CASE STUDY: An Intro – GPS Player Trackers – Do GPS Player trackers really help athletes/players improve?

We at SnappyReviews love playing football – not only for the social aspect but also for keeping fit and staying in shape. We could almost hear the relief from footballers up and down the country when UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson revealed that as a part of the UK’s roadmap out of the restrictions, Outdoor organized sports and activities can return from March 29th, subject to guidance.

Like most footballers at any level, I immediately thought back to the pain of pre-season, having to get into shape, match-fit and sharp before my teams first organized friendly on Friday 16th of April. Previous pre-seasons have been grueling – but how can technology help me get to – or even exceed – previous seasons levels? How can I be at my best going into the season ahead?

I wanted to get hold of a device that could accurately track my distances, sprints and other valuable statistics during pre-season training and games so that I could actively monitor my improvement over the weeks from the beginning of training up until the season start. Statistics don’t lie, especially when built up over a certain period where you have a visual of your performance data. With these criteria set, I searched for performance GPS trackers to help me get the data that I want. I am convinced that as long as I have a refence point for my performance, I can analyze this data to help me improve.

I wanted this case study to cover GPS tracking tech from three different price categories. After some research, I decided on the tech below:

Under £50> Adidas GMR PLYR Pack

Under £100> Zepp Football Tracker

Under £200>  STATSports APEX Athlete Series

I will be posting a full unboxing of each selected tracker, write up and full case study within the next few weeks! Keep up to date with the blog and Insta page for full updates!

Reviewing the new SoundPeats A2 Hybrid TrueWireless Earbuds.

Do SoundsPeats brand new addition to the wireless earbuds market stand out and make a case for a “true” budget option?

I haven’t been surprised at the speed of the SoundPeats brand growth, since panic buying my first pair of SoundPeats TrueWireless earbuds at the beginning of March 2019. I’d been very impressed at not only the sound quality of the buds, but the presentation and packaging is something that most budget brands usually neglect. SoundPeats clearly ensured that the design budget remained healthy. Thankfully, this previously successful model has not changed and SoundPeats have yet again produced a very considerable option to the True Wireless bluetooth earbuds market.

Inside of a very well presented box, you get warranty paperwork (24months worth of warranty), a USB 2.0 to USB 3.0 to provide power to the charging case, the charging case with the two wireless earbuds inside & a few different earbud sizes to ensure that you are comfortable with true earbud seal and to provide that secure hold to make sure that the buds do not fall out. Rule #1 when using any truewireless buds is to make sure that the seal is as good as possible to make sure that the sound does not “escape”. I can’t obviously speak for everyone but the provided replacement buds certainly did the trick for me. 

Bluetooth pairing was very easy – take both buds out of the box and scan for the device on your phone. Done. The well built charging case shows you the remaining charge via the three clear LED’s on the front of the product case. Strangely, SoundPeats claim 30hrs playtime via their website but only 25hrs are shown on the box – either should ensure that you’re good to go whether using the buds to provide the soundtrack to your lockdown walk or helping meet your exercise goals. SoundPeats promise a quicker 10hr charge when using a USB 3.0 to 3.0 charge, this brings the charge time down to 10hrs. The case and buds both take 2hours to fully charge. The buds also feature a IPX6 waterproof rating, so no need to worry about getting caught out in the rain. 

The earbud touch system does take a little bit of getting used to, but with experimentation and little bit of patience, you’ll learn how to flick through the earbud modes – the product manual takes you through all of the controls, but the most anticipated feature for me was the Active Noise Cancelling which I’d rate at 8/10. The feature most certainly makes a difference to filtering out background noise but some louder noises do creep through. Music quality is always the bread and butter for all headphones/earbuds etc and SoundPeats do provide a good quality of sound for a sub £60 price. 

The buds do link to a SoundPeats app which you can control on your Smartphone, but testing the iOS version proved to be disappointing. You can’t proceed without registering for an account but the verification email never came through. I will update this post when testing again, but for now I can only go by the feedback from friends who have also tested this product and the general concensus is that the app “needs some work”.

In Conclusion, SoundPeats have yet again provided a good quality product for a very affordable price. The build of the product is top notch, product is easy enough to use once you’d had a chance to get used to the earbud touch system and the sound quality is very good. You have to consider the price here, these cost a lot less than any leading brand but the SoundPeats T2 TrueWireless earbuds definitely have a crack at attempting to challenge the big boys. Amazon do provide discount codes for these from time to time – so I would put these buds in the category for best truewireless buds available for less than £50.

As these have been so impressive, I will be reviewing these against my Cambridge Audio Melomania Touch wireless earbuds as a quick comparison in the next few weeks.

Score: 8/10.

3 things I like about the product are:

1) Professional styling and packaging

2) Good sound quality 

3) ANC feature works well

3 things that could be improved are:

1) Would be great if the smartphone app was easier to set up.

2) Touch controls could be a little bit more responsive.

3) *No third negative thus far!*

You can buy the SoundPEATS T2 Hybrid Active Noise Canceling Wireless Earbuds by following the link below:

https://amzn.to/3l1fx1O

(Disclaimer: We may make a slight profit from Amazon for any direct sales made from accessing the short link below, but these profits will always be used to promote and improve our website and provide us with new tech to review, to help you and others in the future.)

Doqaus Care 1 -a budget buy must?

