GOQii Stream smartwatch review: a decent offering under Rs 3,000

Here's our review of the GOQii Stream - priced in India at Rs 2,999.

GOQii, best known for its wearables and app, which work together to offer personalised remote health coaching, recently introduced a new fitness smartwatch called the GOQii Stream in India. The smartwatch is priced in India at under Rs 3,000 and comes with a bunch of interesting features such as Bluetooth calling, a SPo2 monitor, heart rate tracking, and multiple exercise modes. Additionally, like every other GOQii wearable, the GOQii Stream also comes with a free three-month personal coaching subscription. I managed to get my hands on the device and decided to put it through its paces. Let’s find out how well the GOQii Stream performed:

The lowdown

  • The GOQii Stream is a sturdy-looking smartwatch with a squarish dial and a plastic frame. There is no IP or ATM certification; however, the company claims the watch is water resistant. Be that as it may, I won’t advise you to fancy your chances with the wearable while hitting the shower or taking a dip in a swimming pool. However, it is worth mentioning that I used the watch to track my workouts, and it seems to have handled sweat really well. Add to that, the GOQii Stream is fairly lightweight at 40 grams and the wearable offers a comfortable fit and can be worn over extended periods, thanks to the chamfered edges and soft plastic back. I didn’t face any discomfort with the watch’s straps either, which, by the way, have been fashioned out of silicone and come with detachable quick-release pins to swap them and change the watch’s look on the go. That said, the company only offers the wearable in a black accent and straps, so you might have to scrounge for aftermarket straps in other colourways.
  • Be that as it may, the wearable has a physical toggle, which sits flush with the watch’s body and doesn’t bite the wrist while doing pushups and other activities, along with a microphone to support Bluetooth calling on the right spine. The GOQii Stream also has a built-in speaker. While its presence is appreciated, I wish it was better placed and offered a good sound quality. With its current positioning, i.e. at the back panel, just below the left spine, the speaker gets muffled quite easily by the arm, thus impacting the quality of the sound output.
  • As for the Bluetooth voice calling feature, it is pretty good and reliable, so long the GOQii Stream is connected to your smartphone via ‘GOQii Call Connect’ from the phone’s Bluetooth settings. This is in addition to pairing the wearable with the companion GOQii app, which is available for download on Android mobile phones and iPhones. More about the app later, but for now, you should know that the GOQii Stream can also relay music/audio from your phone. While it’s a nice feature, the experience isn’t that great and there is no option to switch the audio back to the smartphone from the watch without disconnecting the GOQii Call Connect and giving up Bluetooth calling. This could be a deal breaker for many.
  • Display-wise, the wearable ships with a 1.69-inch, 240x280p resolution touchscreen panel. Although the bezels could have been thinner, the screen is bright, responsive, and visually pleasing to look at even under direct sunlight. The wearable also supports the raise to wake gesture, which comes enabled by default and works as advertised. Lest I forget, once invoked, the gesture keeps the screen active for a few seconds, thereby allowing users to access built-in apps and workout modes without so much as pressing a button. All this makes the watch a little more convenient to use. Apart from this, the GOQii Stream supports an array of watch faces, both preset and customisable.
  • The GOQii Stream interface is pretty straightforward. A swipe left or right on the screen offers weather updates, notifications, music control, workout modes, and stats on your heart rate and blood saturation level aka SpO2. A swipe up from the home screen shows steps walked, calories burned, and distance covered during the day, while a swipe down offers quick control for brightness and a toggle to turn the raise to wake gesture on or off, among other things. The physical toggle on the watch can be used as a home/ back button as well. The interface also offers some nifty features such as a link icon to show whether the watch is paired with a smartphone – there is a sound alert for the same – as well as the ability to set timers, alarms, and reminders.
  • That being said, the entire operation felt a bit slow to me, and the watch had some noticeable lags while switching between screens. However, the GOQii Stream did not freeze or bog down to any activity. I was able to track my vitals such as steps, heart rate, SpO2, sleep, and workouts, with no issues whatsoever. For the uninitiated, the watch supports 18 exercise modes, including running, workout, cycling, cricket, yoga, climbing, aerobics, and more.
