|HJ-720ITC Pocket Pedometer|
by Omron Healthcare, Inc.
Features: Dual sensors for more accurate step recognition. 7 days of information stored for display, with up to a total of 41 days stored on the unit. Omron Health Management Software included to view distance, calories burned, fat burned, with separate aerobic steps and all sensed steps displayed for more accurate step information.
Official Website: http://www.omronhealthcare.com/
Current Price: Check Price / Purchase
Cons / Disadvantages
- Easy to use
- Dual accelerometer sensors
- Recent 7-day memory for instant recall
- 41 consecutive days of internal memory
- All steps recorded
- Separate aerobic steps recorded and displayed
- Calories burned (kcal) along with grams of fat burned
- Distance measured
- Omron Health Management Software is a simple application and provides a wealth of information for those wanting to track their weight loss program and exercise progress
- Omron Health Management Software allows for an unlimited amount (depending on hard drive space of your PC) of users who can record their own data from using the same HJ-720ITC pedometer
- Accurate considering it's very reasonable price and manual adjustment of stride
- Resets at 12am automatically — needs a manual adjustment for a specific reset hour to cater to different jogger's 24-hour fitness lifestyle
- The belt clip is almost useless, and needs a complete redesign
- The rubber lip which covers the mini-USB port for connecting to your PC is going to break off after a short period of use (probably less than 6 months with repeated use), and needs to be replaced with a more practical sliding cover.
- Why isn't this software available for Mac users?
The Omron HJ-720ITC Pocket Pedometer has been a real asset in looking at my overall exercise progress. I'll be the first one to admit, attempting to remember the amount of time I exercise during the week and then keeping a written record of it, is not my strong point. The HJ-720ITC paired with Omron's software, leaves the number crunching to them, and all I have to do, is get my body moving.
- Integrate Omron's weight scale information into the Omron Health Management Software for viewing not only your pedometer and blood pressure information, but also your weight progress as well
The best part about the HJ-720ITC is I was up and running (literally) within a few minutes. The packaging includes a CR2032 lithium battery, and once installed, I then input my weight and stride length. Once that was finished, I was out the door and the HJ-720ITC began counting my steps (technically, it counted my steps BEFORE I walked out the door).
Accuracy Of The HJ-720ITC
The accuracy of pedometers will always be under a little scrutiny, but I found the Omron HJ-720ITC to be reasonably accurate. The reason for the scrutiny, is because of the stride length. This must be input into any pedometer. The problem with stride length, is that it varies when you exercise. For some people, walking creates a longer stride length, and then jogging makes them condense their stride length. So, to be as accurate as possible, I recommend getting measurements for several strides, and average them. Omron's user manual states to walk 10 steps then measure the length and divide by 10. This is a good suggestion.
Another suggestion I have is to use Google Earth to measure the distance you're walking or jogging, and then compare it to the reported distance from the HJ-720ITC. In my own particular case, I was actually exercising about 3/4 to a 1 mile MORE than what the HJ-720ITC was reporting. However, the HJ-720ITC itself is not to blame. It just gives information based on the information you provide it. So, for me, my strides are apparently more spread apart than what I've input into the HJ-720ITC. Google Earth won't be available for such precise distance measuring in all geographic areas, so try it before you get serious.
If Google Earth is not available to you in your area, then the next best advice I have is to find a High School or College track, where the distance is certain, and you can obtain information from the Phys Ed instructors on how many laps would make 1 mile, half a mile, 5 miles, etc.
A Few Disadvantages...
I did notice a few disadvantages, however, and we'll discuss them. First, is the automatic reset of the HJ-720ITC which will reset all stats to "0" when the clock strikes midnight. For many this could be a nice feature, but for those who want to go on a late night walk and/or jog, it can be problematic. Because your stats for that one fitness event, will be spread across two days.
Second disadvantage is the belt clip design. Whoever designed it must have thought nobody went for a walk or jog outside their home, because this belt clip will easily slip off when you're in the middle of a good walk or run in the great outdoors. What's interesting, is Omron provides a safety strap with string which attaches to the HJ-720ITC and to your clothes, so it's rather obvious this issue has been recognized, but the re-design has been ignored.
The third disadvantage I noticed was the design of the mini-USB cover, which is made of rubber, and I've seen this design on other products, and it is a massive failure. First, the rubber is pivoting strongly when you use your fingers to pop it out of its resting place, so this strain alone is going to make the inferior rubber hinge of the cover crack. If you're a person who's dedicated to monitoring your results...as this device is made for...you're going to be uploading data to your PC almost every day to view your progress. So, what needs to change is this design. A more preferred thin plastic sliding cover would be better. Slide it down for access. Slide it up for protection.
A very important suggestion I hope Omron takes to heart, is integrating their weight scale products into the Omron Health Management Software. OHMS can already track two different products of theirs, and I know a modification of the software and a USB connection to the PC from some of their higher-end weight scales would be completely fantastic. I mean, who doesn't want to track their weight loss? This is very important, and would be highly useful in tracking a person's weight over time.
Omron's HJ-720ITC Pocket Pedometer deserves a Highly Recommended, and would have received a PLUS as well, but there is room for improvement of the HJ-720ITC's firmware and hardware. Still, this is an essential piece of your complete weight loss plan and routine, and for the rather low street price (around $30) you can't go wrong. Even with the disadvantages discussed above, I Highly Recommend the HJ-720ITC. It's advantages highly outweigh the negatives, but Omron should be taking notes so they can release the perfect pedometer.