Polar launches Verity Sense – an optical HR strap you can wear (nearly) anywhere

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Polar has added to its heart rate monitor line-up with the all-new Verity Sense.

The Polar Verity Sense moves away from the standard EKG chest strap used by the current H9, H10 and OH1 devices to use an optical sensor that’s designed to be placed (nearly) anywhere on the body.

Polar says you can attach the Verity Sense on the arm, leg or even the temple – making it more versatile than a standard chest strap or wrist-based sensor. It also just has one button to start tracking activity.

It’s especially aimed at swimmers and can be clipped to goggles to measure heart rate, distance and pace from the head.

As we’ve long reported, the wrist isn’t a great place to measure heart rate – especially if you’re bending or flexing it during exercise.

Polar launches Verity Sense – an optical HR strap you can wear (nearly) anywhere

Boxers, swimmers, Crossfitters will all suffer inaccuracy and noise from the wrist, caused by excessive movement and flexing of the joint that inhibits the light signal from the optical sensor.

That’s meant the natural alternative has been the chest strap, but these can be uncomfortable to wear, require wetting for a good connection and fiddling around under your top.

The Verity Sense boasts 20 hours of battery life and can record 600 hours of workout data between syncs. That means you can workout without a smartphone or sports watch, and download the data when you get back.

If you want to pair the device with a wearable that’s no problem – it supports both ANT+ and Bluetooth.

Obvious competitors are the Wahoo Tickr Fit and Scosche Rhythm+ 2 – both of which use optical sensors and can be placed on the upper arm. However, the Polar has swimming smarts up its sleeve.

The Polar Verity Sense is available now, and costs $79.99.

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