Withings Steel HR Smartwatch review


Noble business watch or sporty Smartwatch? Until now, technology fans always had to choose between the two designs. Withings (formerly Nokia), however, is integrating smart functions into more and more wristwatches that are supposed to offer their users added health value. We tested the Withings Steel HR Smartwatch ourselves and also looked at the experiences of other users. In our test overview we reveal which features are really worthwhile and where there is still room for improvement.

Withings Steel HR Hybrid Smartwatch discreetly monitors the health of its users

With Steel HR, even demanding users finally get a hybrid Smartwatch in a classic analog design that even goes with a suit or business suit. Withings Steel HR automatically detects the wearer’s average heart rate in everyday life. The measurement is carried out using a photoplethysmographic method in which changes in the amount of blood in the wrist are detected using green LED lighting. Overall, Withings Steel HR Smartwatch can detect many different activities and calculate the calories consumed, steps or distances (e.g. while swimming) accordingly.

In addition to the digital split screen for displaying heart rate and smartphone notifications, a mini dial also displays information on the percentage of activity progress. The time, on the other hand, can be read off the classic dial of the fitness watch.

In addition, all measured data on heart rate, activity and sleep analysis are automatically synchronized with the manufacturer’s Health Mate App.

With Withings Steel HR Smartwatch you can achieve (almost) success during sleep.

Who wants to constantly rummage out the smartphone and start various fitness apps? Surely the fewest. Since hardly anyone has the time and desire to think about regular measurements of their health data, most fitness gagdets automatically do this. Withings HR Steel, for example, measures not only the number of steps, running and swimming movements, sleep values and distances, but also personal calorie consumption. The intelligent watch wants to be able to tell for itself whether the wearer is spending time in a fast-paced tennis or squash match, lifting weights, dancing or climbing into the ring for a boxing match.

The Withings Steel HR battery lasts up to 25 days during normal use without intensive exercise, and about 5 days when used in training mode. In our practical test, the battery life was about 7 days, whereby we also used the wake-up mode. It enables a gentle wake-up by the Smartwatch selecting the optimal time within a given time frame. To do this, the watch first analyses the sleep phases of its wearer and automatically registers when the sleep cycle is closest to the natural wake-up time.

After waking up, HR Steel displays important calendar entries and e-mails or forwards calls so that nothing stands in the way of a well-organized, relaxed working day.

What is compatible with Withings Steel HR Hybrid Smartwatch?

  • Health Mate App (Android | iOS)
  • Amazon Alexa

Advantages of Withings / Nokia Steel HR Hybrid Smartwatch

  • Long battery life
  • Short charging time
  • Elegant design

Disadvantages Of Withings / Nokia Steel HR Hybrid Smartwatch

  • No VO2max estimate

Withings Steel HR Limited Edition 36mm in field test

The manufacturer offers the model presented here in many different colours and equipment variants and in the sizes 36 and 40 mm. A few months ago we ordered the Withings Steel HR Limited Edition 36mm Black & Champagne Gold Smartwatch and have been using it since then in everyday life. In the following test report we present our experiences.

This is what we like about the Withings Steel HR Hybrid Smartwatch

Granted: Initially it was the unusual design that attracted our interest in Withings Steel HR. But at second glance at the latest, it became clear that their interior also had a lot to offer. A particularly long battery life, for example, which lasted 7 days when used regularly in our test and can even last up to 25 days when training modes are rarely used. If the battery is empty, it can be recharged very quickly from 0 percent to 100 percent in just 30 minutes.

We also liked the possibility of setting a personal daily target and being able to see at a glance at the Smartwatch at any time how much of this has already been achieved. The possibility to calculate activity calories and total calories separately provides even more motivation.

Withings Steel HR still has room for improvement here

The alarm function of Withings Steel HR worked reliably in the test and the vibrations on the wristband were strong enough to wake up in any case. Unfortunately, individual wake-up times have to be programmed into the app individually. If, for example, you get up early twice a week, a little later and very late twice because of a part-time job, you have to define this again and again individually. This is because the app only provides a wake-up time for the time between Monday and Friday.

Also not too bad, but somewhat impractical we found that when tracking an activity the time display of the Smartwatch always lights up. Especially in the darkened yoga room this annoyed us, but could not be switched off in our test.

In outdoor sports, runners should also always have their smartphone with them. For example, if you don’t take your smartphone with you when jogging, you have to do without the visual map display of the distance you have covered due to the mandatory Bluetooth connection. This is a pity, but not a special problem of Withings Steel HR, but of all fitness gadets with Bluetooth connection.

Opinions on Withings Steel HR Smartwatch

One of the great advantages of the Withings Steel HR Smartwatch in our test was that the fitness watch reliably fulfils its tasks and saves the “readjustment” on the smartphone. Since it automatically recognizes and classifies activities, there is no need to start the app before getting on your bike. This also increases road safety.

We found the limitation to important basic functions pleasant, because we were not constantly tempted to play around with the smartphone or the clock. In addition, most sports fans only use a limited selection of favorite features anyway. However, competitive athletes who really want to know everything about their fitness level might be better off with an Apple Watch.

All in all, the Withings Steel HR Smartwatch convinced us with its easy handling and practical functions and we therefore make a clear purchase recommendation.

Withings / Nokia Steel HR Hybrid Smartwatch – Technical Details

  • Size: 36 mm or 40 mm
  • Style: gold, pink gold, slate grey or silver
  • Colors (selection): Black / Black Leather, Black / Black Silicone, Blue, Red – Sapphire Glass, White/ Blue Leather, White / Grey Silicone
  • Functions: Heart rate and distance measurement, sleep tracking, pedometer, Smart Wake Up, swim mode, smartphone notifications – suitable for forwarding text messages, calls and appointments
  • Battery range: up to 25 days in normal operation / up to 5 days in training mode
  • Charging time: approx. 1 hour for 80 percent, approx. 2 hours for 100 percent
  • Equipment: Magnetic charging cable
  • Waterproof: up to 50 m
  • Warranty: 2 years

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