Withings Steel HR brings heart rate monitoring to an analog tracker

Withings has announced its latest analog fitness tracker, the Steel HR. This is the first analog fitness tracker that adds heart rate monitoring to it, without taking away from the incredible design of the watch. At first glance, it is hard to tell that it is a fitness tracker, let alone that it can monitor your heart rate as well. It will be available in both 36mm and 40mm cases this time around, so depending on your wrist size you'll be able to purchase the one that fits you best.

You won't need to worry about charging the Steel HR every day as it is said to last for around 25 days per charge with heart rate monitoring. After 25 days of monitoring, it will transition to a power saving mode which gives you an additional 20 days of battery life. While in power saving mode, the Steel HR will continue to track your activity, just not your heart rate.

As for pricing, the 36mm will retail for $179.95 and the 40mm for $199.95 and both will be available beginning in October.

Press release:

Nokia Launches Withings Steel HR, the First Analog Activity-Tracking Watch with Heart Rate Monitoring

Steel HR brings a new level of health tracking: Heart rate monitoring with style, ease, and unsurpassed battery life

September 1, 2016

BERLIN, GERMANY–Withings, part of Nokia and a leader in the connected health revolution, today announced an extension to its activity tracker portfolio with the introduction of Withings Steel HR, a connected health watch with fully-featured activity tracking, heart rate monitoring and smartphone notifications. Continuing to spearhead the unique category of beautifully designed trackers within fashionable timepieces, Steel HR marries classic French design with advanced heart rate monitoring and a 25-day battery life. Steel HR can automatically measure continuous heart rate during workouts, average heart rate during the day, and resting heart rate while sleeping, while also offering a dynamic digital screen that displays your overall health data and smartphone notifications.

Seamless, Modern Design Steel HR has all the features of a stylish analog watch that users actually want to wear: French design, stainless steel casing, chrome hands, and modern silicone straps. In addition, Steel HR will be available in two sizes: 36mm and 40mm. The standard 36mm case with an 18mm strap will be available in black and white. The new 40mm case will be available in black and comes with a 20mm strap.

Like its predecessors, Steel HR features hand dials that show the time and a sub-dial that shows the percentage of personal daily activity goal achieved. The activity goal (e.g. 10,000 steps) is set within the free Withings Health Mate application (available on iOS and Android) and keeps users up to date on their progress. Steel HR also boasts a new dynamic digital screen at the top of the watch face, which displays health data and smartphone notifications. Users can choose the information they would like to be shown on this screen through a multifunctional button on the side of the watch. This button allows users to navigate through data options including calories burned, daily steps, distance, sleep duration and smart alarm, and to receive notifications forcalls, new emails, texts and event reminders.

Best-In-Class Battery Life

Steel HR is powered by a rechargeable battery that lasts up to 25 days, the best battery life for a heart monitoring activity tracker available. After approximately 25 days of heart rate monitoring, Steel HR will transition to power save mode, giving users an additional 20 days of battery life. In power save mode, Steel HR will continue to track basic activity, including steps and swims.

Holistic Approach to Heart Rate Monitoring

Steel HR goes beyond tracking steps by providing users with a more detailed look into their overall health and fitness performance. This is accomplished through a technology called photoplethysmography (PPG), which monitors heart rate using green LED lights to detect variation in the level of blood in the wrist.

During a workout session, users can launch a continuous heart rate session simply by pushing the multifunctional button on the watch. Moreover, Steel HR will automatically initiate continuous heart rate while running. During exercise, seeing real-time heart rate at a glance can help optimize workout intensity and can motivate the user to improve performance. Post-workout, user will then be able to view maximum heart rate, calories burned, and a "time in zone" graph directly within Withings' free Health Mate App.

On a daily basis, users can visualize how much time was spent in each heart rate zone, providing a holistic picture of their activity output. At night, Steel HR also automatically monitors the user's pulse while sleeping to provide resting heart rate - a key metric to assess overall health over time.

"Whether you're an athlete or simply trying to lose a few pounds and get a better handle on your health, knowing your heart rate can help you better understand your overall health and reach your fitness goals,"said Cédric Hutchings, VP of Digital Health, Nokia Technologies. "With the wealth of insights it provides and the extended battery life for a health watch of its type, Steel HR truly is the first of its kind."

Automatic Activity Tracking

Steel HR, like all activity trackers from Withings, has highly-advanced automatic activity recognition capabilities that detect a wide variety of movements and speeds associated with various activities. For walking and running, the device analyzes number of steps, distance covered, and calories burned as well as the duration of the running session. Steel HR is also water-resistant (5 ATM) and automatically recognizes when the user starts swimming, providing the time of the session and the calories burned. At night, Steel HR analyzes light and deep sleep cycles, as well as wake ups, to give users a full understanding of their sleep patterns.

Personal Health Coach

The new Steel HR connects to the free, award-winning Withings Health Mate iOS and Android application. Acting as a powerful resource to manage many aspects of everyday health, Health Mate provides detailed information about activity including heart rate summaries, a daily timeline, personalized advice, and advanced food logging capabilities. It even allows users to share their data and challenge friends via "in app" interactive leaderboards and through social media channels. Health Mate also integrates with over 150 top health and fitness apps to further add to the 360° wellness experience.


At the beginning of October, both versions of Withings Steel HR will be available exclusively at www.withings.com. The 36mm will retail for $179.95 and the 40mm for $199.95. Retail availability for both versions will follow at the end of October.

Jared DiPane
Jared started off writing about mobile phones back when BlackBerry ruled the market, and Windows Mobile was kinda cool. Now, with a family, mortgage and other responsibilities he has no choice but to look for the best deals, and he's here to share them with you.