Smart water bottles are the latest thing in hydration. The best smart water bottles keep you on track every day so that you always drink enough water to stay healthy and happy. As with every new innovation, though, there are lots of brands that have jumped on the bandwagon with crappy models that are frustrating to use and unreliable at best.
In this guide, we’ll teach you everything you need to know to shop for a smart water bottle like a pro. You’ll learn about the different kinds available and find out which models we currently recommend!
|Picture||Product Name||Volume||Color Options||Cost|
|Hidrate Spark 2.0A Smart Water Bottle||24 oz||Black, Purple, Royal Blue, Teal, White||$|
|HYDRA Tech Bottle||20 oz||Black, Blue, Gray, Orange, Red||$$|
Best Smart Water Bottle Reviews (2019)
The Hidrate Spark 2.0A is the latest version of the Spark, which has been our favorite smart water bottle since it came onto the market a couple years ago. The latest version addresses many of the flaws we’d found in the first version and improves connectivity no end! It’s still not perfect, but it’s a stellar example of what a good smart water bottle should be.
One of the best things about the Hidrate is how many options it gives you for reminders. It glows to remind you to stay hydrated. You also get notifications on your smartphone and smartwatch. So, whether you’re looking at your smart devices or the water bottle itself, you’ll always know when it’s time for a drink!
It syncs easily with Apple’s Health app and similar programs on Fitbit and Garmin devices. Most other smart water bottles work only with their own companion app or with one ecosystem from a more mainstream tech company. The Hidrate works with practically everything. Setup is easy and all the connectivity features are free.
There’s two-way connectivity with your wearables. What that means is that the Hidrate adjusts your hydration recommendations based on your activity each day. Work out especially hard on a Wednesday afternoon? The Hidrate app will automatically adjust to make sure you drink that extra bottleful.
While many smart water bottles place all the focus on the smart features and package them in a relatively crappy bottle, that’s not the case with the Hidrate. It’s made from BPA-free plastic and is very easy to clean. Most of the components are dishwasher-safe, and the sensor just needs a quick handwashing.
It’s not perfect. Reliability is the biggest problem, as with any smart water bottle. Thankfully, the percentage of Hidrate units with problems is extremely small compared with the competition.
Quality control isn’t stellar. We’ve seen some reports that certain colors (the purple in particular) aren’t built as well as the others. Some other buyers have noted receiving bottles that were a bit stinky. We haven’t experienced any of these issues ourselves, but do make sure you have free return shipping just in case you need a replacement unit!
It’s not insulated. Be sure to know that up front! A lot of the folks who have slated this thing online were mainly annoyed that it didn’t keep ice water chilled. That’d be nice, but that’s not what a smart water bottle is primarily designed to do.
The app isn’t perfect, either. Syncing can be a bit finicky, though it’s certainly improved with the last few updates. Hopefully all the kinks will be ironed out soon. Still, having said that, the Hidrate app is still the most reliable of the ones we’ve reviewed.
This HYDRA bottle is a fun alternative to the Hidrate. It’s not a super connected smart water bottle, but it has basic functionality and a wide range of features that are good for folks who don’t use wearables or other fitness apps. The companion app sense you simple reminders, and you can use all the other built-in features to make your workouts more exciting!
Even though it doesn’t have connectivity with apps like Apple’s Health or trackers by Garmin/Fitbit, it does have a decent companion app to keep you on track with daily hydration. The app sends reminders to drink at timed intervals, and then you just tick them off as you have a drink.
This is definitely not the most sophisticated tech on the market, but it’s good for folks who aren’t using wearables or fitness apps anyway. It does the trick simply, and doesn’t get involved with the rest of your ecosystem.
You get a lot of other features for your money. There’s a bluetooth speaker built into the bottle, which you can use to play your workout tunes wherever you like to exercise. It’s a really convenient solution for outdoor sessions or exercising at home.
We also love that you can charge your phone from the bottle! This thing has a fairly massive power bank built in, so you can plug any USB charging cable in to get a top-up while you’re getting those reps done.
Another great feature for working out outside: there’s a set of lights built in. You can use it as a flashlight, or turn on a flashing emergency light. These are perfect for folks who cycle at night or go out for late walks.
It has a mixed track record for reliability, like most smart water bottles. While most folks have good experiences with it, we’ve seen reports from isolated buyers who have run into issues.
