A look at AmpStrip–the really cool heart rate sticker & activity tracker

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Yesterday I got the chance to catch-up with FitLinxx, which is making the AmpStrip sticker that does 24×7 heart rate monitoring, step tracking, sleep tracking and even body temperature.  But wait, I realize you’re probably still back on the ‘sticker’ part.

Yes, seriously, a sticker.  The sticker simply attaches to your chest, roughly over your rib cage.  The sticker has basically two portions.  The first is the electrode piece that attaches to your skin.  While the second is the ‘brains’ of the unit that attaches to the first piece and contains the ultra-small battery Bluetooth Smart communication stack.

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Despite being super-thin, the unit packs a battery that can last up to 7 days before it needs to be charged.  At that point you take the second portion of the unit and simply lie it on the wireless charger to top back up the battery.  If you look at the black portion of the sticker, one side holds the battery while the other side holds the communications and accelerometer pieces.

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Meanwhile, the first sticker portion (seen white above) that was attached to your body gets tossed.  The complete sticker system is designed as fully waterproof, and can even be used within swimming.  It’s unclear however if it’ll work well on those crazy plummeting water slides that make you scream like a little child (but if it does…it’ll capture just how scared you really were!).

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Now the cool part is all the data you get.  The unit quietly tracks your heart rate, body temperature, steps and sleep in the background.   It also sorts out your resting heart rate and will automatically track heart rate recovery as well within the app.  In this background 24×7 tracking mode it caches everything within the sticker itself and then periodically and automatically uploads the data to their app via Bluetooth Smart.  The app as pictured below is their non-beautified prototype app, but it’ll get a makeover by launch.

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The cool part though is that the system is not proprietary.  To begin it’ll take all the heart rate/step/sleep/etc data and will pipe it to Apple Health (with them also working on Android’s Google Fit too).  So your data isn’t islanded in just their app.

More importantly (and of more interest to endurance athletes) is that it also transmits your heart rate over Bluetooth Smart in the standard Bluetooth Smart Heart Rate device profile.  This means that you can pair it to any one of hundreds of apps out there as well as any Bluetooth Smart sensor capable devices like a TomTom watch, as well as newer Polar or Suunto devices.  Here it is paired to MapMyRun:

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Note that the device at this time does not transmit via ANT+ concurrently like some other sensors on the market.  As such, it would not pair to a Garmin device (which only uses ANT+ for sensor data), nor to older Suunto devices prior to the Ambit3.

As for the measurement, since the device isn’t doing optical HR, it’s actually fully capable of transmitting accurate heart rate variability (HRV/RR) metrics to compatible devices.  This allows some of these apps and devices to sort out heart rate recovery related analysis pieces.

The whole package costs $150US at retail once available later this spring, but it’s available on Indiegogo right now for $120US.  Best of all the unit includes a mind-boggling 30 stickers with it.  And, when you need more stickers – it’s only $1 per sticker, with each one lasting 3-7 days.  Pretty sweet stuff!

Thanks for reading, and if you have any questions feel free to drop them below in the comments section.

Welcome to CES 2015! Don’t forget to check out all my CES 2015 coverage, as well as my continual updates throughout the day on Twitter.  It’s gonna be a crazy busy week!

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140 Comments

  1. Fabio

    Is it just me or anyone else thought that it was an Oakley product?

    Pretty cool device tho.

  2. jason K

    I’d totally be on board if I could pair it with my Garmin

  3. Rodrigo Valle Teixeira

    Why, oh why…. doesn’t it have a dual-mode Ant+/BT chip?….
    This would be awsome for all those Garmin users who dislike chest straps…

    • Good point, I’ll bring it up to them today. Depending on what chipset they’re using, many are dual these days.

    • Maybe even a setting in the app to turn ANT+ on/off if battery life was the issue.

    • blondin

      I am sorry, but why Garmin is not offering Bluetooth smart instead?
      Their watches already use bluetooth to communicate with smartphone. Considering the issue of battery life, I think that a watch tha would be dual-protocol is more logical than the reverse. Suunto and Polar are using Bluetooth, why not Garmin?

      True also for Polar, such a pain to find compatible bike product while so many thnigs already exist using Ant+

    • Greg

      Cause garmin hardware I find sux with bluetooth, especially if you are non IOS. All of my friends have issues with connect syncing to vivosmarts and GPS watches, while the notifications on android (with non galaxy phones) barely work. Everyone else got it to work, but garmin didn’t and so extending to Bluetooth smart would just be worse.

      Bluetooth with android is my biggest beaf with garmin.

    • I found this reply under their comments…

      Doug McClure
      7 days ago
      @dscheibel : Thanks for asking about Ant+. We like those watches too, but can’t get Ant+ into this round of the product. It is something we will revisit after we ship this version.

