When you open the app at the start of each day, you’re prompted to fill out your journal. Your journal is used to keep tabs on various activities you did or didn’t partake in each day — such as if you consumed any alcohol, if you had any caffeine, if you used your phone in bed, if you took various types of medication, etc.

You can customize what items you want in your journal, and then each morning, confirm if you did or didn’t do that thing. After you’ve completed enough entries, your Whoop 4.0 looks at your answers and compares them with your health data to let you know how a certain thing impacts your body. We all know that alcohol is bad for you, but exactly how much does it worsen your body’s performance? If you regularly fill out your journal to let Whoop know when you do and don’t have a drink, you can see that impact clear as day.

The journal and Whoop Coach features in the Whoop app.
The Whoop journal feature (left) and the Whoop Coach Digital Trends

There’s another element of the Whoop app I love, and that’s the Whoop Coach. Powered by OpenAI’s GPT-4 platform, Whoop Coach is a chatbot that you can ask about virtually anything relating to your Whoop health data. You can ask it about your sleep, exercise performance, data from your journal, etc. I was apprehensive at first, initially inclined to brush it off as another AI gimmick. But it’s actually quite helpful.

How did a certain run impact my body? What was my best night of sleep? What’s my average heart rate during strength training workouts? I could find all of this data if I dug around in the Whoop app enough myself, but being able to ask very specific questions about my health and get a natural, written response is kind of amazing.

Getting the most out of the Whoop experience depends on you wearing the tracker 24/7 and updating the journal every day with as much information as possible. That’s not going to work for everyone, and that’s completely fine. But if you have the discipline to put in the effort to make Whoop work, the data you get from it is well worth it.

The hardware is the problem

Someone wearing a Whoop 4.0 and an Apple Watch Ultra 2.
Joe Maring / Digital Trends

If Whoop is so great, why am I no longer wearing it? It has nothing to do with the Whoop app or anything I just talked about. My dealbreaker with the Whoop 4.0 is its hardware.

As you’ve probably seen by now, there’s no screen on the Whoop 4.0. You wear it on your wrist like a Fitbit, but there’s virtually nothing to do with the tracker itself. Beyond having it vibrate you awake with an alarm and double-tapping it to silence said alarm, that’s the only interaction you have with the Whoop 4.0 as a wearable. And that’s a problem.

I’m always wearing a smartwatch on my left wrist. For the past few months, it’s been the Apple Watch Ultra 2. I don’t want to stop wearing a smartwatch, so that means having to wear the Whoop 4.0 on my right wrist while still wearing the Apple Watch on my left one. I didn’t think I’d mind this, and at first, I didn’t.

However, after a month and a half of wearing an Apple Watch on one wrist and the Whoop on my other, I couldn’t do it anymore.

My dealbreaker with the Whoop 4.0 is its hardware.

Wearing something on each wrist requires commitment. Some people can pull it off, even with a smartwatch and a regular watch on each wrist. But I’m not one of those people. It becomes irritating, you get bad tan lines on both wrists, and the Whoop 4.0 can be weirdly uncomfortable at times — occasionally pinching the hairs on my wrist much more often than any other wearable I’ve tried.

If the Whoop 4.0 was a smartwatch and let me interact with my notifications, music, etc., I’d be inclined to replace my Apple Watch with it. But given its current hardware, it’s not something I can live with.

A brilliant (but flawed) charging system

There is another hardware issue with the Whoop 4.0, and that’s the way it charges.

The Whoop 4.0 comes with the Whoop Battery Pack. When your Whoop’s battery starts to run low, you don’t plug in a cable or place it on a charging puck. Instead, you slide the Battery Pack onto the wearable. This is a cool idea. When your battery life gets low, just slide the Battery Pack onto your Whoop 4.0 and keep going about your day. You still get to wear the tracker while the Battery Pack juices it up, meaning you charge the wearable without having to pause tracking any of your health data.

As inventive as this system is, it’s also incredibly awkward. The Battery Pack is capable of one full recharge for your Whoop 4.0 tracker. Once your Whoop 4.0 battery is back to 100%, you need to take off the Battery Pack and then plug it in with a USB-C cable so it’s ready to go the next time you need it. This may not sound difficult on paper, but it effectively means you have to regularly track the battery life for two things instead of just one. In a world where we all already have numerous gadgets we have to charge regularly, remembering to plug in your tiny Whoop Battery Pack is a pretty easy thing to forget.

