At a Glance: Quick Ratings
Heart Rate Functions
Fitness / Sport Features
Ease of Use
Where To Get It
A Deep Dive Into Polar H7
Stop for a minute. If you carry a smartphone with you when you exercise, then LOOK NO FURTHER. This could be the product you have been looking for. The Polar H7provides ECG accurate heart rate data directly to your smartphone.
With dozens of FREE training apps like Polar Beat, Strava and Endomondo you can accurately track time in training zones, max and minimum heart rate and calories burnt, plus lots more (depending on the APP). The Polar H7 Bluetooth heart rate sensor has been reviewed by Tristan Haskins aka CardioCritic
Related Reading: Check out our review of the Alivecor Kardia Mobile ECG monitor. A huge step in technology.
Who Is It For?
What Is It?
Who really wants to wear a chest strap heart rate monitor? If you absolutely demand 99.999% accuracy then a chest strap heart rate sensor is the most accurate system. However, I’d rather have something a little more comfortable. In late 2021 Polar introduced the Polar OH1 (Optical Heart Rate) – an armband style heart rate sensor that can be worn on the upper or lower arm. Heart Rate is accurately acquired from the 6 x LED sensors. This heart rate data is then either BROADCAST to compatible Bluetooth devices or STORED internally for download to Polar Flow at a later time. In this storage mode the Polar OH1 armband HRM sensor can be used as a standalone device recording up to 200 hours of total training data.
If you simply want to record heart rate on your iOs or Android device running your favourite fitness app (Polar Beat, Endomondo, Strava, MapMyRun etc) the Polar OH1 could be just what you’ve been looking for. It can also broadcast HR data to other compatible Bluetooth devices eg. Polar M460, POlar V800, Suunto Spartan (range) etc. Or simply strap it on your arm, turn it on, press the button twice to enter STANDALONE mode and go train. All your heart rate data is conveniently stored for download to Polar Flow when you’ve finished….
The Polar H7 is a dual transmission heart rate monitor sensor that send HR data to compatible devices in both Bluetooth (BTLE) and Polar T31 coded signals. This means the heart rate data can be picked up by BOTH your Polar wrist monitor AND a compatible APP running on both iOs and Android devices. For those who do NOT have a Polar wrist unit but do own a SMARTPHONE it adds another dimension to you training by adding heart rate to your favourite sports App like MapMyRide, Strava, Endomondo etc.
Polar started selling heart rate monitors in 1976. CardioCritic have tested the majority of Polar heart rate watches & fitness trackers – using them for the first time in 1996
- iPhone 4S onwards
- Most Android Smartphones (since 2021)
- Most Bluetooth 4 Smart Ready devices (but please note, not all – some devices do not use full implementation of Smart Ready)
- This list is expected to grow as more devices add Bluetooth Smart Ready
- Any Polar T31 coded wrist computer / heart rate monitor
- Polar have a list of compatible products here (opens a new window Polar Finland)
Beat App for iPhone and H7
The Polar H7 heart rate sensor is compatible with the Beat App for the iPhone 4S onwards and most modern Android smartphones. The Beat App helps you understand your workout better so you can get more effective results. Together with the H7 the Polar Beat APP is an exercise companion that is smarter than any other training app.
Main Features and Functions
Bluetooth 4.0 Heart Rate for Smartphones
The Polar Bluetooth H7 sensor gives you live heart rate on your mobile training application, to make the most of every session. If you want to keep track of your heart rate while training all you need is this heart rate sensor, a modern smartphone and one of the dozens of free training apps.
