Whoop vs. Oura Ring: 5 Must-Know Facts
- The Oura Ring has been endorsed by a variety of celebrities including Kim Kardashian and Prince Harry.
- Unlike other smart bands, the WHOOP doesn’t have a display.
- Oura Rings only weigh between 4 to 6 grams depending on the size.
- WHOOP is worn by athletes including Rory McIlroy and LeBron James.
- Over 1 million Oura Rings have been sold as of March 2022.
You don’t have to look hard if you’re interested in a wearable that can track your fitness and sleep. Two of the more interesting companies in the field are Whoop and Oura, whose wearables come in unique form factors.
When you buy one of the company’s products, you are also buying into its ecosystem, so a Whoop vs. Oura Ring comparison is crucial. While we aren’t going to compare their trackers head-to-head, we are going to take a closer look at the companies themselves.
Whoop vs. Oura Ring: Side-by-Side Comparison
|Petteri Lahtela, Kari Kivelä, Markku Koskela
Oura Ring vs. Whoop: What’s the Difference?
Whoop and Oura Health were only founded a year apart, but these companies’ products took a significantly different path to market. Whoop is the brainchild of Will Ahmed, who launched the company through the Harvard Innovation Lab. SoftBank is among its investors, and the company has raised more than $400 million in funding across 9 rounds since its inception.
Oura Health was founded in Finland and introduced its first product through Kickstarter in 2016. While they haven’t raised quite as much capital, they attracted major investors and really grabbed the public’s attention in 2020 by partnering with the NBA when Covid-19 struck.
Both companies produce wearables designed with the user’s well-being in mind, but WHOOP makes a smart “strap” while Oura’s wearable comes in the form of a smart ring. You’ll also need a membership to take advantage of most of the features provided by the Oura Ring and WHOOP.
Oura Health Products
Oura’s claim to fame is their fitness tracking ring, which is the only product you’ll find in their current catalog. The first generation of the Oura Ring arrived through Kickstarter. While it was a marvel at the time, the company has made significant changes to its newer models.
The Oura Ring 2 was introduced in 2018, but the newest version is the Oura Ring 3, which launched in 2021. It has a new sensor array with daytime heart rate tracking. The previous generation could only do that while you slept. Sleep staging has improved, although battery life has largely remained the same.
The Oura Ring 3 has a SpO2 sensor with a red LED that measures blood oxygen levels. Heart rate monitoring comes through green LEDs and there are also sensors to measure skin temperature. A PPG or photoplethysmography sensor is also embedded on the inside of this high-tech ring.
Data is easy to read and access through the Oura app, which uses a score-based system for metrics like sleep, readiness, and activity. The ring can give you a sleep score based on when you wake up and it offers tips to improve your sleep based on that information.
This smart ring can even track your nap times and help you make adjustments. The Oura Ring is water resistant up to 100 meters and it’s made from titanium. You can swim in it, and you won’t have to worry about topping off the battery for around 7 days.
At this time, the Oura Ring Gen3 is available in five finishes and two styles with the traditional round Horizon or Heritage. Ring sizes are 6-13 and there is a high-end collaboration with Gucci in Gold for consumers that prefer a bit of bling.
WHOOP has produced four versions of its wearable since the WHOOP 1.0 arrived in 2015. The latest version is WHOOP 4.0, which performs many of the same functions as previous models from the company.
The WHOOP 4.0 has five LEDs and four photodiodes – an improvement from the last generation. It’s also 33% smaller, according to the company. The biggest differences are new sensors, however, which allow the device to monitor new areas during the day and night.
The company added a SpO2 and skin temperature sensor for the WHOOP 4.0, so it now measures blood oxygen levels and skin temperature. There’s no screen, but there is a new haptic feedback system that can send out alerts as needed. WHOOP’s new tracker has an IP68 rating as well, so it’s dustproof and resistant to water up to 10 meters.
WHOOP kept the style of their smart band simple. You can wear the 4.0 almost anywhere thanks to the design and some interesting accessories. Each unit consists of a SuperKnit band with a Fast Link Slider system that makes changing colors a breeze. Whether you’re sleeping or jogging, it’s comfortable to wear.
The available bands for the WHOOP 3 vary from vivid multicolored hues or camouflage to more subtle colors like Onyx, Buttercup, and Ice. The color of the unit or clasp varies as well, which allows users to mix and match until they find something that suits their personal style.
Oura Membership Plans
With Oura, membership plans are nice and simple. When you purchase an Oura Ring, you get one month free. After that, the membership plan is $5.99 per month. With the ring, they are a package providing everything from SpO2 monitoring to rest modes.
There are no tiered plans, and while there’s no option to pay annually, you can cancel at any time. Access to features is limited without a membership plan, however.
Without it, you won’t be able to see your daily health insights or any of the key tracking features. You will get three daily scores for Activity, Sleep, and Readiness, but the Oura Ring’s abilities are dramatically reduced without a subscription.
WHOOP Membership Plans
WHOOP’s approach to its membership plan is just as unique as its product. Their plan is straightforward with three options, so you can choose from a monthly, yearly, or 2-year subscription. The monthly plan is $30 and you can save $5 with an annual plan or $10 with a 24-month membership to their service.
WHOOP Pro is another plan at $12 per month that users can tack onto an existing plan. It provides a 20% discount on accessories, early access to new versions of WHOOP, and free items from the company every three months.
The twist is that you can get the Whoop 4.0 for free with a membership, but have to return it when you cancel. The WHOOP will be the latest version from the company, although with refurbished hardware. You’ll also get a lifetime warranty when purchasing directly through the company’s website. Just make sure you have an active membership when your wearable breaks.
Essentially, you have to purchase a membership to get any real use from the WHOOP since it has no display. Otherwise, you won’t get access to personalized insights, coaching features, or tracking features.
Consumers interested in purchasing an Oura Ring have several options to choose from when it comes to the finish and size. Many people consider rings an accessory, so you won’t find any real add-ons or extras from Oura outside of its charging base.
With WHOOP, there are dozens of bands to choose from and battery packs for the WHOOP 3.0 and 4.0 smart straps. The WHOOP BODY section is what sets them apart, and it allows you to purchase garments designed to work with the WHOOP 4.0.
Men can choose from athletic ANY-WEAR boxers in four different colors, compression tops, and shorts. For women, there are sports bras, leggings, shorts, and other types of performance gear. Every piece of clothing is designed with fitness in mind and has a special pocket for the WHOOP module.
Whoop vs. Oura Ring: Which One Is Best?
The Oura Ring and WHOOP 4.0 both track a variety of metrics from blood oxygen levels and your heart rate to how well you sleep. The form factor is the first step in finding out which wearable is right for you. You can wear the WHOOP as a strap, in an armband, or inside of a garment. By comparison, the Oura is only useful on a finger.
Both devices focus on well-being and recovery, and you’ll have to pay for a membership to get any real usage from the Oura Ring 3 or WHOOP 4.0. That’s where pricing comes into play, and where we feel the Oura Ring provides more bang for your buck.
You can purchase the WHOOP 4.0 outright as a gift, but most get them for free with a subscription. The Oura Ring price begins at $349 in a Silver finish and tops out at $549 in Rose Gold. It costs more upfront compared to $30 a month to “try” the WHOOP, but you can resell the Oura Ring. As a result, you aren’t quite as tethered to the subscription.
Battery life is comparable, although Oura has an edge with third-party app integration. Overall, we feel the Oura Ring is better suited for people interested in an everyday tracker, while the WHOOP 4.0 would be more beneficial to people focused on fitness and recovery.
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