      I see they are announcing stretch goals on Friday, hopefully they’ll add it then.

    • Honestly, it’s really more of a Bluetooth on Android than Bluetooth on Android with Garmin that’s the issue. It’s still a mess for companies to get working right as the stack still varies by phone/model/etc… It’s getting better, but it’s hardly all butterflies and roses.

    • Francis C

      Same boat here Ray. Until garmin adapts to BT I’m stuck with ant+. Thanks for blogging about this.

    • Dustin

      Because Bluetooth smart isn’t really all that smart, Ant+ is much more versatile. Once you have a Bluetooth smart device connected to your phone, that’s it no other BLE devices will connect. Connect your Garmin, and this wouldn’t connect to your phone, connect this to your Garmin and your BLE cadence and speed senor can’t connect. Ant let’s things be clients and servers at the same time and allows many connections. The question should be why don’t the phone manufactures and app developers give more attention to Ant+

    • Jake

      Are you saying that if I have a BT Smart HRM synced to my iPhone I can’t simultaneously have a BT Smart Speed/Cadence sensor synced to my iPhone?

      If so, you’re either incorrect or my iPhone is pretending to connect to both every other morning or so.

    • I agree. With devices offering a choice of Bluetooth smart or ANT+, like the Kickr, I find ANT+ more stable with apps. ANT+ pairing with multiple devices is a huge bonus.

    • John

      @Jake: He’s saying that if you have a BT Smart HRM synced to your iPhone you can’t simultaneously have that same BT Smart HRM synced to another BTLE head unit (bike computer, triathlete watch, etc.)

      (Righteous indignation works best when you have your facts straight. ;-)

    • To what extent is this issue (connections to multiple head unit) related to android rather than to BTLE. If I understand correctly, the Polar H7 can be set up to be viewed by other products when connected to the V800. Correct?

      And I find quite surprising that people continue to claim that BLTE is so bad compared to ANT+ when so many people using garmin complain about the lack of HRM when swimming. A solution exist with Sunnto and Polar using BLTE. So maybe BLTE has also some advantages. And definitely, a watch using both protocol would be the easiest answer. Considering the price of a powermeter, I perfectly understand why people don’t want to change to a new system. But let’s face the truth: BLTE is not a temporary format, or at least will not remain as confidential as WIND.
      So the brand should be more opened and offer both protocols. I don’t understand what are their interests to keep only one format.

    • @fab With my testing (M400, not V800) the H7 can only be actively be paired with one device. Means… the heart rate is transmitted over BLE, only to one device.

      You can set up, that the “old analog signal” will be transmitted at the same time, but for that you need “old devices” (like gym machines), which are capable of this signal.

      That’s a huge drawback of BLE. :-/

    • Thanks Boris,

      According to the manual (V800 and M400), you can make the HR visible by other devices (Settings/SportProfile/Running/HRsettings/HRvisibletootherdevice:Choose On).

      Never tested because my android phone don’t support BTLE, I imagine that it allow other units such as phone or Bike computer to have access to the HR, right?
      Or do you mean that the “second” signal is not a BTLE one? It would be surprising (and stupid) since not a lot of device are using this old protocol. If yes, do you what is the format of this old signal? Because the H7 never synchronised with my RC3 for example.

    • @fab

      “Never tested because my android phone don’t support BTLE, I imagine that it allow other units such as phone or Bike computer to have access to the HR, right?”

      Would be nice. I’ve tested it with several devices… for me it does not work. I only can transmit one BLE signal to one device (watch, smartphone, PM5…).

      “Or do you mean that the “second” signal is not a BTLE one?”

      Right, that’s what I meant. The H7 transmits to signals; BLE and analog. The on/off option is for the analog part.

    • @fab

      This can’t work.… AFAIR the RCX3 is W.I.N.D only, but the H7 is BLE and analog.
      E.g. RCX5 takes W.I.N.D and analog… so signal from H7 is transmitted.

    • Many thanks for your answers. I was not aware of this analog signal.

    • Big Pete

      But what about BT enabled watches like the 920xt and Fenix? Is there a reason why it wouldnt work there?

    • @Big Pete

      Ray Maker wrote: “More importantly (and of more interest to endurance athletes) is that it also transmits your heart rate over Bluetooth Smart in the standard Bluetooth Smart Heart Rate device profile. This means that you can pair it to any one of hundreds of apps out there as well as any Bluetooth Smart sensor capable devices like a TomTom watch, as well as newer Polar or Suunto devices.”

      Does answer you question?

    • “And I find quite surprising that people continue to claim that BLTE is so bad compared to ANT+ when so many people using garmin complain about the lack of HRM when swimming. A solution exist with Sunnto and Polar using BLTE. So maybe BLTE has also some advantages.”