Bluetooth technology is already installed on the iPhone 4S and all subsequent models and most recent Android smartphones. In addition to low energy Bluetooth (BTLE 4.0) smart technology, the H7 also utilises T31 Coded 5.4 kHz transmission to connect with the majority of Polar training computers and compatible gym equipment. In summary, this Polar heart rate sensor belt can communicate with BOTH your smartphone running a fitness App and a Polar T31 coded wrist computer (or any gym equipment displaying the GymLink logo)
- Compatible with iPhone 4S, iPhone 5,6,7 and most Bluetooth 4.0 Android Smartphones
- The soft textile chest strap seamlessly adapts to your body shape, bringing full freedom of movement to your training
- Bluetooth smart ready technology – providing ECG-accurate heart rate to any Bluetooth smart ready device
- Also transmits on Polar coded 5 kHz transmission – therefore compatible with most Polar training computers
- Makes it quick and easy to add heart rate monitoring to your smart phone
- Long transmission range (~10m)
- User replaceable battery
- Includes a soft and comfortable hand washable textile heart rate monitor chest strap
- Compatible with any Polar T31 coded heart rate monitor like the FT4, FT7, F11, RS100, CS200, etc
Supported by Brilliant Fitness apps
The Polar H7 can be paired with dozens of Fitness APPS and it will make the time you spend training far more valuable and effective. If you still want to know more about the Polar H7 and the Polar Beat App, please read on …
A commonly neglected portion of any training programme is a PLAN. Knowing what you are trying to achieve and how you are going to do. It’s the most important part of your workout, before you’ve even started. Polar Beat App will help you plan for best results by allowing you to choose a training target – for example, to burn calories or maybe to improve on a previous time or distance record. It is suitable for any activity, indoors or out.
Training at the correct intensity with respect to your end goal is vitally important. To achieve the most effective workout you need to train at the right intensity. The Polar Beat App when paired with an H6 or H7 HRM sensor gives you live graphical and audible guidance to help you maintain the correct training intensity. As well as that this clever App tracks your distance, pace and route. Being on your smartphone means you also have the option of listening to your favourite music while you train.
So, you’ve done the hard bit, what’s next… a shower, a protein shake.. maybe? but you also need to analyse the quality of your training session. Review what you have achieved during each workout. Knowing what the main impact of a training session has been will help you plan the next one, whether you have improved aerobic endurance, increased your strength, or burnt fat.
Used in conjunction with a BTLE HRM sensor, the Beat App teaches you to better understand the impact of your workouts, the different intensity levels and how they effect your body and fitness including accurately tracking your calories burnt per session
You’ve planned, trained and analysed now share it on Social media with friends and family. A great way to motivate yourself, and others, to keeping fit and sticking with it.
- Polar Beat
- iThlere HRM and HRV. R-R interval tracker
- Jog Log
- Garmin Fit
- Cardio Mapper
Bluetooth Heart Rate for your Smartphone
With the Polar Beat App you can plan, train, analyse and share your workouts. So many people train without a goal before they begin and with no assessment of the quality of a session at the end. With the Polar Beat App each step of your journey to a fitter you is planned and monitored. The H7 Bluetooth heart rate sensor is compatible with any iPhone from 4s onwards and most Android phone using V4.3 and beyond. Once you have the HRM sensor the choice of fitness App is yours. Polar Beat is great but so to is Strava, Runkeeper, Endomondo, MapMyFitness and many more. (most offer a very comprehensive FREE version)
Alternative Bluetooth HR sensors
Polar certainly aren’t the only company who sell a BTLE (Bluetooth 4.0) heart rate sensor, but this is the ONLY one that will also pair with a Polar CODED heart rate monitor like the Polar RC3 or RCX5 etc. If you have no need to pair with a Polar wrist unit then you could also consider the Wahoo TICKR Bluetooth 4.0 HRM sensor
- Wahoo Tickr reviewed here – there are 3 models of this popular heart rate sensor
- BlueLeza HR belt reviewed here -ANT+ & Bluetooth heart rate sensor (highly recommended)
Polar have lead the world in heart rate monitoring since 1976 for a good reason. Their products are exceptional quality and can be considered as the GOLD STANDARD of heart rate monitoring. I personally use either this Polar H7 or the BlueLeza as my CONTROL heart rate monitor when doing comparisons with other models. There is nothing to criticise in this brilliant Bluetooth HR sensor. If you’re looking to add the metric of heart rate to your iPhone or Android phone then there is no better product on the market, thus the exemplary 5/5 star rating I have given the Polar H7.