Review: Nevo Balade Parisienne Activity Tracker

Nevo Balade ParisienneThe Nevo Balade Parisienne is one of a few ‘stylish’ activity trackers that I will be quickly looking at this year.

It is NOT a sports device. So stop reading now if that’s your thing.

Such ‘stylish’ devices as the Nevo Balade mark a very significant part of the wareables market and its future.

Many of the ‘uglier band-trackers’ will soon be a thing of the past as their novelty wears off.

The prettier watches, like the NEVO, can just be fairly straightforward activity trackers or like the TAG Heuer can be quite complex Android-Wear/wear 2.0 graphical devices.

The Nevo’s basic feature set is: steps/calories, sleep, smart notifications, iOS/Android app.

Positives: This is a well-packaged and well-crafted device. I would say it was fairly stylish and contemporary in its looks, some might say minimalistic (I wouldn’t). All the materials are of a high standard including the metal case and real leather strap.

The coin battery (CR2032) should last 3-6 months and a spare is included as is a circular black device for removing the rear casing yourself.

Along with a vibration function, the LEDs underneath the watch face shine though in various colours depending on the kind of notification received on your phone. For example, RED is a voice call and GREEN is a SMS/TEXT. You can’t see the content of the notification – that’s on your phone.

Nevo Balade Parisienne

The app is basic but then this device is probably appealing to someone who wants a touch of style and not voluminous pages of activity graphs.

It nicely covers distance, steps (vs goal) and calories for the day and trends over time. For sleep monitoring you get a similar data presentation with deep/light sleep. I only had about 4 days of casual use with the Nevo. Cursory accuracy checks against other trackers put the Nevo ‘in the right place’. It seems consistent too in that accuracy.

I quite liked the idea of being able to press a button on the watch whilst my smartphone/ipad took a selfie. Is there a way of doing this without either having 3 hands or taking the watch off??

Negatives: The quick start guide and iOS app contain basic spelling mistakes. Whilst that doesn’t bother me in itself, it shows a worrying lack of attention to detail.

To be fair, the device itself seems to have a GOOD attention to detail.

I was unable to pair the device with Android 4.3 (a problem which very many other manufacturers have) but iOS was fine (if you use an iPAD you might have to pretend it’s an iPhone in the AppStore to find the app). 2 newer Android devices (v4.4 and v5) were both fine.

Alternatives: Several now, many later – from Withings to TAG and even Garmin have entered the fray.

Comments:

The watch arrives with half of the strap not connected. It’s not a problem at all, just a bit unusual. The part that needs attaching has a special clip which works easily and well (see images below).

This device is NOT Android-wear and so the watch face is a ‘regular’ watch face (with a sort-of Swiss movement, made in China) not a pixelated screen.

The quick-start manual goes into a bit of detail in a very perfunctory way. Concise and to the point. Nice.

I was under the impression that Nevo were intending to introduce other functionality such as solar charging, links to other fitness apps and activity-type detection – such functionality is probably destined for other models.

Price:

For the functionality, the price of this device is high.

*However* you are really paying for aesthetics that contain smart functionality. I’m not sure how much YOU would pay for the NEVO brand and this device’s aesthetics but I suspect that many would pay even more if it had the ARMANI logo instead. So it’s all about branding and image.

If you like the look of it and the basic, but smart, feature-set and you can afford it then buy one. I liked it. It looked smart and worked.

Disclaimer: I was sent this as a freebie. I probably won’t use it myself (if I do I will go and buy one like I do with all the gadgets I actively use) although it may appear in photos against other devices from time-to-time in reviews. It’s unlikely, in a nice way!!!, that I will review any items from this supplier again so hopefully my review is unbiased.

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