Gabit Smart Ring review: a holistic approach to health

This tiny, innocuous-looking thing is supposed to be the next big thing in wearable tech. Hardly anyone will realise you’re wearing it, but it’ll track your activity and vitals 24 x 7, and then give you info that you can use to better your health. The ability to do its thing without getting in the way is, in fact, its raison d’être. I’m referring to smart rings of course — which is a segment that looks poised for big growth. In fact, IDC’s Navkendar Singh believes 2024 will be a marquee year for smart rings, and health and fitness will move from watches to this category of devices. All indications point towards this too. It might be early days, but there’s already a fair bit of action in the space, with the likes of Ultrahuman, Boat (review), and Noise (review) in the fray. I have on my finger a smart ring that comes from Gabit, a moniker which is a portmanteau of the words ‘good’ and ‘habit’.

Gabit is a company that covers various aspects of health and fitness, offering, among other things, subscription-based plans to help you take you closer to your health goals. It provides access to tailored nutrition plans, coaches and workouts. It sells skincare products too. Coming back to the Gabit Smart Ring, it comes across as a fairly well-rounded option (pun unintended), as it attempts to take a holistic approach to health and fitness. Let me elaborate.

Design

Available in matte black and matte silver options, the Gabit Smart Ring comes in different sizes. Size really matters here, so when you order one, Gabit will first send you a sizing kit containing plastic rings that you can try out to zero in on the perfect fit, and will then ship the smart ring accordingly.


The company recommends you wear it on your index finger for the best results, but if you don’t prefer that, you can wear it on your ring finger or middle finger too. Fashioned out of titanium, the Gabit Smart Ring is super lightweight at just 3.1 grams, and not too bulky — 8mm wide and 2.7mm thick.


There’s a small ridge on top that helps you wear it correctly, ensuring that the sensors are towards the inside of the palm. The inside of the ring is where the sensors are, visible through the transparent resin layer that covers them. There are three bumps there are well, possibly to ensure good contact with the skin. The ring is 5ATM water resistant, and in my month-long usage, hasn’t gotten scuffed or shown signs of use yet. Also, I think the ring is comfortable to wear at all times, even to bed. Unless you’re completely averse to the idea of wearing a ring, I think you’d agree that it’s a more comfortable wearable overall for tracking physical activity, as compared to a smartwatch. That’s key, since that aspect is one of the mainstays of the smart ring category.

Features


Thanks to an array of sensors, including a PPG sensor, an SpO2 sensor, a skin temperature sensor and a 3D accelerometer, the Gabit Ring monitors a variety of activities and vitals. The parameters it tracks include steps and workouts, sleep patterns, heart rate, resting heart rate, heart rate variability, VO2 max, stress, SpO2 and skin temperature, with the companion app pitching in with nutrition data by logging food and calorie intake. Out of these, mainly the heart rate and SpO2 can be measured on demand, while the other figures show up after you’ve worn the ring for a while. There are no features specific to women’s health at this time.

App and connectivity


Speaking of the companion app, Gabit offers a homonymous one on both iOS and Android platforms. The app experience is critical for any wearable, and even more so in the case of a smart ring. Since the user can’t interact with the ring, and there’s no way for the latter to offer any feedback, the app is the gateway to everything this particular segment has to offer. And in case of Gabit, the app is possibly one of its best features. But also a cause of concern. For one, the app has a lot going on, with its interface categorised into tabs — home, skincare, nutrition, fitness and community. The data captured by the ring is available on the home tab, though you need to scroll a bit to find it.


However, there’s a lot of info and visuals packed into that home tab, including the option to log food, choosing your health goal, details on paid subscription plans, user testimonials, some workouts, details of Gabit coaches, and more. With so much going on, the app might seem a bit overwhelming at first. Also, the ring data doesn’t sync with platforms like Google Fit and Apple Health at the moment. A recent update has added a small icon on top of the home tab for the user to jump directly to the ring data, but I think it deserves a tab of its own.



When you dive into the ring data though, the app experience seems much better. The data is presented well, with easy-to-understand visuals, scores, charts, and trends. The data panel shows the ring battery level up front and a sync now button, followed by data on sleep, activity, and vitals. Vitals cover resting heart rate, VO2 Max, heart rate, HRV, SpO2, and skin temperature, displayed in a card layout. Tapping on each displayed more details and trends. The sleep score and activity score are aided by short but useful pieces of info indicating how that score might affect your day. Like this one for instance: “Short, but plenty of deep sleep. You slept for less than ideal time, but it was good, deep sleep, which is associated with improved immune function.”


Performance and battery life

Based on my usage, I think the data captured by the ring is quite accurate, especially sleep and heart rate. The step count seemed a bit higher when I compared to the steps counted by a premium smartwatch, but still within acceptable margin. I think the key point to remember here is that instead of focusing on the absolute numbers of a specific day or activity, it’s more important to keep track of historical data and trends, and that’s where the Gabit Smart Ring’s info comes in useful.

I also tried out Gabit’s health and nutrition plan and found that to be quite useful. I think Gabit should also be able to utilise user health data as captured by the ring to further enhance and tailor their fitness and diet plans, with consent of course.


Coming to the battery life, the Gabit Smart Ring can be juiced up through a small charging case included in the box. Resembling a TWS case but smaller, this charging case has a Type-C port on the side, and Gabit includes a Type-A to Type-C cable in the box. When you pop in the ring for charging, the sensor bumps on the inside of the ring align with matching indents in the case, so charging is a convenient affair. It charges quickly too, taking less than a couple of hours for a full charge. The battery life is quite impressive. Gabit promises a week’s worth, and the ring delivers on that, even lasting a day more sometimes.

Verdict


The smart ring category in India is still in the nascent stages, but things are likely to change drastically when the likes of Samsung get into this arena. Gabit is one of the early movers and seems to taking a well-rounded approach. The Gabit Smart Ring is priced at Rs 13,800 (Rs 13,100 after discount and available on gabit.com). I think the app could do with some tweaks in the areas I mentioned above, but other than that, ticks the right boxes in terms of collecting and analysing activity data, and also with respect to the battery life. With its smart ring and the ecosystem Gabit is building around it, the company aims to give you a more holistic view of your overall health instead of just focussing on activity and vitals. Encompassing aspects like skincare, nutrition and even giving you access to real coaches and live workouts, it seems to be headed in the right direction too.

Editor’s rating: 8 / 10

Pros:

  • Slim and lightweight
  • Accurate metrics & useful analysis
  • Holistic approach to health
  • Very good battery life

Cons:

  • App can feel overwhelming
  • Lacks data sync with Apple Health & Google Fit
  • No women’s health features