Product: BodyTrace eScale
The life of a blogger can easily be spent on your backside for all too long, all too easily. Thus we find ourselves with blogger's behind (we finished a half marathon a few month's back, but gave ourselves too much downtime since). But we've finally gotten to the point where we can't deny we need to get back on track with a better diet and exercise regimen, so we've enlisted the aid of some high tech help, the BodyTrace eScale, a GSM transmission weight scale that hopefully will keep us honest with our commitment to better living through a better diet and regular exercise.
The BodyTrace eScale is a fairly simple piece of hardware. It won't measure body fat or water content like our previous body scale, but it ups the ante with an online feature which utilizes an online feature unique to the category. The BodyTrace eScale wirelessly uploads and displays your weight and BMI to the BodyTrace website via GSM (technology used in mobile devices), practically straight out of the box, allowing users to monitor their progress. As noted by BodyTrace president, Gyula Borbely, via our email correspodence, the eScale doesn't require any internet access to transmit data to the site, making it a travel option if you're inclined to lug it with you.
Setup is extremely simple; just insert the batteries, tap the scale surface to turn it on, and then step on the scale for a weight measurement (the scale will even notify you via email to replace the batteries). The eScale does the rest, with your daily measurements sent directly to the site for your review nearly immediately (don't worry, the information is only accesible by you, unless you're a glutton for punishment and turn on the Twitter broadcast feature). After two weeks of use, the scale will use a formula to calculate how long it will take to reach your specified goal, an extremely helpful feature for those us who want constant feedback of how we're progressing. We've got a decent amount of excess blogger blubber to shed, so we're hoping the eScale keeps us honest as we rejoin the land of the active.
The BodyTrace website should be familiar to anyone who has used fitness sites like the Nike+ or Runners+ sites, not only reporting and graphing current and past weight/BMI, but also providing nutritional feedback based upon set goals and food consumed (accessed by a drop down menu with a database of common categories of food), all with a nicely done user interface. We think the website is visually easy to understand for first time users, though the diet/food options interface is a little sparse in features. We'd like to see the incorporation of activities and exercise listed to reflect their impact on everyday calorie requirements and more tracking options incorporated for those looking for more specific guidance. More user customization would be welcome also, but what it does, it seems do very well.
The scale itself is $59.99 with a year of service for free or there's also the option of purchasing the scale for just $9.99, but this option then requires a $9.99 monthly fee; after the first year, a monthly fee of $5.99 is required for the online weight monitoring service with the full price purchase. Hopefully, you'll only need the detailed online aid of the BodyTrace eScale for less than a year, if everything goes to plan and you've met your goals, and afterward you'd be left with a minimalist-modern scale that still looks great in the bathroom. At least that's our plans!
Pros: Affordable price, GSM transmission works flawlessly, website is easy to use/access, scale design tasteful and decor-unobtrusive
Cons: Does not include features such as body fat content and water weight, website's features are fairly simple in options, after first year of ownership scale requires monthly payment.
Apartment Therapy Media makes every effort to test and review products fairly and transparently. The views expressed in this review are the personal views of the reviewer and this particular product review was not sponsored or paid for in any way by the manufacturer or an agent working on their behalf. However, the manufacturer did give us the product for testing and review purposes.