No more Whoop for me

The Whoop 4.0 lying on a wood railing.
Joe Maring / Digital Trends

The Whoop 4.0 isn’t like any other wearable I’ve used in recent years — from the ridiculously in-depth software to the annoying flawed hardware. It’s a frustrating product because there are so many aspects I truly love, so much so that I’d be inclined to pay the incredibly high $30/month subscription required to use it. But one of the most fundamental things about it can’t be fixed (at least not in this current iteration).

I’m disappointed that I can’t make the Whoop 4.0 fit into my life, but I’m also excited to see what the inevitable Whoop 5.0 and Whoop 6.0 look like. I’m not sure if a proper smartwatch is on Whoop’s roadmap, but if the company ever decides to head in that direction, I’ll be the first one in line, eager to slap it on my wrist.

Until that day, though, I’m going back to my one-wrist wearable life.

Editors’ Recommendations

Fitbit Presidents Day deals: Save on Fitbit Sense 2 and more | Digital Trends

Fitbit Presidents Day deals: Save on Fitbit Sense 2 and more | Digital Trends

Andy Zahn / Digital Trends

This Presidents Day, there are some great Fitbit deals going on with discounts on highly-sought after Fitbit devices. If you’re in need of a new way of effectively tracking your steps and calories burned now that the better weather is (slowly) approaching, this is your chance to do so while saving some money. We’ve picked out the best Fitbit Presidents Day deals and listed them all below so you know exactly where to go without needing to search yourself. We’ve also looked at what to do before buying one, such as what you need to consider before you make a purchase.

Best Fitbit Presidents Day deals

Fitbit deals are fairly varied this Presidents Day with a little bit of everything on sale. Whether you’re looking for a budget device for your active child or you want a stylish wearable for your own wrist, you’re in luck. Here are the best Fitbit Presidents Day deals.

  • Fitbit Ace 3 —

  • Fitbit Inspire 2 —

  • Fitbit Luxe —

  • Fitbit Versa 2 —

  • Fitbit Charge 5 —

  • Fitbit Charge 6 —

  • Fitbit Sense 2 —

How to choose a Fitbit on Presidents Day

It feels fairly recent that there were only a couple of Fitbits to choose from but nowadays, the best Fitbit encompasses many different types. It’s important to think about what you need from one of the best fitness trackers so that you spend wisely.

Starting out, think about what you want from the Fitbit in terms of style. It’s possible to buy a simple wearable that slots onto your wrist like a bracelet but you can also spend a lot more and enjoy something that looks more like one of the best smartwatches. It all depends on the aesthetic you’re aiming for. From there, it’s time to think about how you plan to use your Fitbit. All Fitbits will track your steps and calories burned. Others like the Fitbit Charge 6 include built-in GPS along with a heart rate sensor so it’s important to think about if you need accurate routes and the ability to monitor your heart rate at all times.

If you want a more Apple Watch-style experience, check out the Fitbit Sense 2 which looks classy and elegant, while offering a lot of functionality. Besides tracking your fitness, it also monitors your stress levels and helps you pinpoint what’s bothering you. There’s extensive app support while the screen is vibrant and easier to use than the smaller displays of the Charge series. You’ll be paying a premium for the privilege but it looks great.

If you’re buying for a child, you can’t go wrong with the Fitbit Ace 3. It has all the key features you need along with fun, family challenges, and a cute, animated interface.

In all cases, think about what you need from a fitness tracker and go from there. All Fitbits cover the basics but if you want mental health tracking, look for Fitbits which offer stress monitoring and even guided meditations. They can make the world of difference. For other purposes, also think about if you need music functions, on-screen workouts, or even voice assistant support.

Editors’ Recommendations

Gizmodo Reviews: Bose Ultra Open Earbuds, Razer Blade 16, and More

Gizmodo Reviews: Bose Ultra Open Earbuds, Razer Blade 16, and More

This week, the team got their hands on an Apple Vision Pro, but its high price could be a real barrier to entry for those looking for a high-end AR/VR headset. We also reviewed the powerful Razer Blade 16 gaming laptop and Bose’s fancy new Ultra Open earbuds, which look like high-tech earrings.