      The Suunto/Polar solutions that use BTLE have nothing to do with BTLE when it comes to swimming. In the case of Suunto, they don’t transmit underwater – it just caches it for later access. The same can be done with ANT+, should a company do so.

      In the case of Polar, they use a legacy analog signal underwater, not BTLE.

      Neither ANT+ or BLE will transmit more than about an inch underwater.

  4. Scott E

    You should have saved this for the April Fools addition of DCR. Sounds a little to good to be true – open system, non-proprietary, works with most devices, reasonably priced, more comfortable than a HR strap….and does even look like a Nike or Oakley product.

    Looking forward to the hands on review!

  5. Neil

    This looks like a great idea. However, I’m not in for the 24×7 thing, but could see myself using this for runs. However, I would burn through stickers quite quickly. The lack of Ant+ would rule it out of use with many of the current GPS watches too.

  6. AECSUSN

    I agree with the two above…I wish it was ANT+

  7. Jeremy

    Haha, I agree that it looks like the Oakley logo. I like the added sensor data. Hopefully it will be ANT+ in the release.

  8. Has anyone discussed latex or adhesive allergies with them? Could be a significant issue for a certain percentage of the population…

    • ThorR

      My first thought too. I could probably handle a sticker on my skin for 48 hours but not a whole week.

    • Simone

      They have this posted in the FAQ

      Will the AmpStrip cause any skin sensitivity?

      The AmpStrip uses a hypoallergenic medical-grade adhesive that has been tested on large populations and therefore should not cause any issues. Some very small percentage of the population may develop a reaction and/or the skin may be slightly sensitive after removing the device (Just like a Band-Aid®).

    • @Simone, thanks, didn’t see that. I’d probably have an issue with it, because every time I donate blood, the adhesive on the pressure bandages gives me localized hives for a few days. Oh well.

  9. Aaron

    The biggest drawback to me is the size of the wireless charger. Not a deal-breaker, but it seems really large for such a relatively small device. I’d hate to have to pack that in my bag just to charge the tracker once or twice during a business trip.

    • Neil

      Doesn’t look much bigger than a Qi charger I use for my Nexus. It was be truly awesome if they used the same tech as that, so I could share! :)

  10. Ekutter

    I’d buy it in a heartbeat if it lives up to its claims. I’d even pay extra for Ant+

  11. russg

    Looking forward to receiving the AmpStrip in June.

  12. Ian S

    Looks great, but as everyone has said it needs Ant+.

  13. maarten

    Can it be worn anywhere on the body?
    Why be stuck on 2.4 GHz transmission and not include a frequency that has transmission through water? Imagine what two patches could do to capture motion…. COOL stuff.

  14. Sebastian

    I sweat like a monkey, buckets of sweat, will those stickers hold, or this is more for light day use at work or when sleeping? This is my light session result: link to instagram.com :) Idea is really awesome.

    • Bruce Burkhalter

      Looks like my floor! Have you found a good solution to keeping sweat out of your eyes? I have tried a bunch (sweat bands, GUTR, etc.) and nothing works well enough. Century rides on a hot day are rough.

    • Gary Dunn

      I apply Body Glide to my forehead. One line inverted “V”. This directs sweat to side. Also trim eyebrows, long hairs direct sweat into eyes.

    • trickycoolj

      Have you tried a Buff? I wear them under both my bike and snow helmets and while running or sweat just streams down my forehead mixed with sunscreen and burns my contact lenses. I have long hair too so it helps keep flyaway hair out of my face. Most headbands/sweat bands always pop off my head but Buffs seem to stay put well.

    • Bruce Burkhalter

      @Gary – Ordered some. Will see how it works.

      @ trickycoolj – Haven’t tried them. Usually with headbands like that they get saturated after a while and then the sweat comes out of them onto my eyes. Does that happen to you?

    • Picko

      I also sweat like crazy on the bike. Have you tried the Halo headband? It has a horizontal rubber strip which sits against your forehead and makes the sweat run sideways across the strip and then down the sides of your face instead of straight down. Had one for about a year and it works well for me. Fits fine underneath a helmet

    • Thanks for this discussion everyone! I also suffer the painful sweat in eyes while running, and if cycling getting to a break and looking like a salt pan. Bonus point for running/riding towards the sun while this is happening. Going to try the Bodyglide and Halo tips.

  15. Luke

    I would like to take a moment and clarify that this device cannot accurately measure body temperature in its current form. It measures skin temperature which does not correlate body temperature, especially in exercising individuals. Currently the only methods that are valid for measuring body temperature in exercising individuals are esophageal, rectal or gastrointestinal. Needless to say these are all invasive measures well beyond the scope of this product.

