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Halo Band vs WHOOP (2021): Comparing Activity Trackers Without A Screen

If you want a fitness tracker that doesn’t draw too much attention, then a screenless device is a good option. Here, the Halo Band and WHOOP Strap 4.0 are arguably two of the better-known models. Halo Band, a product of Amazon, follows a holistic approach to fitness and health. The WHOOP Strap 4.0, on the other hand, is the latest hardware iteration of the company’s fitness and health program. While you can use the Halo Band without a subscription, the WHOOP device can only be availed with a membership. So which fitness tracker should you get?

Halo Band vs WHOOP Comparison Chart

ModelHalo BandWHOOP Strap 4.0
 Amazon Halo Band – Measure how you move, sleep, and sound – Designed with privacy in mind -...Whoop Strap 4.0 Fitness Tracker
PriceCheck Price at AmazonCheck Price at WHOOP
SizesSmall, Medium, Large (fabric band)
Small/Medium, Medium/Large (sport band)
One size only
Water ResistanceSwimproof, water-resistant up to 50 metersIP68 rated, water-resistant up to 10 meters
Heart RateYesYes
Sleep TrackingYesYes
Pulse OximeterNoYes
Skin TemperatureYesYes
Body CompositionYesNo
Tone or Voice AnalysisYesNo
Compatible With ApparelNoYes
Battery LifeUp to 7 daysUp to 5 days
AppAmazon HaloWHOOP App

Design

Except for the style of the link and case for the sensors, the Halo Band and WHOOP have almost identical designs.

Halo Band vs WHOOP Design
The Amazon Halo Band using a sport strap (left) and the WHOOP Strap 4.0’s reconfigured sensor area (right).

The Halo Band and WHOOP Strap 4.0 both adopt a minimalist aesthetic. They’re essentially just wristbands that carry a powerful sensor underneath. Compared to other screenless devices, the straps on these trackers are thicker, too. Nonetheless, they are lightweight fitness companions that you’d forget you’re wearing.

On the Halo Band, you can opt for either fabric or sports bands. The fabric style uses a blend of polyester, nylon, and spandex and comes in three sizes. Meanwhile, the sport strap is made of high-performance silicone that’s more sweatproof but is limited to two types of overlapping sizes. Color and style will vary between the fabric and sport bands.

The WHOOP Strap 4.0, on the other hand, comes in only one size. However, its length is adjustable to fit any wrist circumference. It also uses the new SuperKnit Bands designed to make it easier to swap the sensor between bands or compatible apparel. Unlike the Halo Band, the WHOOP Strap 4.0 can be placed on specialized compression tops and sports bras with built-in pods.

Even though WHOOP‘s tracker doesn’t have sport-style bands, it comes in more colors compared to Amazon’s Halo Band, too. Users can also customize the 4.0’s band, clasp, link, and hook colors.

Halo Band vs WHOOP Hardware Features

Hardware

Beyond appearances, most of what makes these straps powerful are in their sensor capsules. The Halo Band’s body features a heart rate monitor, temperature monitor, and accelerometer. It’s also equipped with two microphones, a button to disable the microphones, and LED indicator lights.

Meanwhile, the WHOOP Strap 4.0 boasts upgraded hardware from the WHOOP Strap 3.0 model. The latest iteration of the tracker comes with a sensor area that contains five LEDs for improved accuracy. Aside from the heart rate monitor, the 4.0 now comes with a skin temperature sensor. It’s also equipped with a spinning motor to provide users haptic alerts.

Fitness and Health

While they may lack a screen, the Halo Band and WHOOP certainly do not lack fitness and health features.

Halo Band vs WHOOP Fitness and Health
The Amazon Halo tracks activity intensity (left); the WHOOP‘s sensor is placed into a special built-in pod of a sports bra (right).

Amazon’s wearable divides its holistic monitoring approach into five areas. Activity, for instance, covers activity sessions and intensity. It also includes heart rate and activity metrics like steps and calories burned. Users also get a Sleep tool for tracking their nocturnal habits. For those who want guided programs, Labs offers science-backed exercises and workouts.

Perhaps the Halo Band’s biggest draw, however, will be the Body and Tone features. As its name suggests, Body refers to body composition. Measurements are taken using your smartphone’s camera instead of through bioimpedance analysis. Tone, on the other hand, analyzes your voice to help you understand how it may sound to others.

Meanwhile, WHOOP‘s Strap 4.0 divides insights into four areas. Users can get a bigger picture through the Overview data. But the 4.0 also monitors Strain, Recovery, and Sleep. For strain, you can see beyond steps and calories. Additional information includes how much effort or stress you put in a day. Recovery, on the other hand, tracks heart rate, heart rate variability, and respiratory rate.

When it comes to sleep, you don’t just see the stages of your rest. WHOOP also assesses sleep quality and measures sleep debts. Haptic alerts, on the other hand, wake you up once you’ve achieved optimal recovery. The 4.0 adds new features from the Strap 3.0, too. A few of the latest capabilities are pulse oximeter, skin temperature tracking, and a comprehensive Health Monitor view.