  • As for the watch’s tracking abilities, they weren’t the most accurate. Much like the other budget and some mid-range wearables, the GOQii Stream couldn’t help but add ghost steps while driving or sleeping to the overall step count tally. To give you some perspective, the watch added more than 4,000 steps while I was covering a 21km stretch on a bike. That’s quite bewildering, as the device is a registered CDSCO medical tracker too. Additionally, I found the GOQii Stream sleep data a bit off. In fact, my dog tends to wake me up after I’ve crashed for the night but despite that, the tracker would show that I slept all the way through, which is a bummer.
  • The GOQii Stream has a battery life of 3-4 days, with all the functions enabled, and I was consistently hitting those numbers during my review. The company claims that the battery life can be extended up to 7 days, but that would mean giving up a lot of features such as continuous heart rate monitoring and operating the watch in low brightness. The GOQii Stream can be charged from 0-100 percent in about 2-2.5 hours using the 2-pin magnetic charger that latches onto the back of the wearable.
  • The smartwatch pairs with a smartphone using the GOQii app, which provides deep insights into your activities along with a host of other features such as podcasts, blogs, fitness products on sale, and challenges. The app comes with Smart Preventive Health Plans as well, which offer an ecosystem of services, including a certified personal coach, doctor consultation, PRO classes with Master Trainers, and access to all GOQii Play Live classes, among other things. One of the preventive subscription plans, GOQii Life, comes free with every new GOQii watch for three months. I was able to activate mine using the plan using the code, which is bundled with the GOQii Stream. Following this, I was asked to fill out a long form comprising basic details such as age, weight, height, food and water intake, levels of physical activity, sleeping patterns, history of illnesses, stress levels, and more, as well as choose a personal coach. The latter got in touch with me via a call, and after getting to know about my lifestyle and health targets, prepared a diet chart and set a few habits for me. After this, the coach remained in touch with me via the chat option (you do have an option to connect with the coach via call again) on the app and tracked my progress constantly. Now, the GOQii app fetches the workout, steps, and sleep data from the Stream automatically, but there were a few things that I had to enter manually. The latter includes my habit updates and food and water intake (images are optional). While it takes quite a bit of involvement, I found the service useful and you would too if you are into fitness.
  • That being said, the UI (user interface) of the GOQii app is not the most user-friendly. While it looks better than when I last used the app while reviewing GOQii Vital 4.0, some work still needs to be done – starting with the pairing process. Instead of scanning a QR code to connect the watch seamlessly, the pairing process is quite tedious and long.
  • The app’s home screen needs to be reworked too and as things stand, the interface feels quite cluttered. Additionally, the app feels a bit slow and the service takes a few seconds to fire up and a couple more seconds to sync data from your smartwatch.
  • That’s not to say that the utility is a lost cause, mind you. In fact, the app offers some unique features, including GOQii cash, which is a virtual currency awarded for completing weekly steps targets and other health goals. The cash can be redeemed at the GOQii Health Store for discounts on various products. Moreover, you also get the option to interact with other users, read informative medical articles, and play some casual games.

Verdict

Long story short, the GOQii Stream seems to be the most feature-packed smartwatch for its asking price, i.e. Rs 2,999. The wearable comes with Bluetooth voice calling, which is a rarity in its price bracket. Furthermore, the device features an accommodating display, an array of workout modes, vitals tracking, and more importantly, assistive coaching. That said, the Stream does struggle to track vitals accurately. Furthermore, the wearable ships with limited colour options and features an uninspiring design too. Be that as it may, the wearable gets a lot right too and consequently, makes for a decent option in the sub Rs 3K segment.

Expert’s rating: 3.5/5

Pros

  • Comfortable design
  • Capable screen
  • Decent battery life
  • Bluetooth calling feature

Cons

  • Performance could have been better
  • Speaker needs improvement
  • App’s UI is a bit confusing