Fossil Group may call most of its wearables "hybrid" smartwatches, but it doesn't own that term. A number of companies design devices that look like traditional watches but have the internals of a mid- to high-end activity tracker. Withings has done this with its new $199 Steel HR, the smartwatch that replaced the Activité Pop in its wearable lineup. The Steel HR has all the activity tracking features of the Pop and even the original, luxury Activité, but it also has a built-in optical heart rate monitor to provide another level of data in your workout stats. With that extra piece of hardware, it's supposed to be easier to transition between everyday life and the gym with just one device. That convenience is undeniable, however the Steel HR has a few caveats that may limit it in the long run.
Design: A regular watch done right
We officially live in a world where companies make wearables that don't have to be ugly. Withings always had a knack for making attractive products, whether it was wearables or smart home devices. In some ways, you could say it was more of a watch company than a wearable company when it came out with the expensive Activité a few years back. The Steel HR is the evolution of that relatively basic activity tracker into a device that monitors more things than any other Withings wearable has monitored before—without losing the brand's timepiece design. It comes in either a 36mm or 40mm case, and the price depends on the size you get ($179 for the smaller of the two and $199 for the larger). Besides size, the two models are identical.
from Withings Steel HR review: Classy on the outside, inconsistent on the inside