Read more…

Smartwatch Sale: Apple Watch, Samsung Galaxy Watch & More | Digital Trends

Smartwatch Sale: Apple Watch, Samsung Galaxy Watch & More | Digital Trends

Andy Boxall / Digital Trends

If you don’t own a smartwatch yet, or you’ve got your sights set on an upgrade, you should take advantage of Best Buy’s ongoing smartwatch sale. Whether you’re a fan of the Apple Watch, the Samsung Galaxy Watch, a Fitbit wearable device, or any of the other popular brands for the wearable devices, there’s something for you in the dozens of smartwatch deals that are available. We’ve highlighted our top picks below, but feel free to take a look at what else is included in the sale — you need to hurry though, as the discounts may disappear at any moment.

What to buy in Best Buy’s smartwatch sale

The Apple Watch Ultra 2 laying on the ground, showing the Modular Ultra watch face.
Joe Maring / Digital Trends

If you’re after Apple Watch deals, the cheapest options in Best Buy’s smartwatch sale are the GPS, 40mm model of the Apple Watch SE 2, which is available for

instead of $249, and its GPS, 44mm model that’s

from $279. The latest versions of the Apple Watch are also discounted, with the GPS, 41mm model of the Apple Watch Series 9 available

from $399 and its GPS, 45mm model

from $429, while the GPS + Cellular, 49mm model of the Apple Watch Ultra 2 is

from $800, but only for Verizon.

For those who prefer the Samsung Galaxy Watch, you can go for the 40mm, Bluetooth Samsung Galaxy Watch 6, which is

from $300, or its 44mm, Bluetooth model, which is

from $330. You can also get the Samsung Galaxy Watch 6 Classic with a discount, with the 43mm, Bluetooth version

instead of $400, and the 47mm, Bluetooth version

instead of $430.

If you want a fitness-focused smartwatch, we highly recommend going for Fitbit deals. Best Buy is currently selling the Fitbit Versa 4 at only $150 from $200, and the Fitbit Sense 2 at only $200 from $250. Both versions of the Google Pixel Watch are also available, with the first-generation Google Pixel Watch at $200 instead of $280 and the Google Pixel Watch 2 at $300 instead of $350. Other smartwatches that you may want to buy in this sale include the Citizen CZ Smart, which is down to $263 from $350, and the Garmin Instinct Solar, which is down to $267 from $350.

Whether you want a new Apple Watch, Samsung Galaxy Watch, Fitbit device, or any other brand of smartwatch, make sure to check Best Buy’s ongoing smartwatch sale for any discounts that may appeal to you. There are dozens of offers to choose from for your next purchase, but you need to hurry with your decision because there’s no telling when the discounts will end, especially for the more popular models of smartwatches. If you take too long to think about it, you may miss out on the savings.

Editors’ Recommendations

The 4 Best Whoop Alternatives in 2024 | Digital Trends

The 4 Best Whoop Alternatives in 2024 | Digital Trends

Whoop is a wearable technology company whose fitness bands track your body’s strain, recovery, and sleep. It’s as popular as many of the best fitness trackers and many of the best smartwatches. Whoops fitness bands are popular amongst professional athletes, but they’re also somewhat expensive. Whoop’s advanced metrics tracking is difficult to match, but there are several Whoop alternatives out there for different price points and fitness needs. We’ve rounded up what we think are the best Whoop alternatives, so read onward for more details.

The best Whoop alternatives in 2024

  • Buy the

    if you want the best Whoop alternative overall.

  • Buy the

    if you want the best Whoop alternative for simplicity.

  • Buy the

    if you want the best premium Whoop alternative.

  • Buy the

    if you want the best Whoop alternative for a budget.

