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WHOOP 4.0 has changed…a lot…here’s how
Most existing WHOOP subscribers will today be eligible for a free upgrade to the latest Gen 4.0 strap just announced by WHOOP. If you are a founder member, check the details further below you will only get 2 free years of use of a free-to-upgrade WHOOP 4.0.
This is NOT a review of WHOOP 4.0, today we just get to see the new tech for the first time. I’ll go through all the changes, below, and add some comments.
WHOOP 4.0 – What’s New?
It’s a new strap that starts shipping free to existing members on September 27. Reserve yours now. (link wasn’t working at launch)
The WHOOP 4.0 strap is totally changed in all key respects and alongside that, we see a new apparel range that allows WHOOP 4.0 to be worn in a variety of places on the body.
The key takeaways are innovative new tech that is hopefully accurate plus some sports clothing.
Here are the new details
- 33% Smaller: WHOOP 4.0 is 33% smaller than WHOOP 3.0 and claims an improved 4 to 5-day battery life
- new Optical Heart Rate Sensor: The sensor has 5 LEDs (three green, one red, and one infrared) and 4 photodiodes. Couple that with WHOOP’s algorithms and WHOOP claims its accuracy is validated by 3rd party testing.
- Next-Gen Battery: Earlier this year, Sila Nanotech received a huge investment to support the R&D of their new battery that uses silicon-based anodes for the first time in a Li-ion battery. This tech will probably make its way into electric vehicles but WHOOP gets to use it for the first time in their product. The key benefit is that there is a 17% space-saving or, put another way, this almost boosts 4-day battery life to 5-day battery life. Industry players Garmin, Apple and Samsung must be eying this eagerly.
- Battery Pack 4.0: There’s a newly designed battery pack that can charge on the go as well as respond to a tap to show the charge level
- Sleep Coach + Haptic Alerts: Gentle vibrations can wake you up at the right stage of your sleep cycle.
- Pulse Oximeter: Supports blood oxygen calculations (SPO2) to offer new physiology insights
- Skin Temperature Sensor: Temperature is another new metric that can be used to improve health/illness features, menstruation monitoring and sleep stage calculations.
- Health Monitor: Track live heart rate, skin temperature, SpO2, resting heart rate (HRrest), heart rate variability (HRV), and respiratory rate in one view. Copy 30-day or 180-day trends of these metrics to your coach, trainer, PT, or physician
- IP68 & Waterproof to 10m – hmmm. Don’t dive in!
- BLE Support – ANT+ not supported. It’s a Bluetooth Low Energy/SMART sensor.
WHOOP’s Any-Wear clothing range has pouches into which the WHOOP sensor easily slips and reads data from your torso, waist, or calf. The clothing collection includes sports bras, compression tops, leggings, shorts, and athletic boxers which vary in price from $54 to $109.
- Fast Link Slider: This allows bands to be more easily removed, swapped and then for the sensor to be placed in the clothing if desired.
- SuperKnit & HydroKnit Bands: Respectively these are for comfort/durability and a fast-drying version for sport
- Any-Wear Detection: The clothing and WHOOP interact so that WHOOP records the wear-position.
Who Gets a Free Upgrade?
I’ve already successfully completed the upgrade request process – it works.
Existing subscribers can register for the new WHOOP 4.0 and get a free upgrade sent to them later this month.
If you are a founder member it’s different. You should find that your existing WHOOP 3.0 membership is now deactivated in the app. You will need to upgrade to the subscription service and provide valid credit card details. I guess that isn’t what you originally signed up for when you bought your original WHOOP outright but it is what it is. As a sweetener WHOOP gives you free 2-year membership until September 2023. You can upgrade online or through your app where the screen should look like this.
Reserve yours or subscribe: Whoop.com
WHOOP 4.0 Opinion
On the face of it, this looks like a good product upgrade. The new apparel range is a nice-to-have which might improve wearability for some people in some sports but mostly it’s a play for an additional revenue stream.
WHOOP’s app is great and many users love the product and lifestyle it helps promote. The earlier version was never that great as a heart rate monitor during sport and, like all other wrist-based tech, it was prone to significant error on some people. WHOOP recognised that a long time ago and allowed the old product to be worn on the upper arm with a WHOOP ‘sleeve’.
The scope of the sensor package is good and should allow WHOOP to progressively evolve the features in their excellent app to gradually cover more ground in the wellness and sleep spheres. This is more of a catch-up move to offer some of the features already included on Garmin, Apple, Samsung & Google/Fitbit watches.
Athletes should look forward to the integration of strength-based training from the company’s recent acquisition of PUSH. This is the area that promises to move WHOOP ahead of the competition in the sports realm especially because a significant part of its user base comprises non-endurance athletes.
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