Many people like a clock or a timer to be constantly in their line of sight while they’re working out because it helps to motivate them and keep track of how long they’re working out.
But this can be a problem with most of our conventional clock choices. Wall clocks are stationary so they don’t move with you.
Phones can be distracting because of notifications, you can’t see them from a distance and they’re easily broken.
One company has sought to create a solution to these problems with Timebirds.
The Crowdfunding Campaign
Timebirds is supposed to be a workout timer designed to be the best on the market.
The Advertised Selling Point
It’s portable, fits in your pocket and is magnetic. The timer is easily recharged with a USB-C charger and lasts 8 hours in workout mode or 30 days in idle.
Because it’s designed to be in a high-activity environment, Timebirds is designed to be durable.
The circuit board is fixed to the housing and then reinforced so that there’s nothing moving around inside the housing.
The face is made of a polycarbonate lens that’s both sweat and scratch resistant. The housing has also been reinforced and the outer layer is a no-slip rubber material. It’s visible from a distance, as well.
The lens is anti-glare and it has large 7-segment LED numbers for optimum visibility. All of the design features seem great, but is Timebirds worth it?
Our Analysis and Review
One of the major drawbacks is a glaring oversight.
I like the idea of making the timer be a standalone device to replace our phones so that we’re not distracted by notifications.
But if it’s supposed to replace our phones, shouldn’t it play music? A lot of people use their phones not only as a timer, but to listen to music.
As one backer pointed out, the timer is already shaped like a bluetooth speaker, so it wouldn’t be that hard to stick some speakers in there and add bluetooth capability.
Another drawback is that it doesn’t have a remote control or app integration feature.
This means that you’ll have to get up, go over to it and press buttons to reset it. That seems pretty distracting, and it could definitely mess up your groove if you had to do it very often.
Bluetooth capability would make app integration pretty easy, as many backers have said, it would make it allow for a lot more customization.
For instance, it could be set to play music and then pause the music when the timer went off.
It’s also possible that with app integration and bluetooth connectivity that it could be integrated with smart home devices like Amazon’s Alexa. This would make the device voice-controlled, and a lot easier to use.
Missing out some custom options
Another thing that’s going to be annoying is that there are different sound volume options, but you can’t set different tones for different alarms, and there are no voice commands.
So, anyone who’s been using their phone as a workout timer with all of these features and more will miss all of the customization.
They’re also really likely to be sorely disappointed with the device’s generic beeping.
The 99x beeping intervals
You can program the timer for rounds and rest intervals. However, the maximum number of rounds you can program is 99.
That’s probably fine for most things, as most of us are not doing anything 99 times. But, one user commented that his workout routine consists of a burpee every 7 seconds for an entire hour.
So, it would reach that 99 round limit in just 12 minutes, and every 12 minutes he would have to reset it. That could potentially be a pain.
The device doesn’t have any memory, either. While there are preset modes on it, they’re not for specific times.
So, if you do something frequently for a specific amount of time (like burpee guy), you’re going to have to manually set it every single time. It’s pretty likely that will get old pretty quick!
One of the things that backers are asking about is the ability to replace the battery in the device.
The battery is built into the device housing. That’s a good idea in terms of keeping the components stationary.
The battery is supposed to last for up to 10 years. But if it doesn’t for some reason, you’re out of luck because you can’t just replace the battery and keep using the device unless you have a lot of patience, skill and know-how.
And even then, it’s probably not advisable. So, that should give us a good indication that this device has a lifespan of 10 years.
So, after reading all of that, you’re probably wondering is Timebirds worth it, or not?
Here’s the verdict – maybe.
There actually aren’t any timers exactly like this saturating the market – visit the button to Amazon below.
Sure, you’ll find some magnetic timers, but they don’t have a sweat and scratch and glare resistant, super visible LED display.
But I would personally hold out until they add either app integration, bluetooth capability or both. If the idea is to cut down on distractions, it really should be an all-in-one device.
So, if I have to use my phone to listen to music, it’s really not doing me any good to have the Timebirds because I have apps on my phone that will time me and interrupt my music when the timer goes off, and so will my Echo Dot.
Until it really will replace a smart phone or smart home device, I don’t see the point.