Home » Doro Watch in the test: Smartwatch for seniors with emergency call function

Doro Watch in the test: Smartwatch for seniors with emergency call function

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Doro Watch in the test: Smartwatch for seniors with emergency call function

A smartwatch for seniors that combines stylish elegance with uncompromising functionality – this is how the Swedish manufacturer Doro advertises its own Doro Watch. The watch is explicitly aimed at the older generation and therefore has a number of features that users over 65 in particular want, such as an emergency call function or a user interface that is particularly easy to read.

We took a closer look at the Doro Watch in the test and found out whether this watch is worth buying for seniors. We will look at the individual features and check whether the Doro Watch is better than other smartwatches or particularly suitable for older people.

Design

No experiments was apparently the motto at Doro when it came to the design of the Doro Watch. The smartwatch looks like a normal wristwatch – apart from the 1.28-inch touchscreen. The housing is made of plastic and there are two metal control buttons on the side. For the bracelet, Doro chose silicone, which is also common in other smartwatches, and the clasp is also made of plastic.

The visual impression of the Doro Watch remains solid, but upon closer inspection it also looks a bit cheap. The watch cannot keep up with the chic design of top dogs like Garmin and Polar or an Apple Watch. Overall, the look of the Doro Watch appears functional, but also pleasantly simple. The case is relatively flat and resembles that of a conventional wristwatch.

Operation & setup

When it comes to operation, the Doro Watch uses a touchscreen in combination with two control buttons. By default, the display shows an easy-to-read dial that is similar to that of a conventional wristwatch and only shows the current time. If you want, you can use the app to choose from a variety of other watch faces, which can then display additional information such as steps taken, calories burned or the date if necessary.

Unfortunately, the Doro Watch’s TFT display wasn’t entirely convincing in the test. Although the readability is really good thanks to the large symbols and the brightness (adjustable in three levels) is also impressive, the operation suffers from the slow response speed of the touch screen. The latter often jerks or reacts inaccurately, which sometimes impairs usability. A faster processor than the built-in ARM Cortex-M4F would probably have been a better choice.

However, we have nothing to complain about when it comes to setting up the Doro Watch. Here you can see that the manufacturer has seriously thought about what restrictions the target group of seniors might have when using the watch for the first time. When we first started the Doro Watch it only addressed us in English, but the associated app explained it Doro Companion all necessary steps in understandable language and in large font. Even older, less tech-savvy people shouldn’t have any major problems setting up the watch for the first time. The entire setup process only takes a few minutes and can be completed intuitively.

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activities

When tracking general activities and sports sessions, the Doro Watch offers a rudimentary selection of standard features. A pedometer is also on board, as is heart rate measurement, blood oxygen saturation monitoring and a display of calories burned. If you want, you can have the relevant data displayed both in the app and on the watch display. The measurement of the steps taken works quite reliably and only differs slightly from the measurement of our Garmin Fenix ​​6 control device (test report) and our manual counting.

In total, the Doro Watch only has four training profiles: running, walking, cycling and fitness. This means that the watch covers the main sports, but a separate profile for swimming sessions would have been desirable. After all, the Doro Watch is waterproof to a depth of 1.5 m (freshwater only) thanks to IPX68 certification.

The actual training recording is also limited to the essential functions in order to make the display easy to read. When running and walking, the watch shows the steps taken and calculates the distance in kilometers based on the determined value. It also measures the user’s heart rate during activity. When cycling and general fitness tracking, the Doro Watch only displays the measured heart rate.

You won’t find any special training features other than the measurements mentioned with the Doro Watch. There are no training plans or specific data such as cadence, recovery time or VO2 max. We have to do without an integrated GPS module. The watch is therefore only suitable for recording occasional sports sessions that involve monitoring your heart rate for the benefit of your own health.