  16. Greg

    Should be dual ant+/bluetooth or this wont go anywhere with serious athletes who most likely have watches/devices that only handle ant+.

    You cant even use this with a garmin edge 1000 as that doesnt support bluetooth smart.

    Seems like a great idea for triathletes and racers, but the average user may not want a sticky thing on his body all the time. I prefer the mio link approach instead

  17. Federico

    It would be really awesome to have it ANT+ and also an optional chest strap for those who doesn’t want to wear it 24/7.

  18. nnkns

    I don’t like the fact they want me to keep on paying for stickers after my initial purchase (and after the 30 pieces run out). It’s like some sort of subscription if I want to keep using them, no matter that they are cheap or not.

  19. MikeDozer

    Ehhhi am waiting for times, where i can have it under my skin ;P

  20. i like this idea a lot. Ray linked something simillar a couple weeks ago. well simillar sticker technology.

    link to indiegogo.com

  21. Frank Cundiff

    Will there be an app that will work with a windows phone? Would be pretty awesome (for those that have windows phones).

    Thanks

  22. 2bikes

    For a sticker based solution, it is not bringing anything new to the table.
    From an athlete perspective, it is interesting to see that a sticker based solution such as ECHO H2 (link to indiegogo.com) is not getting as much support as AmpStrip.

    • Fabio

      That’s some serious technology in a very cheap package. Considering the BSX lactate meter is about $350 that’s a dramatic price drop. I’m a bit skeptical. I wonder if everything will work properly. However for $90 I’ll probably back it up.
      Hoping to see Ray’s input on that.

    • Fabio

      edit: sorry hit enter before finishing….

      PS: If the device works as advertised, combined with Garmin’s Connect IQ it has huge potential. Ordinary athletes, will have the power to get pro level data at very reasonable prices. Data, once only available in training centres at (usually) big bucks.
      That will be a turning point since pretty relevant data can be gathered “in situ”, more frequently, and analysed remotely by our coaches.

    • Chris

      Seems like they are promising a lot in a small package. I wonder how it tracks your heart rate since it can be placed in very different places on your body.

    • Matt Matera (FitLinxx)

      Chris,
      We recommend wearing the AmpStrip on the left side of the torso, under the pectoral muscle. For women, it should be positioned just below the sports bra.

  23. Steve K.

    I like the idea. Especially 24/7 tracking is nice if you want to really get resting heart rate and sleep tracking. $1 replacement cost for the sticker can add up though. That would surely have to come down but I can imagine that it will. If it is $1 now, maybe you can buy a pack of 100 for 39.99 in the future$. Considering that today you have to replace your strap about once a year or so (when they get icky and/or start to malfunction) and no longer have to worry about rinsing and washing your strap = peace of mind = ease of use.

  24. Brent

    In terms of swimming use, does it store data for later upload? Or would you have to wear a Bluetooth Smart device that records as well? I am still somewhat underwhelmed by the heart rate for swimming options. Those damn straps never stay on. Something that measured and recorded heart rate while swimming would be much more interesting to me.

    • MH

      Interesting question; it looks like it could be possible to record a swim session on-device and download it later, as Ray wrote:
      ..”In this background 24×7 tracking mode it caches everything within the sticker itself and then periodically and automatically uploads the data to their app..”,

      but is that 24×7 tracking mode the same as the mode you would use during training? And how often is periodically? Every 2 hours would work, but not every 10 minutes.

      And as someone wrote, it is not too big a step to implanting such a device under the skin. The technology is available, there are medical devices (for example electro stimulators for people with chronic pain) that are charged wirelessly through the skin and are programmable via a phone app. Personally I see too many opportunities for things to fail or get abused to ever using such technology myself (unless medically unavoidable).

      For the time being, for swimming, I’ll stick to the trusted combo of a Scosche Rhythm optical sensor worn close to a Garmin Fenix (or any other ANT+ watch), it works very well.

      Speaking of ANT+, it would be great if they’d add that.

    • Craig

      Hi MH,
      I am interested in getting a Scosche Rhythm+ heart rate monitor. Just wondering if you have had any issues using yours in the pool as it only has 1m waterproof / sweat proof documented? How long have you been using it like this for? I am mainly after one due to not having much luck with the Garmin chest strap and dropouts in lots of different scenarios during runs and rides.

  25. it states it stores the data for upload later.

    as for replacing HR straps once a year, that sounds not normal. i log 300-400 hours a year cycling and running and had to replace my HR strap, not the actual monitor, once in 10 years.

    • John

      Wow… What HR monitor and straps do you use? I’ve killed about one ANT+ strap per year (Garmin type), albeit with about 1000hours. Given the cost of the Garmin straps, if these stickers last 7 days each, then my expenditure wouldn’t be so different!

