by Michael Crider on
If you want high-speed network access throughout your home and Wi-Fi isn’t cutting it, you’ve probably considered running Ethernet cables. But why not take advantage of the power lines you already have going everywhere?
If you just want to weigh yourself, you can use any old scale on the market. If you want to track your weight and get more detailed health stats, the Eufy BodySense Smart Scale is the way to go.
Eufy, another one of Anker’s sub-brands, produces the BodySense Smart Scale ($39). It pairs with your phone via Bluetooth to track and log all your weigh-ins. On top of this, the app provides some in-depth stats that you don’t normally get from a regular scale. We’re hesitant to call it a necessary part of any fitness or weight loss regimen, but if you want some help keeping track of your weight, it’s a handy upgrade.
When you step on a normal scale, you get a big readout with a number on it that tells you how much you weigh, the end. If you never open the Eufy app on your phone, the BodySense works just like that. This is convenient if you want to share it with members of your family who don’t particularly want or need data tracking.
To track your weight, however, you’ll open the EufyLife app when you weigh yourself. The scale will automatically connect to your phone as long as the app is open and you’re standing on the scale, then upload our current weight. In my experience, this process was frequently buggy, sometimes requiring a restart of my phone to get it to connect. I’ll admit I’ve never had the best luck with Bluetooth devices personally, but this was excessive.
Once your scale pairs and sends the data over, the experience gets a lot nicer. At the very top of the app, you’ll see your most recent weight. Just below that is a chart that tracks your weight over time. If you do nothing else with the scale, this is already more useful than a regular scale. You can use anything from a fitness tracker to a notes app to keep track of your weight over time, but this handles all of that for you. Just remember to open the app when you weigh yourself and you’re good.
If all you wanted was a scale to track your weight, you can do that for half the price. The big reason to buy the Eufy smart scale is for all the extra data you get along with it. When you first set up your scale, you’ll asked to enter your gender, birthday, and height. From this, the scale will automatically calculate some extra information.
That extra data can be both useful and overwhelming. The app will tell you where you land on the Body Mass Index (though it’s worth pointing out this can be a problematic indicator of health), what percent of your weight is body fat, water, and even bone. Have you ever wondered what percent bone you are? I haven’t. But now, thanks to the Eufy BodySense scale, I now know that I am 8.4% bone.
Eufy says my bone weight is high.
As you can imagine, some of this information is just not very helpful. The ability to figure out how much of your body weight is coming from fat versus muscle can be a useful metric if you are trying for specific body goals. However, some of this data can be just noise. I also found that Eufy’s estimates of what’s high to be more than a little judgmental. It gave my current weight of 203.8 its highest rank of “excessive.” Which, first of all, how dare you. Secondly, when the difference between “normal” and “excessive” only spans 25 lbs, it can make it hard to get meaningful information from the app. It’s important to keep in mind when you’re using this app not to get too fixated on specific metrics, but rather look at the information in aggregate and over time.
From that perspective, the BodySense scale can be much more useful than a regular scale. It’s nowhere near an exact science, but if you’re trying to build muscle, it can be helpful to see that your muscle mass is trending upwards while your fat mass is trending down. Just remember these are estimates and not every piece of information is as important as the app makes it sound.
You can also connect the EufyLife app to Google Fit or FitBit to sync that data to other services. This is especially handy if you’re using either of those services as part of a broader health regimen. On its own, information about your weight isn’t too actionable, but pair it with information on your activity or diet and you can get a more complete picture of your health.
The Eufy BodySense smart scale isn’t much more expensive than a normal scale, which is fortunate because it makes it very easy to justify the upsell despite a few flaws. It would be nice if it wasn’t such a crapshoot to get the phone to pair to the scale, but it worked just often enough (and I use it infrequently enough) that this was a minor annoyance, as opposed to the huge hassle it could’ve been.
More importantly, the information is best used with specific goals in mind, rather than using it to give you any guidance on how to tackle your health. A food tracker, for example, can give you an indication when you’re eating too much sodium or too little protein. But all the extra data this smart scale provides will be pretty useless unless you have a plan going in. The data is not accurate enough, and the definition of what’s “normal” is not nuanced enough to gain useful insights about your health alone.
However, if you’re working with a doctor or fitness instructor on a specific goal like losing weight or building muscle, then it can help you keep track of your progress automatically. It smooths the friction of keeping up with all the allegedly important data that fitness trackers tend to bombard you with, and it keeps the most important bits on the surface for easy access. It’s not a revolution, but for only $20 or so more than a comparable, non-smart scale, it’s a fine upgrade that makes keeping track of your weight and body changes over time a snap.
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