Oura Ring 3 Heritage

Best Whoop alternative overall

Oura Ring
Pros Cons
Feature-packed Inconsistent sizing
Super stylish
Long battery life

Whoop 4.0 and Oura compare well in terms of tracking metrics, even though the Oura Ring lineup is something you wear on your finger and not on your wrist. We think the Heritage is the best Whoop alternative overall due to its balance of capabilities and price point. It’s capable of tracking blood oxygen, hours slept, resting heart rate, skin temperature, and even your daily step count, and it’s compatible with both Apple iOS and Android. It even has access to more than 50 audio meditations. Apple users may especially love the Oura Ring 3 Heritage, as both the iPhone and Apple Watch lineups are capable of displaying Oura data with widgets.

Compatibility Apple iOS, Android
Battery life Up to 7 days

Fitbit Charge 6

Best Whoop alternative for simplicity

A Charge 6 being used on a wrist.
Pros Cons
Feature-packed May have longevity issues
Built-in GPS
Advanced health metrics

Visually the Fitbit Charge 6 is pretty close to what you get with a Whoop band. It’s minimal, unobtrusive, and simple. These are many of the things Whoop users love, and being able to find it in a Fitbit makes for a great Whoop alternative. With the Fitbit Charge 6 you can dive deep into a fitness routine. In addition to tracking things like stress, heart rate variability, and skin temperature, it’s also able to track calorie burn and optimize your workouts. There’s also no need to lug a phone around with you on any of your workouts or outdoor adventures, as the Charge 6 has a built-in GPS that allows you to see your real-time pace and distance, and to see a map of your workout routine in the Fitbit app. It also has a Health Metrics dashboard that provides all of your fitness data for you in one place.

Compatibility Apple iOS, Android
Battery life Up to 7 days

Apple Watch Ultra 2

Best premium Whoop alternative

A person cycling while wearing an Apple Watch Ultra 2
Pros Cons
Feature-packed No blood oxygen tracking
Premium build quality Expensive
Apple software ecosystem

The Apple Watch Ultra 2 is a lot of smartwatch, and while some of its tracking features can’t keep up with Whoop’s, it offers many things you can get with Whoop. It’s incredibly durable and made from luxury materials, and even manages a unique design while still maintaining recognizability as an Apple Watch. It does everything previous Apple Watch models can do, and it comes with LTE cellular capability standard. This will allow you to interact with your web-based world without the need for a wifi connection, making it a great option for travelers and people who like to wander the unbeaten trail. Made to meet the demands of endurance athletes, water sports enthusiasts, outdoor adventurers, and anyone with style, the Apple Watch Ultra will look good on just about any wrist.

Compatibility Apple iOS
Battery life Up to 36 hours

Aura Strap 2

Best budget Whoop alternative

The Aura Strap 2 against a white background.
Pros Cons
Stylish design Awkward software
Body composition analysis
Easy to learn

The Aura Strap 2 offers a gorgeous design to go along with a decent price point. It makes a good Whoop alternative because it’s able to handle all kind of fitness and health tracking. It has body composition analysis that can measure muscle weight, body fat percentage, lean body mass, and body water levels. This device can go a long way toward helping you build the body of your dreams, much in the way Whoop has become known for.

Compatibility Apple iOS, Android
Battery life Up to 6 months

How we chose these Whoop alternatives

There are a lot of great fitness trackers on the market, and we’ve made ourselves familiar with them over the years. We’ve done this both as tech experts and as fitness enthusiasts. We’ve utilized our knowledge of tech and the features that come with fitness trackers to make our selections for the best Whoop alternatives, but we’ve also injected some personal taste. We’ve used many of the fitness trackers held in consideration for the best Whoop alternatives. This, along with affordability, simplicity, and general popularity were all taken into account in making our selections.

This article is managed and created separately from the Digital Trends Editorial team.

Editors’ Recommendations

The 4 Best Oura Ring Alternatives in 2024 | Digital Trends

The 4 Best Oura Ring Alternatives in 2024 | Digital Trends

The Oura Ring brand is incredibly popular. There’s no doubt about it. Just look at our Oura Ring 3 review, where we compliment the ring for its gorgeous design, abundant features, and convenient battery charging. When you’re done, check out this interesting look at the Oura Ring Horizon, where Digital Trends contributor Joe Maring discusses how he keeps bumping into other Digital Trends contributors that have and love the Oura Ring. So much so, that he had to try it. And he loved it, but it ultimately wasn’t for him due to having somewhat boney knuckles. In other words, the Oura Ring is great and if you’re reading this you’re probably enthralled by what they do. However, it isn’t the perfect product for everybody. So, we’re collecting some alternatives that you — and possibly Joe — might like.