    • standard garmin one. just recently picked up a Wahoo one.

  26. Marco

    Looks a bit like a colostomy …

  27. Leobip

    Hello everyone….
    It’s bluetooth smart…. Right? Can Connect with a fénix 3…. Fr920 xt ?

    Thanks……

  28. I love this idea, but I think an improvement would be to have users apply a polymer type liquid adhesive to the device and then stick it to themselves. I’m thinking of that sticky stuff that the is applied to a credit card and then stuck to paper before mailing. Roll-on, squeeze tube, bottle and brush… I would think that would be more perfered to a sticker.

  29. dennis

    Can connect with the Forerunner 620?

  30. Joel Reeves

    This same company FitLinxx, sells a computer system / online service tied to strength training equipment, you log into each apparatus and it helps you set position and weight settings and then keeps track of your sets and reps. Meet your goal and it will suggest a higher weight next session, fail miserably and it will suggest something lower. Everything is recorded to their web site and you get monthly reports. It eliminates the need for very good memory or a clipboard for a strength training workout. I can see the new device adding to the experience and applaud them for going open system on this. Fairfax County Virginia Rec Centers currently offer FitLinxx. No additional cost to gym members.

    • JimH23

      Our local YMCA in California also has the fitlinxx system as part of their membership. They even did a “Lazy Man IronMan” and everything (except the swim) was tracked by logging into the treadmills and bikes. You had to manually enter your swim meters.

      When I used the system it was before I had a gps enabled watch for data so I didn’t pay attention to whether or not any of the information was exportable. I do recall their web interface was kind of lacking though.

  31. Tomasz

    Will it really stick to your body when running, swimming or sleeping 24×7? Does it have a kind glue sensors or what?

    • Colin Neale (FitLinxx)

      Tomasz, it really does stick to your body through all those activities.

      We use adhesive strips which last up to 7 days to connect, the competitor package comes with 3-6 months supply of adhesives.

  32. Benedikt

    I didn’t read all 50 comments, but:
    What would “The Girl” say if you stick them onto you for 7 days? My would rip it off. Going through my spine and the heart, out of my left eye and down to my chest. Especially if i would log my HR while being intimate :D

    I see a big market outside of the runners world:
    There are a lot people doing bodyweight exercises now. I for myself also. When i do a workout outside, i track the runs with my Fenix 2 and pause the watch while doing the exercises. This results in Endless recovery times :P. Would be interesting to see all the data used by the coach (i am using the freeletics system).

    The price is so hot that it would be tempting… And the next step would be to buy the next fenix. AAARgh

  33. Picko

    Hi Ray

    Did you get an actual demo of this? Call me a skeptic but I have a rainbow farting pony alarm going off in my head. Similarly to the ECHO, I think it’s a good idea but putting it on indiegogo is a deal breaker for me.

    • Yes, they demo’d it in front of me (inside). The HR displayed on the phone is live from the sticker on one of the employees.

    • Benedikt

      Could you bring me a set? The shipping is a rip of to europe. 39$… And the you have to pay 19% taxes again here in Germany. I think i have to contact american friends. How do you declare goods send for review? Are the customs free if you say you get them for review and send them back? Or do you pay the custom fee up front and get a reimbursement?

    • Colin Neale

      Dear Benedikt,
      For EU orders we will most likely ship from within the EU avoiding that problem

  34. FrostByteVA

    Regarding Third party apps, I’d love to see it work like my Wahoo Ticker in that I just fire up an app (iPhone w/ Strava, TrainerRoad, etc) and it starts using the heart rate data instead of having to bring my strap along.

    Same with offline swimming metrics. If like Wahoo where it would sync once done, it would be nice not carrying a wet band around in my gym bag after a swim.

    I’m not sure that it would be comfortable for a week at a time but if so, $1 a week isn’t bad for the stickers.

    Healthkit’s steps are already broken (a ride using Strava also shows up as steps and floors climbed).

    • Colin Neale (FitLinxx)

      Dear FrostByte VA

      Like the Wahoo Ticker The AmpStrip can store data and is capable of storing up to 24 hours of data to memory so you don’t need to be tethered to your smartphone. It will sync the next time you have your phone with you so you can view your data post-workout in our AmpInsights app

  35. kyle

    I just ordered a Fenix 3 and i hate how Garmin doesnt support BLE sensors. Makes no sense. There really shouldnt be an issue now in 2015.

  36. Trevor

    Ray, have you already met with Basis/Intel? If not, can you pump them for information about their future plans? Are they committed to going forward with the Basis line?

    I ask because their support forum is on fire with unhappy customers who have sent email after email for weeks as well as people wanting returns; their website STILL says mid-December for the update to the Basis Peak that never happened, and their blog hasn’t had anything posted since Nov. 20th. No information/answers at all — just silence.

