Several people on one of the teams found this post helpful, so I've decided to repost it as a blog for those who may be undecided about the Spark Tracker.
I got the Spark Tacker a few days ago and thought I would give a (not so) quick review.
What I Like:
1) It is very small, thin and light
2) The clip on the back is solid and tight, I don't worry about it coming loose and falling off.
3) It syncs your data whenever you are within 50 ft of your computer as long as the computer is turned on and "awake"
4) You can set your food tracker to coordinate with the information from your Spark Tracker so it reflects the calories you can eat to achieve your goal.
5) there is a help forum on the Spark Activity Tracker Team that is monitored by the Spark coach and tecs. They answer questions and give help very quickly. I posted a question at 8 last night and it was answered by a coach within minutes. They also take suggestions for improvement and implement them if possible.
6) It is water proof. Although they state it doesn't track swimming, one user said she clipped it to the top of her suit in her swimming aerobics class and it tracked, but gave the workout the wrong classification. Which brings me to #7
7) you can reclassify your workout if the tracker labels it wrong. For example one user was on the elliptical and the tracker recorded it as a exercise bike, which has a lower calorie burn. She was able to reclassify it to elliptical and the calories were automatically readjusted. Very cool.
Not So Great
1) For best accuracy, it is very particular on how you wear it. You will get readings no matter where you wear it, but you will get quite a variance if you don't follow the guidelines. For example, you get the best reading wearing it on the top of your shoe, but it must be clipped to your laces securely with the opening of the clip facing toward the toe and not allowed to flop at all. If you wear it on your waist it should be with the logo on the outside, the clip facing down and as close to the outside of your hip as possible. There are specific directions on this on the Tracker Forum.
2) It classifies a "workout" as 10 continuous minutes of movement. If you are doing a 10 minute workout and stop 10 - 15 seconds midway to catch your breath, it will record your steps but not recognize it as a "workout". If you are doing a 30 minute workout and stop halfway for a drink of water or a quick breather, it will record it as 2 fifteen minute workouts.
3) it does not show you your steps unless you sync it to your computer. It does have lights that light up briefly when you tap it to show progress (each light represents 500 steps, but you can change this) but I find that confusing.
4) This one may be just my computer but when my tracker syncs with my computer the new results don't show up on my spark page until I refresh the page or leave that page, go to another and come back. It seems it should just change as soon as the upload is complete.
My Humble Opinion:
I like the Spark Tracker and am glad I bought it. I have never been one to use a pedometer, but I wear this one daily and getting the results of my day posted on my start page keeps me motivated, not only to move more but to maintain an all around healthier lifestyle.
Please Note! if you start comparing the steps recorded with other devices you have been using (Fit Bit, etc) there will be differences. None of these devices are perfect. Don't drive yourself crazy, just pick one device and stick with it. The important thing is that we keep moving!