The best Oura Ring alternatives in 2024

  • Buy the

    for an Oura Ring alternative with advanced features.

  • Buy the

    if you want a durable smart ring on a budget.

  • Buy the

    for the best smartwatch alternative to the Oura Ring.

  • Buy the

    if you want the Oura Ring alternative that is suitable for your kids.

Ultrahuman Ring Air

Most advanced Oura Ring alternative

Andy Boxall / Digital Trends
Pros Cons
No subscription necessary Advanced app
22 workout modes
Tracks circadian rhythm

The Ultrahuman Ring Air is undoubtedly one of the most complex fitness and sleep tracking rings. If you’re looking at the Oura Ring and wanting to compare it to something, this is the one. In addition to the typical measurements, it looks at your energy levels, circadian cycle, and more. That means it can suggest things like when coffee is good for you. For fitness, you can have nearly two dozen activities measured, including popular ones like walking, running, and even football.

Ultimately, this is a very advanced system. On the surface, that sounds good, but if you’re in agreeance with our Ultrahuman Ring Air review, it can be somewhat too complex. In other words, it is worth it for your if you’re ready to dive into the technicalities of bio-tracking. For example, our reviewer points out that the app refers to a “Circadian Dead Zone” and quickly points out that this is what the average morning person would call “daytime”. Likewise, the Ultrahuman Ring Air gives great advice on shifting your Circadian rhythm but won’t guide you as to why that is useful. To some degree, this means that the Ultrahuman is a technician’s smart ring, great for those willing to dive into the technicals themselves.

Key Specifications
Form factor Ring
Size 5-14

Amovan Smart Ring

Best budget Oura Ring alternative

The Amovan Smart Ring against a white background.
Pros Cons
No subscription fee Sleep tracking best for healthy sleepers
Highly durable construction Biofeedback issues
Low price

Considered one of the best smart rings, the Amovan tracks fitness and sleep health while remaining tough. In fact, that’s its big selling point. The Amovan is made from Titanium (the same material as the Oura Ring) and has a tough exterior. Likewise, it can withstand up to 100 meters of water resistance (just like an Oura Ring). There is really a lot to like here and, considering the same basics are covered, the Amovan appears similar to the Oura Ring enough for it to be a stand out competitor.

One thing to note is that it has automatic sleep tracking. However, this automatic sleep tracking is from 10pm to 8am. For many people, sleeping during these hours is a sign of good overall sleep anyhow. Things like this and reports that hand movements can be recorded as steps make this product not as good as an Oura Ring. The Amovan, however, balances this out by being offered at a much lower price. In other words, you get an affordable, durable ring, that gives the basics of biofeedback via an Amovan.

Key Specifications
Form factor Ring
Size 6-13

Fitbit Charge 6

Best watch alternative to the Oura Ring

Sleep tracking information on a Fitbit Charge 6.
Joe Maring / Digital Trends
Pros Cons
>40 exercise modes Requires FitBit Premium for full features
Sleep tracking
Lengthy battery life

While not a smart ring, the FitBit Charge 6 can easily replace the Oura Ring’s features in a style that may very well be more comfortable for you. It has a small design that feels good and its 1-inch AMOLED screen allows for information gathering without using your hands to pull out your smartphone. This means that, unlike an Oura Ring, you can actively learn about yourself while doing “dirty” activities like gardening. While worn, it will track your sleep, ECG, and various activities.

Of course, FitBits are known for having more to them than just fitness and sleep health tracking. Our Fitbit Charge 6 review goes into all of these details, but the basics include: Google Maps, YouTube Music, and Google Wallet integration. This is a fully-featured smartwatch. Oh, and it is also really affordable compared to the Oura Ring, but the temptation to get FitBit Premium may very well increase your long-term costs.

