Testimonial – A senior citizen tells us about his Connected Health experience

February 28, 2014

Following the survey we recently sent to our “salt and pepper hair” users, we contacted one of the Withingers who agreed to share their experience with us… François is an active and connected 75 year old grand father living in the North East of France. Far from being intimidated by technology, he uses several Withings products on a daily basis to monitor his health. Here is his testimonial.


You first bought a Withings scale, right?

I started with the bathroom scale. I was at a FNAC (a french chain of retail stores) and I saw this device… I bought it and I saw that it worked well.


What prompted you to buy it ?

The problem when you start to control your weight using a scale is to note your weight every day. The main asset of connected scales is to avoid this tedious constraint. With my Withings scale I just have to step on it – it only takes 20 seconds – and I instantly get the results. I also appreciate the fact that the whole family can enjoy it as you can set up multiple users.


Then you purchased a second Withings product?

Yes. In early 2012 we learned that we had some health issues in the family. I bought the Blood Pressure Monitor because it could be useful. The cuff allowed us to regularly send our BP and pulse measurements to our doctor. Our GP was also a bit amazed!


What was your doctor’s first reaction when you told him that you were using a connected BP cuff?

I have a good relationship with our family doctor that I see for the follow up of my heart condition. I also see my cardiologist once a year – he had me ​​take a stress test last week… Doctors want to maintain the upper hand. They are a little skeptical. The connected health phenomena will happen anyway, but it will take time. They will have to deal with self-tracking and connected objects.



In what context did you use your Blood Pressure Monitor?

I am now 75 years old and it’s been 6-7 years since we discovered that I am hypertensive. The doctors tried several drugs, and I have now been taking the same one for 3 years. The Blood Pressure Monitor allows me to make sure I keep a healthy BP, without having to write down anything, ever. It sounds like a detail, but it is crucial! I don’t see myself pulling out my notebook and write down my BP. This task is now performed in a few seconds.



And what do you think of the Withings Pulse, our activity tracker?

I have had it for a few months… Of course, there are people who will say that the distance that the Pulse measures is not very accurate. But it is very good to tell you how many steps you took. Which is very important! An example that illustrates this is the story of the stairs: when I have the choice between stairs and an elevator I always take the stairs. That’s when you start to see the “accountant” aspect of the Pulse: it also counts elevation!


What prompted you to buy a Pulse? Why did you pick this particular activity tracker?

I walked past a display with all the different trackers… I saw the bracelets…. It is the form of the Pulse that made ​​me choose it. I did not want a bracelet – it reminds me of Brazilian bracelets! It is the shape, light weight and minimum bulk of the Pulse that attracted me. I had also read some reviews and articles.


Did the Pulse bring to light certain things regarding your level of activity? Did you realize you were not active enough?

The Pulse allowed me to quantify. In retrospect it allowed me to make the connection between a given day, with specific activities and a corresponding number of steps. My wife and I then realized the impact that a choice can have: “If I go this way I will walk 2000 more steps and I will reach 10,000 steps.” This is good! The Pulse confirms the impressions I have of my day in terms of activity.



And do you track your sleep with the Pulse?

Yes, I use it consistently! I realized that I generally get around 3 hours of deep sleep and 3-4 hours of light sleep. I’ve noticed that if you exert yourself… If you take more than 10,000 steps for example, at the end of that day you feel more sleepy than usual.



Do you sometimes use the Pulse to measure your heart rate during the day when you do not have your Blood Pressure Monitor at hand?

Yes, it happens. I wear my Pulse by the belt, and when I want to do a sync, I pull it out and take this opportunity to measure my pulse. It does not exceed 60 beats per minute, as my medication is still active.


And now, what do you think of connected health and self-tracking?

Without falling into hypochondria, we must acknowledge that these are practical tools. Two years ago we did not know what they were… It takes time for everybody to get used to them.


And what do you think about the Health Mate app?

I like its simplicity. It loads fast and is functional right away. That matters. Using this mobile app has become very natural to me, but I must admit that 2 years ago I was really amazed to see how well it works.



How would you describe the Withings brand in 3 adjectives?

Design, connectivity and reliability. Design is important. Regarding the Blood Pressure Monitor for example, the metal tube is beautiful but it is also useful: it facilitates the handling of the object, it can help place the cuff right on the arm. So design meets functionality. It has obviously been well studied.



More testimonials ?

– Click here for a weight loss testimonial,
-Click here for a 360° health tracking testimonial,
-Click here for a “Withings x Partner app” testimonial
-Click here to learn how you can strengthen your heart using several Withings devices.
-Click here to learn how you can become more active using several Withings devices.
-Click here to learn how you can master your body’s weight using several Withings devices.
-Click here to learn how you can improve your sleep using several Withings devices.

Feel like sharing your health tracking experience?

Please send us your testimonial at: community@withings.com.