    Perhaps their Basis development team has been re-assigned to the new MICA project (My Intelligent Communications Accessory)?

    I understand keeping things under wraps so as not to give away your future plans, but keeping everyone in the dark while their customer base is “on fire” doesn’t seem like an effective strategy.

    • BobV190

      I don’t know if the user base is “on fire”.

      Usually those that are satisfied with the product don’t post on the companies user forum, and I am sure they far out number those who aren’t satisfied and lighting up the forum.

      I have had my Peak for two months now and it continues to work great. I too am disappointed that the notifications piece hasn’t been added yet, but I can live without it.

  37. James

    Do you know if the data is compatible with FirstBeat Athlete? Wondering if it records data that would include the R-R variability that FBA uses or not. I have a fair amount invested in that (hardware and software) and it sounds like the data this records should/would work?

  38. Stanislav

    Does it work with Ambit3?

  39. What an interesting idea! My fitbit has slipped off my wrist many a time – this is an interesting way to do it!

  40. Josh

    Ray,
    So this should work with the Fenix 3?
    Thanks!

  41. Benedikt

    Since they are going to ship from the EU for us, i funded one set…

  42. JimH23

    Any ideas how well it would stick in an ocean swim? I imagine I would be prett afraid of losing something like that into the deep blue sea!

    And does it transmit to your watch while under water? Sorry if I overlooked that in the review or comments.

    • Matt Matera (FitLinxx)

      JimH23,
      The AmpStrip has mostly been tested in pool swims, but it has done a few open water swims before it became too cold in the Boston area. Salt water does not seem to affect the adhesives any more or less than chlorinated pool water. The adhesives have tested well in up to 1 hr sessions. But, the more water you throw at it, the shorter the lifespan of each adhesive. Results vary by swimmer.

      Due to the radio interference of water, not many devices will reliably transmit HR data during the swim workout. It is a hard use case we are working on. Our device stores the HR and workout data and then offloads it when it can “see” the phone.

    • Marathon Man

      Matt
      What is the sampling frequency for the heart rate measurement?
      Does the sampling frequency vary throughout the day e.g. during exercise vs sleeping?
      Is that something that the user can define?
      Thanks

    • Matt Matera (FitLinxx)

      The AmpStrip samples the heart rate at 200hz, or 200 times a second. The data is sent to the app every second, so there isn’t any noticeable “lag” when viewing the NOW screen of app live.
      The sampling frequency does not change.
      At this time we are not planning a feature to allow users to modify this frequency,

    • Warren

      It would be interesting to see feedback on the adhesive used with AmpStrip through a +/ – 12 Iron Man Triathlon. Just a thought to the test team, which I am sure they have most probably thought of.

  43. Gert

    Question for the fitlynxx guys … Any news on the ant+ compatibility?

    • Colin Neale (FitLinxx)

      Thanks for asking about Ant+, can’t get Ant+ into this round of the product. It is something we will revisit after we ship this version.

    • @Colin Neale (FitLinxx): I’m also very interested in a BLE/ANT+ AmpStrip Competitor Package with cheap/good shipping rates to Europe (Switzerland).

    • Colin Neale (FitLinxx)

      Thank you Boris.

      We will ship AmpStrips purchased within the EU from our EU offices to minimise shipping and taxes.

      We will of course keep DC Rainmaker and the market up to date with AmpStrip product development.

    • Lisa

      Thanks for the update. Most of us already have ant+ watches and aren’t necessarily ready to upgrade those too. I’m definitely interested in the AmpStrip once it gets Ant+ capability.

    • Backed it but forgot to check if it did ant. Any chance dual ble\ant could be a stretch goal? Seems like the chips exist to go dual without increasing your chip count and guessing lots of people want ant support for their watches. (Plus could make for an interesting connect IQ app of you had constant access to hear rate data)

  44. For those curious, I did actually run with it today on a trail run out in the desert. I tweeted out a few tidbits on it. I’ll try and show a bit on where they are there, later in the week. Overall though – good stuff!

  45. Wonder how this will compare to “ECHO H2: Hydration, Lactic Acid and Glucose Sensor” on Indiegogo link to igg.me
    OK, they are measuring different things but both seem to be based on the idea of sticking a sensor on you to leave on

  46. sygyzy

    Wait, they give you 30 stickers but each one lasts 7 days and can be recharged? Why do you need so many stickers then? Is it because the adhesive wears out from sweat, swimming, etc? It seems like a silly obstacle that, if fixed, could drop this to a $15 product instead of a $150 product.

    • sygyzy

      Edit: I see my mistake now. The reusable part is the brains and the stickers are what you attach and they are disposable. Got it.