But can pulse measurement really convince in practice? The Doro Watch, like other smartwatches, measures the heart rate using an optical sensor on the wrist. This works reliably in idle mode. The watch delivers credible measurements even with steady, low-intensity movement. However, the watch does not generally display the heart rate on the screen. Instead, we have to activate the measurement manually if we don’t currently have any training measurement activated. The measurement then takes a few seconds before the display shows the current value.

Only during training does the watch continuously measure the heart rate and then show it on the display. But as soon as we start a training session in which the watch has to measure strongly fluctuating values ​​(such as running intervals or HIIT), the sensor can no longer keep up. In this case, the values ​​differ from the actual heart rate by up to 30 beats.

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Doro Watch – photo series

Doro Watch – photo series

Sleep monitoring & other functions

Similar to recording training sessions, the Doro Watch only offers rudimentary sleep monitoring. The watch records the heart rate, measures the time when you fall asleep and wake up, and uses the pulse rate to calculate the duration of the individual sleep phases. The end result, which is rather moderately meaningful, can then be read in the app.

The other additional functions of the Doro Watch are likely to be much more interesting, especially for seniors. Among other things, the watch offers an inactivity alarm that reminds users to move. However, this requires a connection to the smartphone. If you want, you can be reminded to take a predetermined number of steps at regular intervals. Notifications can also be displayed on the watch’s display, but we can only use this function for emails. Activate SMS, missed calls, Instagram, Whatsapp and YouTube.

A special feature of the Doro Watch, which makes the watch particularly interesting for seniors living alone, is the emergency function. However, this feature has several catches. Unlike Garmin or the Apple Watch, the Doro Watch does not automatically register when users have an accident and, for example, have fallen. Instead, we have to press the emergency button on the watch case ourselves so that an appropriate alarm is triggered.

The second restriction: The emergency function only works if the Doro Watch is paired with a Doro smartphone such as the Doro 8200 (test report) or Doro 8100. Only then can the watch connect to the app via Bluetooth Response by Doro connect. If you don’t have a Doro smartphone, you can’t use the function.

Finally, the feature has a third catch: We can pre-define contacts in the app who will be contacted automatically when we press the emergency button. The person in question will then receive a notification with our location and can accept the alarm. If she does this, our smartphone switches directly to loudspeaker so that we can talk to our contact. However, there is obviously no way to make an emergency call directly to the relevant emergency call center. So if our emergency contact doesn’t answer the phone, we’re left on our own.

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battery pack

Doro specifies the capacity of the battery installed in the Doro Watch as 300 mAh. According to the manufacturer, one charge should last for up to 8 days. We were able to confirm this running time in the test with three sports sessions in one week and regular heart rate measurements – it took a good 7 days before we had to recharge the battery. The charging time is around two hours.

Preis

Doro is currently selling the Doro Watch at a price of 107 euros (RRP). The street price for the watch with a black strap is: 74 Euro (Price comparison), the model in pink costs 79 Euro and the Doro Watch with a green strap is already available for 60 Euro. Unfortunately, there are currently hardly any alternatives for seniors that offer similarly easy readability of the display thanks to large symbols.

Conclusion

When testing the Doro Watch, you can’t shake the feeling that the manufacturer simply wants to exploit an existing niche. Because there is hardly any competition in the market for smartwatches, which are explicitly aimed at seniors as a target group. Unfortunately, that’s exactly what you notice in every nook and cranny of the Doro Watch.

Although the watch offers some good approaches, such as the large symbols for better readability, they come to nothing rather quickly. The emergency button is not really a unique selling point of the Doro Watch, it requires a Doro smartphone and also offers a worse range of functions than other smartwatches with similar features.

There are also many little things that make other smartwatches (best list) and fitness trackers (best list) simply better than the Doro Watch: The display has a rough resolution and reacts slowly. The training function lacks essential profiles for sports such as swimming. And the health functions can be found just as well or better even in cheap fitness trackers from Huawei or Xiaomi.

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