Part of my new year’s resolution is to drink more water. The health benefits are obvious, but remembering to hydrate is a much bigger problem for me than it should be. That’s why when I stumbled across the Hidrate Spark Pro, a smart bottle that tracks your intake and reminds you when you’re behind, I snapped it up.
But when you consider the overall cost of the Hidrate Spark, the need to keep it charged and the fact there are so many alternatives out there, is the Hidrate Spark Pro worth it? In this review, I’ll share my honest opinion after owning and using this smart water bottle for 6 months, and try to help you decide whether it’s right for you too.
What is the Hidrate Spark Pro?
The Hidrate Spark Pro is a smart water bottle. This means it connects to a smartphone app to track your water intake and can give you a nudge when it’s time to drink more. So if you often struggle to drink enough, this gadget could be exactly what you’re looking for.
What makes the Hidrate Spark Pro different from other smart water bottles is its accuracy in tracking what you have drunk, and how much you still need to reach your target. It works with a device called a puck underneath the bottle reservoir, which effectively weighs the amount of water in the bottle. Each time you fill up or take a drink, the puck recalibrates and updates your app to show what’s left.
This puck lights up (yes, you can choose the colour!) and sends you a notification via the app when it’s time to drink more, but it’s clever enough to only do this if you’re behind the target. Virtually everything is customisable, including your targets, how you’re notified, how often and when, and there are lots of different styles, materials and colours of Hidrate Spark to choose from too.
Take a look at the full range available on Amazon in the table below.
|Hidrate Spark PRO Smart Water Bottle - 21oz||Brushed Steel||Chug Lid||$79.99||Check price on Amazon|
|Hidrate Spark STEEL Smart Water Bottle - 17oz||Brushed Steel||Straw Lid||$79.99||Check price on Amazon|
|Hidrate Spark PRO Smart Water Bottle - 32oz||Brushed Steel||Chug Lid||$89.99||Check price on Amazon|
|Hidrate Spark STEEL Smart Water Bottle - 32oz||Brushed Steel||Straw Lid||$89.99||Check price on Amazon|
|Hidrate Spark PRO Lite Smart Water Bottle - 24oz||Plastic||Chug Lid||$69.99||Check price on Amazon|
|Hidrate Spark PRO Lite Smart Water Bottle - 24oz||Plastic||Straw Lid||$48.99||Check price on Amazon|
|Hidrate Spark PRO Tumbler - 20oz||Stainless Steel||Straw Lid||$59.97||Check price on Amazon|
Hidrate Spark Pro Review
Here, I’ll share some of my favourite (and not so favourite) features of the Hidrate Spark Pro to help you decide if it’s the right smart water bottle for you. I’ll cover how easy it is to use, how it integrates with other devices and apps, how easy it is to clean and more.
The water bottle works in conjunction with a smartphone app that also helps you set up the technology for the first time. You can use it to personalise the lights, colours, notifications and targets before you use it.
It’s incredibly easy to use once it’s set up. Simply fill with water, leave to calibrate (it’ll flash blue once done) and then drink! After drinking, place the bottle back on a flat surface and the magic puck will work out how much water is left. The handy smartphone app will then automatically keep track of your intake and, other than seeing how well you’ve done, you’ll rarely need to use it for anything else.
Once you reach your target, the puck will light up with a series of flashes and rainbow colours, acting as a mini celebration for helping you stay hydrated.
If you have a smartwatch or other fitness tracker, the Hidrate Spark Pro can integrate with this to keep it updated with your water intake. There’s no need for you to keep it updated anywhere else as the Hidrate SparkPro does all your tracking for you. This makes it easy to keep all your health metrics up to date in one place.
Keeping it clean
The Hidrate Spark Pro can be cleaned in the dishwasher (as long as you remove the puck first!) or, alternatively, by hand in the sink with hot, soapy water. In that sense, it’s as easy as any other water bottle to keep clean. A special water bottle brush might be particularly useful, though.