As we’ve noted already, it’s not especially connective. It can’t adapt its recommendations to your activity level or coordinate with other fitness apps. It also doesn’t track your water consumption by itself. So, if those are the features you look for in a smart water bottle, stick with the Hidrate.
Which of these smart water bottles should you buy?
The Hidrate Spark 2.0A is the best choice for most buyers. It has excellent connectivity that makes it easy to use with fitness apps such as Apple’s Health and Fitbit’s tracking system. It’s as reliable as anything else on the market, and there’s no significant advantage to spending more for competing models. Simply put, we think it’s the best smart water bottle on the market right now.
The HYDRA is a good choice if you’re not concerned about smartwatch integration or being able to coordinate with other health apps. Despite the fact that it has the most features of any of our recommendations, we’d actually say that it has the narrowest functionality as far as being a smart water bottle. If you use it with the companion app, you’ll get reminders to drink, but the bottle itself doesn’t track your consumption. It can’t coordinate with workout apps or fitness trackers. Having said that, if you don’t use those, it offers lots of other features that should make your workouts more enjoyable. Get this one if you like the idea of having a water bottle/speaker combo,
Why don’t we recommend more smart water bottles?
Good question! We always like to present readers with a range of options, no matter what type of fitness gear we’re reviewing. In this category, though, there simply aren’t many great options available at the moment. For instance, there are a whole bunch of models that seem pretty identical to the Hidrate Spark, but they aren’t very reliable and most have more limited connectivity. We try not to recommend anything that we’re not confident will last a decent amount of time and do everything you’d expect it to do. So, for the moment, we only recommend two smart water bottles. We’re always on the lookout for the latest and greatest fitness tech, though, so do check back in future to see which new products we’re loving!
Smart water bottles are a brand new category of fitness gear, so it’s not all that surprising that they vary widely in terms of features and functionality. Some are dishwasher-safe, while some have to be washed by hand. Some include extra features like lights or speakers, while other simply track your water consumption and feed data to your phone’s health app.
Be sure to have a look through all our recommendations to find a model with features you’ll make plenty of use of. For instance, if you have a smartwatch like an Apple Watch or Fitbit, it makes sense to go for something that can sync with your wearables and adjust hydration recommendations according to how much exercise you get on a given day. If you work out at home or outside, getting a bottle with a bluetooth speaker built in could be a very convenient way to play your workout tunes without needing to wear earbuds.
Check Out The Apps
A smart water bottle is only as good as the app it comes with! Of course, you also want the bottle to track water consumption accurately and connect easily with your phone. That’s definitely important, but you also need an app on the other end that makes it easy and convenient to keep track of how you’re doing with your hydration. Look for apps that are compatible with your specific smartphone’s OS. Have a look at the app page on your respective app store to see how the interface looks, and whether it seems like a good fit for you. If you already use something like Apple’s Health app, it makes sense to find a smart water bottle with an app that ties in to adjust hydration suggestions according to how hard you work out. If you don’t use any other health apps, make sure the water bottle’s app does everything you need it to do. It should at the very least track your water consumption, ping you if you need to drink more, and show you how you’re doing over time.
Don’t Spend A Fortune
Smart water bottles are an emerging technology. While some of them are quite good, you should still treat them as prototypes. Don’t spend a fortune on yours. You can bet that there will be a new and improved version fairly soon. You also want to hold out on that big smart water bottle purchase until premium models have been out long enough to have proven track records in the reliability department.
It’s Not All About The Bottle
Last but not least, we encourage buyers to remember that as great as smart water bottles can be, they’re not perfect. As we’ve noted above, even the best options can be a bit unreliable and finicky to use every day. We’ve recommended the best models being produced today, but there’s still a way to go before these devices really come into their own.
If you try one of our recommendations and aren’t all that thrilled by how it works, don’t worry! You can always check back here to see if we’ve found any newer bottles. Or, try using a hydration app instead of a bottle. You’ll have to check off the reminders each time you have a drink, but the apps achieve pretty much the same purpose without you having to buy a bottle or hope that the sensors work reliably. Leaf is a good one, and there are plenty of others as well.
Now that you’ve reached the end of this buying guide, you ought to be an expert on all things smart water bottle! To learn more about any of the models we’ve recommended, simply click on the links in our reviews. That’s an easy way to check current prices, scope out color options, and much more. You can also visit our homepage to find more reviews, recommendations and advice covering all your fitness needs.