Key Specifications
Form factor Smartwatch
Size Small (140mm – 180mm wrist) and Large (180mm – 220mm wrist)

Fitbit Ace 3

Best Oura Ring alternative for kids

A kid wearing the Fitbit Ace 2.
Pros Cons
Encourages movement and a healthy lifestyle Works best with a parental FitBit
Animated and lively
Fun for the whole family

If mom or dad have an Oura Ring, and love chatting about their body stats, it only follows that the child will want something like that, too. However, rings aren’t likely that wise to put on rapidly growing hands. Instead, a smartwatch made specifically for children is a great alternative, and provides child-appropriate sleep and fitness tracking, alongside age-appropriate health encouragement. For example, reminders to get up and move and plentiful, encouraging increased metabolism and a lifetime of movement in an age of increasing youth obesity and earlier sedimentary lifestyles.

Our FitBit Ace 3 review will be the first to point out that the children’s smartwatch works best with a family of FitBit users. When used together as a family, it allows for fun challenges and more. That means it might not be perfect if you’re an Oura Ring only kind of family, but it’s an absolutely fun experience if your family is connected.

Key Specifications
Form factor Smartwatch
Size One size (S and L bands included)

How we chose these Oura Ring alternatives

If we boil the Oura Ring down to its most basic properties, we see three things: an object that is a ring, an object that can track sleep, and an object that can track fitness.

Ring, Fitness, Sleep… these are the three key ingredients of an Oura Ring

Surprisingly, the ring part of the Oura Ring was the most discardable element. Our colleague Joe, after all, lost out on a great sleep and fitness tracker as a result of its shape. The reality is, we’re looking for sleep and fitness trackers here, if they’re in the form of a ring, that’s just a bonus (sometimes). To put it another way, many people that wear an Oura Ring would consider wearing a hypothetical “Oura Necklace” as a substitute. Few, however, would wear a rose gold wedding band and substitute it for an Oura Ring, that just doesn’t make sense.

Additionally, we favored trusted products that had either been reviewed in-house or recommended before. This doesn’t mean that just anything we’ve enjoyed in the past made it in, however. Our personal experience from the Whoop 4.0 review kept it out of the list.

A final word on Oura Ring alternatives in 2024

One somewhat awkward part of writing this in the beginning of 2024 is the upcoming Samsung Galaxy Ring was teased just days before this article was published. Many of you probably came to this page looking for information on the Galaxy Ring, as some coverage of it hyped its appearance so much that it seemed as if it were launched today. In fact, it is not. Luckily, good Oura Ring alternatives exist today, but we can also expect the wearable ring market to continue pumping out updates, innovation, and even products in the year to come.

This article is managed and created separately from the Digital Trends Editorial team.

Editors’ Recommendations

Google Assistant Is About to Lose a Ton of Features

Google Assistant Is About to Lose a Ton of Features

Photo: OpturaDesign (Shutterstock)

Google Assistant is about to lose 17 different features that the company says are “underutilized.” The changes come as the tech giant is in the midst of firing large amounts of staff, including many from its Google Assistant team, according to CNBC.

Google published a blog post Thursday detailing the feature cuts, which it says will ultimately help create a “more consistent experience” for users of the virtual assistant.

Some of the features to go include stuff like using your voice to send an email or audio message, the ability to check personal travel itineraries by voice, voice control options for Fitbit Sense and Versa 3 devices, a meditation integration with Calm, and other convenient options. The full list of features that will disappear can be viewed here.

Starting Jan. 26, users who attempt to access these features will be greeted by a notification explaining their unavailability past a certain date. To comfort app users who may have actually liked many of these features, Google had the following to say:

We know change can be disruptive, but we’ll do everything we can to make these transitions as smooth as possible. While Google Assistant has evolved a lot over the last seven years, one thing remains true: Our improvements are driven by your feedback. And we want to hear it.

Even if Google wants to frame these recent changes as a way to make the Assistant user experience leaner and cleaner, it’s also hard not to see it as connected to the fact that the company just downsized the team in charge of the app’s development.

Google laid off hundreds of workers from both its hardware and engineering divisions Thursday, which is the most significant cut the company has gone through since it parted ways with 12,000 workers early last year. Like other tech companies, Google has made it known that these labor cuts are due partially to its pivot towards a greater reliance on artificial intelligence.

