$500; $560 with HRM
With the launch of the V800 gps integrated triathlon watch, Polar has created perhaps the most technologically advanced unit on the market. Although Polar is still rolling out some of its hardware and software for the watch, the V800 boasts a slew of impressive features. A sleek minimalist design allows it to double as an everyday watch, but the V800 packs so many features and so much data it’s more like a desktop computer.
The unit connects through Bluetooth for sensors and phones. The integrated gps tracks speed, distance and maps your route. A hybrid transmitter reads heart rate even under water (to 30 m). The seamless shifting between swim-bike-run (requiring a light tap to the bottom left button) even records T1 and T2 times as you move through each discipline. The V800 can be used for all three sports separately as well. Of the most useful perks is a feature that tracks all daily activity so you can understand workout and recovery requirements. The unit is linked to Polar’s Smart Coaching features which optimizes training benefits by combining training load with daily activity and personal information such as age and gender, to provide an array of feedback from personalized targets, motivational encouragement, calories burned, to suggested recovery time. Smart Coaching links heart rate monitors to mobile apps and web service.
When training at altitude, the V800’s integrated barometric pressure sensor provides altitude readings. You can store and view up to four weeks of data.
The V800 has two quick and useful built in testing methods to track fitness progression. The Orthostatic test analyzes the effects of overtraining and is based on building a baseline of resting supine followed by standing measurements.
The Fitness Test tells you exactly how your fitness is developing based on HR.
In June, Polar stands to become the first wrist unity to support Bluetooth Smart Cycling Power Meter Sensor (with Keo Look pedals). (It will not, however, connect to any
ant+ power meters). Currently, the V800 connects with the following Bluetooth Smart devices:
Sensor (Stride) Sensor A low-frequency battery will get 13 hours of gps time in one-second recording mode.
The technical platform of Bluetooth and the accelerometer means, in theory, Polar has left themselves a lot of room for upgrading features and functionality.– SZ