  47. Sam's dad

    Ray, will you be testing the sticker to see if it it does indeed last 7 days while running swimming and cycling? A sticker seems like a crazy way to go as I do not believe it will stay stuck once the heat is on and at that point, the unit becomes useless.

  48. David Edwards

    I see that the device will store heart rate data while you are swimming, which is potentially excellent. I would plan to wear a tri-suit or rash vest over it so that it would stick for longer swims or (hopefully) not get lost if it came unstuck. There was a comment about the water being too cold. What would be the minimum temperature at which it would work?

    I wear protective tape for medical reasons which never fails either in water or when I am sweating like a pig – so I don’t see why this should be a problem if they have picked the adhesive carefully for this device
    .

  49. Eric

    Can someone help me out? I like the concept, or at least all of the metrics that are potentially tracked, but have strong doubts on the performance of the adhesive. Maybe it’s just because I sweat a ton but has anyone ever had a band-aid stick for 3 days? I assume 7 is merely a vision. At that timescale, adhesion to skin is probably not what dictates wear time but the loss of dead skin cells. Especially if the sticker acts as a barrier to evaporation (leading to maceration). But maybe skin isn’t shed as quickly in that location as it is in others? I kind of wish they had focused on ant+ functionality with a strap form factor instead of trying to tackle the sticker idea but that appears to be a big differentiator. I suppose if they get the electronics to work, l could add a strap?

    • Eli

      Could always try a bandaid or first aid tape in that location and see how long it stays. This device also has the disadvantage of the adhesive having to support the weight of the device and while I’m sure the device is flexible probably not as flexible as a bandaid. I already backed it without thinking too much about it. This leads to one of the problems of indiegogo in comparison to kickstarter, hard to back out if you thought about the product and don’t think it will work for you.

      Even if it only lasted 3 days, that wouldn’t be that bad if the stickers were really cheap. I do wonder if a conductive adhesive gel (being careful not to cover the middle so it doesn’t short out) would allow the device to stay on for long enough.

    • Eric

      Ok. So I ran an experiment with a strong medical grade adhesive in that location. Allowing for plenty of moisture transport by using a perforated backing, I’ve had no issues after about 2 days which included a 20 mile run and an hour swim. I wasn’t supporting the weight of a device but I don’t expect that to represent all that much of a challenge. Unfortunately tomorrow’s a rest day for me so I can’t beat on it three days in a row. But regardless from what I’ve seen, in that location, if it’s not a complete barrier to water, I would think they could probably find a system that works 3-7 days. So I stand corrected. The human body is so interesting, apparently much different environment there than on the palmer surfaces I’ve worked on. I’ll sign up to back tomorrow.

      And to some degree I expect this kind of “investing” to restrict the ability to change your mind and get out early. As a rule always think the tech through and figure out what you think the challenges are, how difficult they are to address, and how likely the developer is to be able to do it. Kind of similar to rays explanation. After that, don’t bet more than you are willing to lose and just hang in there to see what happens.

    • Juliusz Sompolski

      I’ve been using taping with fysiotape quite a lot in the last few years (mostly around the ankle supporting achilles; at some times also around the shoulder), and the fysiotape would easily stay on me for 4-5 days, sometimes over a week (a barrier to peel it off was usually going to the sauna weekly). So I guess it could work – the AmpStrip has to hold the weight of the device, on the other type a fysiotape is stretched and holds against some tension.

    • Tauna

      I’m certain the medical grade adhesive will work fine. I used to wear an Omnipod insulin pump. The pod adheres to your skin for 3 days use, but could last longer, and is control wirelessly. If I was going to be in the water all day I backed up the adhesive pad with medical grade skin adhesive I got on eBay. Nifty stuff.

  50. Matthieu B

    Ray and all commenters, I am wondering why for hear-rate only (24/7 or at least only resting heart rate measurements) why a smartphone app could not already do this with a BLE strap sensor? I understand this is not super convinient to have a full body strap around your chest 24/7 or during sleep, however the technology is here. There are a lot of smartphone app measuring heart rate with the camera (with the limitations we know), but I could not find an app just measuring RHR with a sensor and consolidating your daily results to track RHR. Of course there are many apps pairing with BLE sensors to run / cycle / etc. but not to just measure one date point, similar to the app using the camera. Do you know any? Would it be possible even to have just 24/7 measurements?

    • Sure, you can use apps today to do this – I’ve done it with the Wahoo Fitness app.

      But ultimately, as you said “I understand this is not super convenient to have a full body strap around your chest 24/7”

      And very few people (my guess is realistically .001% of the population) wants to wear a strap 24×7 for days at a time.