Best Smartwatch Deals: Samsung, Google, Apple, and Garmin | Digital Trends

Best Smartwatch Deals: Samsung, Google, Apple, and Garmin | Digital Trends

Andy Boxall / Digital Trends

If you’re thinking about buying a new smartwatch, whether it will be your first time to own one or you’re planning to upgrade from an older model, you shouldn’t skip the smartwatch deals that are available from the various retailers. There’s an overwhelming number of options out there though, so if you take too much time thinking about what to buy, you’re going to miss out on all the discounts. To help you out, we’ve rounded up our top picks among smartwatches made by Samsung, Google, Apple, Fitbit, and Garmin, alongside more deals that you may find interesting. Hurry up and make your purchase as soon as possible if you want the savings!

Fitbit Inspire 3 — $70, was $99

A render of the Fitbit Inspire 3.
Fitbit / Fitbit

If you want an affordable smartwatch that’s focused on recording fitness metrics, you can’t go wrong with the Fitbit Inspire 3. It’s in our roundup of the best Fitbit devices as the one that provides the best value, as it will just keep working without you even realizing that you’re wearing it because it’s so light and comfortable. It also offers a 10-day battery life, a bright and colorful AMOLED display, and the capability to monitor heart rate, blood oxygen, your sleeping patterns, and more.

Garmin Vivoactive 5 — $250, was $300

The Garmin Vivoactive 5's main watch face.
Mark Jansen / Digital Trends

The Garmin Vivoactive 5 offers exceptional fitness and health tracking, allowing you to stay on top of your heart rate, respiration, stress, sleep, and pulse oxygen, among other helpful metrics. Compatible with both iOS and Android smartphones, the Garmin Vivoactive 5 features a bright and colorful AMOLED display where all the numbers that you need to see are clear, a battery that can last up to 11 days on a single charge, and the ability to play music even if you don’t bring your smartphone with you as you can download your favorite tracks directly into the device.

Google Pixel Watch 2 — $300, was $350

Someone wearing the Google Pixel Watch 2 with a yellow/green fabric band.
Joe Maring / Digital Trends

The Google Pixel Watch 2 features a lighter but more advanced design compared to the Google Pixel Watch, with new sensors for tracking heart rate, skin temperature, and stress management. It’s comfortable to wear 24.7, and you’ll rarely have to take it off because its battery can last more than 24 hours. The Google Pixel Watch 2 also grants access to popular Google apps on your wrist, including Gmail and Calendar, and it will work seamlessly with other devices under Google’s Pixel brand.

Samsung Galaxy Watch 6 Classic — $315, was $399

The Samsung Galaxy Watch 6 Classic showing a red watch face.
Andy Boxall / Digital Trends

The Samsung Galaxy Watch 6 Classic is the premium version of the Samsung Galaxy Watch 6. While both models share health and fitness tracking capabilities, the Samsung Galaxy Watch 6 Classic looks more like a traditional watch with its stainless steel case compared to the sporty look of the Samsung Galaxy Watch 6, and it also keeps the rotating bezel that you’ll use to navigate its interface. Our Samsung Galaxy Watch 6 Classic versus Samsung Galaxy Watch 6 comparison highlights more differences, so feel free to check it out.

Apple Watch Series 9 — $349, was $399

The Nike Globe watch face on the Apple Watch Series 9.
Andy Boxall / Digital Trends

The Apple Watch Series 9 is the best smartwatch for the iPhone, according to our roundup of the best smartwatches, with its extensive health, fitness, and safety features combined with fast and smooth performance. You also wouldn’t want any other wearable device with your iPhone because it’s very easy to pair it with the Apple Watch Series 9. You won’t mind wearing the smartwatch the whole day because it’s extremely comfortable on your wrist, and Apple’s S9 chip enables new capabilities such as processing Siri commands locally on the Apple Watch Series 9.

More smartwatch deals we love

The Fitbit Sense 2 in moss.
Andy Zahn / Digital Trends

If none of the smartwatch deals above excite you, check out the other amazing offers that we’ve come across. There’s something for everyone, ranging from cheaper previous-generation models to premium wearable devices, so at least one of these bargains should catch your eye. Once that happens, you’re going to have to proceed with the transaction as soon as possible because we’re not sure how much time is remaining on these discounts.