We spotted the Doqaus Care 1 headphones on Amazon with generally positive reviews. With the cost of the headphones being set at sub £40, are these a worthy budget buy?

As lockdown has increased the need of a variety of in and outdoor keep-fit activities, the need for fitness tech has also rise . Having movement & heart rate stats is almost essential but having an uplifting soundtrack to keep you going is almost as important. 

Doqaus present their headphones with a USB 2.0 to USB 3.0 charging cable, a protective storage pouch, a 3.5mm to 3.5mm AUX cable and a user manual. The weight and general quality of the headphones is actually quite impressive considering the price. They can fold away very nicely for storage and the over ear cushions feel soft and flexible – the stitching seems secure so the cushion shouldn’t start to come away any time soon. The general build and feel of the headphones is impressive. 

The Bluetooth 5.0 connection and microphone both connected very well during our testing, but as with any sound tech test, we’re especially interested in the sound quality, noise cancelling and the 3 EQ modes. 

Straight away we noticed that the noise cancelling is disappointing over all three EQ modes and over a variety of different music genres. The “heavy bass” mode EQ is too powerful and massively affects the quality of the track. The first and second EQ’s are fine, with the first being a Normal “Local” mode and second being an “Equilibrium” mode that increases treble. We’re not sure about these EQ’s and they could have done with some further refinement. 

The 3 Pros:

  • Decent, solid headphones for less than £40 – reduced further by Amazon vouchers/offers.
  • Doqaus claim over 52 hours playtime.
  • Reliable Bluetooth 5.0 connection and clear microphone when making or receiving calls. 

The 3 Cons:

  • Disappointing EQ Modes
  • Poor noise cancelling
  • Buttons on the side feel a little bit cheap/flimsy, which lets down the all round feel of the product.

One extra special thing that stood out for me was: Build Quality. Solid headphones and well made for the price. 

Score out of 10: 6/10. As mentioned, the build quality is very good but the main thing about a great pair of headphones is the audio quality. The EQ modes and poor noise cancelling bring the score of these headphones down to a 6. Would we take them out on a run or walk? We would, but with the vast amount of budget electronics competitors around, other options may be better placed as a budget headphone choice. 

 You can buy the Doqaus Care 1 headphones by following the link below:

https://amzn.to/3sV9Bdi

(Disclaimer: We may make a slight profit from Amazon for any direct sales made from accessing the short link below, but these profits will always be used to promote and improve our website and provide us with new tech to review, to help you and others in the future.)

~YourReviewTeam

We review Apple’s new pocket personal trainer, Apple Fitness+

Keeping fit and healthy has always been important to our everyday lives & with the Coronavirus pandemic keeping us away from our favourite leisure activities, we’ve seen a boom in fitness apps to help keep us fit at home & from in front of our TV’s & mobile devices. 

On the 14th of December 2020, Apple released their own Fitness+ subscription service which they describe as “the future of fitness”. This service works seamlessly with your Apple iWatch (Series 3 & above), Apple iPad and AppleTV services. I’ve tested the App across all devices over the last 7 days and I have been very impressed indeed!

The videos are easy to follow, trainers are very clear and I love the feature which projects your exercise ring/goals on scene alongside the trainer-led workout. For someone like me, I like to see my workout effort being rewarded & having my exercise ring in front of me at a glance certainly gives me the motivation to push that extra level harder. I especially like that Apple have created a workout library for beginners & during every workout, you have the option to follow one of the trainers who is completing the same workout in a different way. This really opens up the app to a wide range of people – those who are only just starting out to those more experience fitness fanatics. 

I’ve tried Cycling workouts, walks, HIIT, Yoga and a workout that Apple name “Mindful Cooldown”, which helps you unwind and stretch after one of the Fitness+ workouts. Mindful Cooldown is a great idea from Apple – fantastic for pre & post workout & even useful to help loosen up after a day behind the desk in the office. These aside, the fitness app also features many other types of workout suited to your needs. Apple Fitness+ features Workouts that can vary from between 5 minutes all the way through to 45 mins, so the app always features a workout that you can squeeze into any type of day. 

Through every individual workout, the Apple Trainers send the user a message to “close your rings” at the end of the workout, which is a constant message throughout the Fitness+ subscription. If you’re as driven as me to close your Fitness ring, this message certainly hits home. I’ll be reviewing Apple Fitness+ rivals over the coming months as one of our #SnapReviews which are our at a glance reviews to give you an indication of how Fitness+ faces up to its competition. 

The Verdict:

The 3 Pros:

  • Ease of use across all Apple Fitness+ enabled devices.
  • Exercise ring being shown on screen alongside workouts to help motivate Fitness+ users.
  • Motivational trainers who are very easy to understand and follow.

The 3 Cons:

  • It would be great to create custom workouts. 
  • Lack of Kettlebell specific workouts, which are very popular. 
  • You will only get the full experience if you have all of the required Apple devices. 

One extra special thing that stood out for me was: Sign language gestures before and after each workout, which shows that Apple have created a workout app for everyone. 

Score out of 10: 9.5/10. Really impressive and cost effective against rivals Peloton and FIIT. Apple have created a very unique product here. I’d recommend trialling the app via the 30 day free trial if you already own an Apple Watch, or a 3 month trial if you intend to buy a new watch. Remember – you don’t need an Apple Watch to use the service, you can just select and follow the workouts on your iPad/iPhone or AppleTV screen without the fitness metrics. 

~YourReviewTeam