    • Marathon Man

      Is it actually measuring heart rate 24×7 or is it sampling once every X minutes?
      How often does it sample during a training exercise e.g. running vs when you are sleeping etc?

    • Matt Matera (FitLinxx)

      The AmpStrip samples the heart rate at 200hz, or 200 times a second. The data is sent to the app every second, so there isn’t any noticeable “lag” when viewing the NOW screen of app live.
      The sampling frequency does not change.

    • Marathon Man

      Thanks Matt for the prompt response. I had already pre-ordered so that is good to know regarding the sampling. Can’t wait to receive it.

      Another question: it says that the data is stored in internal memory and then transferred to your phone when it is re-detected. Does this still occur if you pair the Ampstrip with a sports watch for a training run / swim? e.g. you get a file stored on your watch that includes the GPS & HR data (exactly the same as the watch works today with a heart rate strap) and then when your phone is re-detected, the HR data from the Ampstrip gets transferred to your app.

      Will you also be able to export the HR data (or portions of it) from your app?

      Thanks.

  51. Ernie

    I have question? How does it know your going for a run vs a power walk? Or Maybe swimming? How does it know what exercise your doing to be input in an excersize app such as run keeper or map my fitness? It sounds super amazing though. Thanks

  52. this guy

    Do you have a good watch recommendation, I’m really excited about the amp strip, I pre ordered one, but now I have to get a new watch. I’m really leaning towards the timex one+. The one thing I do worry about is bluetooth headphones and the amp strip at the same time, should work in theory, but if it actually does is another thing. Any thoughts?

  53. Nick

    I ordered one on indiegogo. Not sure if I will wear it all the time, though. Might be a little awkward for those intimate moments. I am very interested to have not only heart rate (and cached when not near the phone, at that), but also recovery and respiration, as well as sleep tracking. Thanks for the review. It was unclear, however whether you put it on or not.

  54. Ernst

    Any indication they intend to include an option to disable the Bluetooth like an airplane mode? The idea of continuous monitoring is very appealing, but there are some times that you have to turn off Bluetooth. It’d be nice not to have to remove the device, and it’s not clear to me if when removed the Bluetooth times out or keeps trying to communicate to finish transferring stored data. If it’s stuffed in the overhead and your phone is off, how long might it keep trying to find the phone?

  55. Avi

    When I was receiving physio treatment, the physiotherapist put some adhesive on my knee. Next meeting was cancelled, so the taped stayed there for two or three weeks. When I tried to get it off at home, it took with half the skin of my knee.

    Now, I assume the physio’s tape was also “medical grade”, and if I use the AmpStrip I’d want it to stay forever, so I could always be monitored.

    So, I’d pass till I see no reports of skin problems.

    Also, is it transmitting while attached to the body? Radiation?

  56. Stefan

    Hi Ray, are you in contact with the guys from fitlinxx, do you have any news? They planed to start delivering already. But instead gone quiet.

    Thanks as always
    Stefan

  57. Margaret

    I would really love to see an update of your review. I want to order the AmpStrip but want to make sure it’s as accurate as is reasonable re: HR, steps, cals burned, etc.
    Thanks, love your site!
    Margaert

  58. David J

    As the last couple of messages, I’d also really appreciate any update you might have, Ray. You mentioned earlier in a comment you went for a run with it on? Would love to hear feedback!

  59. Elena

    Ray – heaps of thanks for all of your outstanding reviews. I wouldn’t know what to buy without you!

    I’ve been dreaming of the day someone would invent a “patch” style HR sensor. I just hoped it would be compatible w/my Garmin HRM. I hate wearing the strap when I run. Even premium soft strap is never really comfortable for me, perhaps b/c it sits below sports bra. Don’t even get me started on sports bras.
    Anyway, do you think if I took a Garmin soft strap and cut off the fabric-only pieces on each side of the sensor strip, and stuck the sensor strip IN my sports bra (in the back, on the left side say), that it would detect my HR as well as it does when the strap is worn as intended? Sports bras are pretty compressive, so I think it would stay in place. If you’re having trouble picturing this, put on a sports bra, and it’ll make sense ;-)

    thanks!
    Elena

  60. Peter V.

    Ray,

    I contributed to this campaign, but it seems to be dead, no more updates and silence. Do you have more info?

    thanks!
    Peter.

  61. Eric

    +1 on trying to find out what is going on. Fitlinxx will respond to emails but they won’t say anything. No timeline, no excuses, no nothing. I’m hoping someone else acquired them (Garmin!!) and is working on a new release.

  62. the5krunner

    AFAIK it’s cancelled

  63. Brian Dodd

    Is the Garmin Forerunner compatible with Apple Healthkit?

  64. M

    You might want to update this – product has been cancelled and they’re refunding everyone (info is on their site and on their indiegogo). link to indiegogo.com