  • Fitbit Versa 2 —

  • Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 —

  • Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 Classic —

  • Apple Watch SE (2nd Gen) —

  • Google Pixel Watch —

  • Fitbit Sense 2 —

  • Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 —

  • Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro —

  • Garmin Fenix 6S Sapphire —

  • Apple Watch Ultra 2 —

More Unmissable Deals

Google lays off hundreds of employees in its Assistant, hardware and other divisions

Google lays off hundreds of employees in its Assistant, hardware and other divisions

Google has laid off “several hundred” workers in multiple divisions each in a new round of belt tightening, according to reports from The New York Times, 9to5Mac, Semafor and others. Divisions affected include hardware (Pixel, Nest and Fitbit), core engineering and Google Assistant. The cuts — which appear to be at least 600 but may be higher — are already effective and workers impacted have reportedly been informed.

“We’re responsibly investing in our company’s biggest priorities and the significant opportunities ahead,” a Google spokesman told the NYT in a statement. “Some teams are continuing to make these kinds of organizational changes, which include some role eliminations globally.”

As part of the cuts, Google is said to be reorganizing its Pixel, Nest and Fitbit divisions, and Fitbit co-founders James Park, Eric Friedman and other leaders are leaving the company. The company will reportedly have one team responsible for hardware engineering across all three divisions.

“We’ve had to make some difficult decisions about ongoing employment of some Google employees and we regret to inform you that your position is being eliminated,” the company told some employees in the core engineering division, according to a note seen by the NYT.

The company declined to respond to The Verge when asked if it reduced headcount in any other divisions — so the total number of layoffs isn’t clear. Last year, Google made some of its largest job cuts ever, laying off around 12,000 people in January. As of late last year, the company employed 182,381 people, and counted 118,899 at the beginning of 2020, just ahead of the COVID-19 pandemic.

That was part of a wider reduction in jobs across the industry in 2023, with over 220,000 layoffs during the year. Those came from larger companies like Meta, Alphabet, Microsoft, Spotify and Amazon, along with numerous small, medium-sized and startup firms. Engadget has reached out to Google for comment about the layoffs and will update the story if required.

The best Google Pixel Watch deals you can shop right now | Digital Trends

The best Google Pixel Watch deals you can shop right now | Digital Trends

Smartwatches have become an important tool when trying to keep up with the electronic world we live in, especially since it saves you the trouble of pulling out your phone and looking at a screen. There are, of course, an absolute ton of smartwatches to pick from, from Apple’s Watch Series to Samsung’s Galaxy Watch, but if you’re in the Google ecosystem and want its design language, then the Pixel Watch is the one to go for. So far, there have been two iterations of the Pixel Watch you can grab, or if you want something in the same Google family, FitBit is another alternative since it was bought out a few years ago by Google.

Either way, if the offers below don’t quite tickle your fancy, even though they are substantial, there are some other excellent smartwatch deals to take a look at.

Google Pixel Watch — $200, was $350

Andy Boxall/Digital Trends / Digital Trends

My first attempt at a Google Pixel Watch didn’t fare as well as it could have, although this is still a solid smartwatch if you want something that’s in the Google ecosystem and budget-friendly. It has a very unique-looking, rounded, 1.2-inch screen that’s AMOLED, so it’s gorgeous and has excellent image reproduction. It, of course, has heart monitoring and sleep tracking, as well as other fitness sensors and software, although a lot of that is locked behind a Fitbit premium, which, admittedly, you do get six months free when buying this watch.

Google Pixel Watch 2 — $300, was $350

Sleep tracking data on the Google Pixel Watch 2.
Google Pixel Watch 2 Joe Maring / Digital Trends

The Pixel Watch 2 was a much better iteration of the design from Google, and it shows. For starters, it has a battery that can last more than 24 hours, which is a big plus if you don’t want to take it off every night when you sleep for it to charge. It’s much more comfortable to wear overall, and it performs much faster and more smoothly than the original Pixel Watch. That said, a lot of its fitness features are still locked behind a FitBit Premium subscription, which will run you at $10/month after you finish the original six months you get for free. Still, if you like the looks of the Watch 2, it’s a great watch to buy if you’re willing to go for the monthly subscription.

Editors’ Recommendations