Subscription

The Halo Band can work even without a Halo Membership. With WHOOP, you pay for the subscription and get the fitness tracker for free.

Halo Band vs WHOOP Membership and Mobile App
Here are some of the services offered with a Halo Membership (left); a closer look at WHOOP‘s powerful companion app (right).

Subscription to their respective memberships is crucial to the Halo Band and WHOOP Strap 4.0. However, the approach they take largely differs. Amazon’s wearable, for instance, will work even if you don’t sign up with Halo.

As a standalone unit, the Halo Band still provides heart rate, calories, and steps metrics. Waking and sleeping times, along with sleep temperature, are also available for free. Access to Labs programs, however, will be limited. Body composition and tone analysis are also accessible only with a Halo Membership.

Fortunately, Amazon includes free, full-access membership for six months with every purchase of the Band. Once that expires, the subscription will auto-renew for $3.99/month. Amazon is also introducing Halo Fitness and Halo Nutrition features on the platform with no additional cost to the membership.

In contrast, WHOOP users purchase a membership to access the app and get the Strap 4.0 for free. Simply put, you pay for the program and not for the device. Aside from the tracker, a subscription comes with free app updates, coaching features, and access to a community. The membership costs $30/month. However, you can save if you opt for 12 or 18-month plans.

Meanwhile, users who avail of a 12-month membership or longer can get access to WHOOP Pro. At an additional $12/month, the exclusive membership offers 20% discounts on clothes and accessories. Pro members also get early access to new WHOOP releases, free shipping and returns, as well as freebies every quarter.

Battery Life

The Halo Band has a better battery life than the WHOOP Strap 4.0.

Halo Band vs WHOOP Battery Life
Here’s a look at the different colors of the Halo Band fabric strap (left); the WHOOP Strap 4.0 in use (right).

Since we’re talking about screenless devices, expect longer battery life from the Halo Band and WHOOP Strap 4.0. Amazon says its wearable can last for up to seven days. However, if Tone Analysis is enabled, battery life is reduced to just two days. Nonetheless, the charging speed is pretty good. You can go from 0% to 100% in just 90 minutes of charging using the clip-on charger.

WHOOP‘s tracker, on the other hand, offers a five-day battery life like its predecessor. It’s an impressive feat considering the Strap 4.0 is 33% smaller than the Strap 3.0 and comes with more hardware components. WHOOP attributes this to a new silicon anode battery material that delivers 17% more energy density than what’s on the Strap 3.0. The Strap 4.0 also comes with an upgraded waterproof battery pack for charging.

Verdict

The Halo Band will appeal to a broader demographic. The WHOOP Strap 4.0, on the other hand, is better for fitness enthusiasts and athletes.

Halo Band

Best for those on a budget

WHOOP Strap 4.0

Best for fitness enthusiasts and athletes

Whoop Strap 4.0 Fitness Tracker

If you’re in the market for a screenless fitness tracker, then the Halo Band and WHOOP Strap 4.0 are great options. But while they sport the same design and style, there are key differences in how they operate. Amazon’s Halo Band, for instance, can work as a standalone device. Since you pay for the unit, it comes with basic capabilities. You can access more features through a Halo subscription. At under $4/mo for a membership, it’s affordable and should appeal to most people.

With WHOOP, you’re paying for a fitness and health membership. The Strap 4.0 instead comes free with the subscription. You also get more advanced sensors on this tracker compared to the Halo Band. Plus, its mobile app is designed to offer comprehensive insights for fitness enthusiasts and athletes. If you’re serious about training and recovery, then the WHOOP is for you. Just keep in mind subscription can cost a lot, especially if you go for the exclusive WHOOP Pro membership.

Please note that the Halo Band and WHOOP Strap 4.0 are not medical devices. Both bands are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease or health condition. They cannot replace or substitute the services of health care professionals.

FAQs

📌 What is the key difference between the Halo Band and WHOOP?

The Halo Band fitness tracker can be purchased as a standalone unit with limited features. To access advanced capabilities, you’ll need to sign up for Halo Membership. WHOOP, on the other hand, is a fitness and health subscription platform and mobile app. Signing up for a WHOOP membership will include the Strap 4.0 device for free.

📌 How does the Halo Band connect to your phone?

Amazon’s Halo Band uses Bluetooth 5.0 to pair with your smartphone.

📌 Can I use the WHOOP Strap 4.0 for swimming?

Yes, the WHOOP Strap 4.0 can be used for swimming. If you’re concerned about the bands getting wet, you can get WHOOP‘s HydroSleeve. These are elastane bands crafted from silicone, which are water-resistant. They also secure the device on your wrist while swimming or engaged in other water sports or activities.

📌 What is Halo Fitness?

Halo Fitness is one of two new features added to the Halo Membership. According to Amazon, Halo Fitness will offer “hundreds of exclusive, studio-quality workouts” to members at no added cost to subscription.

Last update on 2021-07-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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Mari Bassig

Senior Editor, writer and researcher passionate about gadgets, social media, and music.