One of the perks of being a blogger is that I get to buy all of the cool tech gadgets in the name of science. I've always been a fan of fitness and sleep trackers so every time a new one comes to market, I usually grab it. The three big names in the space right now are the Whoop Strap, the Oura Ring and the Amazon Halo fitness band.
I've used each of them extensively and this article will explain how they differ and which might be best for you.
Free with Membership
$30/Month (less on longer plans)
$3.99/Month after 6 Months Free
4-5 days per Charge
4-7 Days per Charge
1-2 Days with Tone Enabled, Up to 7 Without
Adjustable. Can Add Bicep or Half Sleeve Arm Attachments if You Don't Want a Band Style.
Need Specific Ring Size and Not Adjustable Once Ordered
Comes in small, medium or large but each is adjustable.
Customize Colors for Strap, Clasp and Hook. 1,000s of Possible Combinations.
5 Core Colors (Black, Gray, Silver, Gold and Diamond Crested (Costs Extra) and 2 Ring Styles to Choose From
3 Core Colors (Black, Gold and Silver)
Body Composition Tracking
Voice Tone Tracking
Design and Comfort
The Oura, Whoop or Halo all look nice. It comes down to personal preference.
The Oura Ring is a bit larger than a traditional ring and if you already have a ring or two you wear, you might start to look a little loud, but hey, maybe that's your look! You can also get the ring in different colors.
The only downside to the Whoop and Halo bands is that if you're like me and wear a smart watch, having the bands as well can look a little bit dorky. On their own, they look fine.
The Whoop Strap gives you secondary options though in the form of a bicep band and a half arm sleeve. I bought the bicep band because I didn't love wearing my Apple Watch and the Whoop as a wristband but I found it to be odd fitting and not great for weight lifting.
The arm sleeve does appear to be a much better option that I might go and try if I go back to the Whoop Strap in the future. It seems to hold the band in a more logical way (see below).
If you don't like the look of fitness bands and don't want to wear the bicep band or sleeve (those options aren't ideal for 24/7 wear) you'll probably prefer the Oura Ring.
Since the Oura ring doesn't adjust once you have it like the Whoop and Halo bands, the process of getting one is a little bit more involved if you don't know your ring size.
The good news is that they send you a sample box for sizing when you order so you'll get to see exactly what it looks like (in plastic molds) before you get it. Even if you do know your ring size, you should still proceed with a test kit as the rings do fit a little different than traditional wedding bands or other basic rings you might have. You can cancel your order if you get the sizing box and hate it.
Oura says that it can take up to 7 days for your sizing kit to arrive but I got my kit in about 3 days from ordering it. The recommend that you choose which finger you wear it on (it can be any finger) and wear the sample for at least 24 hrs before pulling the trigger. You don't have to return the kit, you'll just tell them which size you want and it will arrive within 7 days of confirmation.
The Oura Ring is the only one of the three that doesn't have recurring costs. However, it is far more expensive upfront, starting at $299.
Whoop is the most expensive, relatively speaking, at $30/month, but that includes the cost of your band.
The Amazon Halo membership is only $3.99/month and the device costs an easy $99 and comes with 6 free months of community access.
The Whoop community is by far the most engaged one I've been a part of. Whoop's ability to create groups that show your daily scores with others add an awesome level of accountability and camaraderie that I believe dramatically increase the chances of you really pushing yourself.
Oura has no community involvement and the Halo community is still growing.
The community winner here is by far the Whoop Strap and it's not even close. The cross fit community has adopted the Whoop strap and they fuel the community aspect tremendously. The ability to create your own communities with your friends and family is also great.
One thing to note though, if you're like me and are focused on strength training over cardiovascular training like cross fit, the band will be a bit deflating because your "Whoop score" only measures cardiovascular strain and not muscle strain. For example, lifting heavy weights for an hour often gave me a lower score than doing yard work for 20 minutes and it was by a LOT.
Whoop, Halo and Oura in order of best interface to worst.
They are all great but whoop is probably my favorite.
Battery Life and Charging
Each charges extremely quickly. 60-90 minutes gives you a full charge for all three devices.
The Amazon Halo is a power guzzler though if you run the tone analysis. You can set the timeline for when you run it to minimize its impact on battery life, but it will still turn the life of a charge from about 5-7 days to 1-2 days.
The Whoop is the winner in terms of how you charge it. It's the only one of the 3 devices that you never actually have to take off thanks to the slide on battery charger.
Also, all are completely waterproof and can be worn in any scenario.
I didn't notice any serious discrepancies in tracking accuracy across any of the devices.
None of them were perfect though. Many times I'd check my sleep analysis and notice that it logged me as asleep long before I actually was or didn't actually track a waking time in the middle of the night.
My Beef With Each
Amazon Halo - The Amazon halo missed one very obvious connection I'd have liked to see: Alexa! You can't use your band to control Alexa devices. This is surely an effort to conserve an already weak battery life but other bands like the Wzye Band that cost as little as $29 support Alexa and they aren't even an Amazon company!
Whoop Strap - The fitness tracking means little if you aren't doing cardio.
Oura Ring - The best at tracking sleep by far of the three but it pales in comparison on fitness tracking.
I'm sticking with the Amazon Halo for now. The body composition analysis and the tone tracking sold me completely.
However, some of you will prefer one of the other two options.
If sleep tracking is your main goal, the Oura Ring is a great option. If you're deep into cross fit or other high intensity training programs and you want a thriving community to keep you motivated, the Whoop Strap is probably your best bet.
Let me know your thoughts in the comments and I hope this was helpful!
Wait!!! What About the Apple Watch?!?!
I didn't include the Apple Watch or any other smartwatch in this article because I feel like those are a separate product type. I still wear my Apple Watch in addition to whatever fitness band or ring I'm wearing at the time.