Four Stars Off 843 Customer Reviews – Mr. Popular?
PRODUCT: Omron HR-100C Heart Rate Monitor, With Chest Strap, With Backlight
Holy molly there is a lot of chit chat about this watch on Amazon. 13% of the reviews were 1 star ratings. 73% were either 4 or 5 star ratings. Still, 13% 1 star is concerning to me – even though I know people expect more than what they paid for there is something more going on with this watch. With the bit of experience I have reading through these heart rate monitor reviews I can tell you that people expect the world but only want to pay for a grain of sand (is that even a saying or did I just make that up?).
What I mean is this monitor is $33. It’s a budget heart rate monitor. When I buy a watch like this I expect to wear it and tear it for 6 months then rinse and repeat with a brand new one. Now if I spent $200 plus I would expect a great deal more. Probably about 6 times more since that is the ration of prices. But that’s just me.
To conclude my little rant I would like to rant some more about the star ratings on Amazon. This great a range from many 5 star to many 1 star does not surprise me with a $33 watch. You have people who expect more than what they paid for and are not happy about it. And you have defective watches.
Warning! Talk About The Shady Manufacturing Business of Heart Rate Monitors
Omron probably buys their watches bulk (were talking 20,000 – 50,000 at a time) from China paying about $3 per watch (here’s one manufacturer selling bulk for $11 per, here’s another for $8 per) Omron pay’s much less because they buy many more than the 500 pieces those manufacturers are charging at. After minor additional quality checks out of the manufacturing box they ship them at a known (speculation here folks) defective watch rate of around 10%. It makes business sense to do this people. Of those unfortunate 7-10% that receive varying degrees of defection in their watches, maybe 25% actually return the watch. So Omron plays the number game and knowingly ships defective watches because they save money on time saved not doing proper quality assurance over the life span of their business.
I should probably do a documentary movie on this stuff. But the sad thing is this sort of thing is already out in the open. Omron and the other major monitoring companies would never admit it but that is what is happening. I have vast experience with manufacturing engineering and process so I am making a knowledgable guess. But to me, it’s obvious why this watch has such a big range of 1 star and 5 star reviews on Amazon.
This Watch is Omron’s Answer To The Bestselling Timex
Keywords from Amazon Reviews:
- “I’ve had an Omron HRM for 3 yrs. and it has performed superbly, accurately and is more reliable than peer products from Timex, Polar, and Garmin. From Robert T. Hill.
- “[…] Occasionally the monitor does not immediately pick up an accurate rate when first put on – but after a few seconds you are ready to go. I will be ordering another for my mother. Excellent product for price. From A. Forbus.
- “[…] it gave very weird readings, when it gave any.” From Thomas Flagg.
- “If there are other users w/ heart rate monitors in the vicinity, their readings and my readings overlap causing some amount of confusion.” From nwall.
So I’m sitting there trying to think how I can help you decide to buy either the Omron for $33 or the Timex for $39. Same watch features (except Timex is also water resistant) and they look pretty similar. I mean it’s a watch how different can you make two watches look?
They both have 4 star ratings off hundreds of reviews and they are the number 1 and number 2 selling heart rate monitors on Amazon. Nothing in this price range comes up on Amazon until sixth bestseller which is the model down Timex for $5 cheaper at $35.
So it’s obvious: Pick what brand you want. Pick Timex watch if you drive a Holden, Ford or Dodge and pick Omron watch if you drive a Honda or Mitsubishi. Pick the Timex if you own a PC, pick Omron if you own a Mac. Their I made your decision for you. The watches are going to perform exactly the same 90% of the time. It really just comes down to which brand you would prefer to display on your wrist.
- Stop watch
- 1 year warranty
- Omron logo
In the box:
- 1 Omron HR-100C heart rate monitor
- 1 Chest strap
- 1 watch carrying case (not sure why your wrist doesn’t suffice?)