The worst thing about the Hidrate Spark Pro in comparison to standard water bottles is the need to keep the puck charged. While it has a surprisingly long battery life of 10-14 days, it can often run out at inopportune moments such as during your commute, or when you’re away from home and forget your charger. Of course, this is the same as all devices and is easily overcome if you have a regular charging schedule. Charging it for 2.5 hours while you sleep is a great idea as it makes sure it’s fully charged for when you need it to stay hydrated throughout the day.
Another frustrating thing I have found about the Hidrate Spark Pro is when you’re travelling. If you travel through different time zones, the Hidrate Spark Pro doesn’t seem to sync with the new time zone. As a result, when I travelled to Australia from the UK, my Hidrate Spark Pro was reminding me to drink while I was asleep and had notifications snoozed during the day.
This problem could be overcome by updating your own notification settings to alert at different hours, but if there’s a setting that will do this automatically for you, I’m yet to find it.
There are no two ways about it: the Hidrate Spark Pro is expensive compared to other water bottles. You’ve probably already got hundreds of reusable water bottles at home, right? But do any of them boast the feature list of the Spark? I doubt it.
To keep costs down, you can select from a range of different bottles made by the same company. Depending on the material you choose and the features it has, you may be able to save some money. Buying from Amazon is often the cheapest way to do it (though whether you agree with their ethics is up to you) so I’ve linked the full range here.
The Overall Verdict: Is the Hidrate Spark Pro worth it?
If like me, the thought of having to keep track of how many bottles of water you’re drinking throughout the day sounds like a chore, the Hidrate Spark Pro is a worthy investment. Since I bought it, I’ve felt much healthier, brighter and, of course, much more hydrated.
I love the way it reminds me to drink without being too persistent, but the best thing is its ability to track how much I’m drinking. As a result, I don’t need to remember how many glasses I’ve had throughout the day, nor do I need to write it down. The Hidrate Spark Pro does all of the hard work for me, so all I need to do is drink when I need to.
Alternative Water Bottles
Of course, the Hidrate Spark Pro isn’t the only smart water bottle on the market. If you like the sound of it, but want to compare it with others, I’ve listed my favourites below:
- WaterH – The WaterH bottle is very similar to the Hidrate Spark Pro in that it uses Bluetooth to track water intake, it has an LED ring in its base that flashes when it’s time to drink, and connects with the app so you can keep an eye on your progress. WaterH also has a couple of extra features, including a water quality sensor that scans the water to understand its makeup. The wireless charger is another practical feature that makes it easy to stay charged for long-lasting power.
- Hidrate Spark Tap Smart Water Bottle – A water bottle from the same company but with slightly different features. Instead of automatically tracking your water intake each time you take a sip, the Tap bottle works when you tap your smartphone to the chip after finishing a full bottle. You can also manually adjust your intake through the app. The puck in the bottom of the bottle glows to remind you to take a drink each hour for up to 12 hours. It’s cheaper than other Hidrate Spark bottles and available on Amazon.
- Hyeta Watter Bottle – Hyeta water bottles are standard, analogue bottles printed with reminders on the outside. These reminders show you how much to drink at certain points of the day, and two full bottles will satisfy the recommended water intake for an average person. Other than the printed words, there are no automated tracking or reminders, so the onus is still on you to pay attention to them. That said, it’s the same price as a standard water bottle, so is a great option if you’re looking to save!
Check out more water bottles available on Amazon right here.
Other Gadgets & Ways to Stay Hydrated
If a smart water bottle feels a bit too much like using a sledgehammer to crack a nut, there are many other gadgets or ways to remind yourself to stay hydrated. Again, I’ve listed my favourites below:
- Ulla Smart Hydration Reminder – This little gadget can be popped around the neck of any water bottle, and uses an accelerometer to detect when your bottle has been picked up or moved into a ‘drinking’ position. When it hasn’t detected movement for a while, it vibrates and lights up to remind you. It’s different to smart water bottles in that it only does the reminding, and cannot track your intake. However, it is a much cheaper and more sustainable alternative to the Hidrate Spark Pro as you get to keep your existing bottle.
- An app – Perhaps the simplest ‘smart’ method to remind you to stay hydrated is through a water app. Apps like this send you a notification when it’s time to drink more, and lets you hit a button on the app when you’ve had a glass of water. There are plenty of free apps like this available, including Water Reminder, My Water and Waterllama.