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263 of 267 people found the following review helpful
on February 13, 2012
PLEASE DON'T WASTE YOUR MONEY...THIS PRODUCT IS MORE COSTLY THEN IT APPEARS!

I make lots of purchases on Amazon but seldom if ever write a review, however, this product was such a ripoff, I had to put the word out.

I purchased the Biggest Loser Slimcoach after seeing the item being promoted on the show, checking it out on Amazon.com and also viewing the website for further details on the product. Unfortunately, I feel this item, which is sold with one year access to the website is a sale based on deceptive practices. The Slimcoach website clearly shows screen images of what type of feedback you can receive from their website. Of course, the assumption is the access and information is included in the 1 year membership that comes with the Slimcoach because no where on the site does it talk to an Advanced Membership which costs and additional $69.95 for the year to actually have access to daily information on your workouts, burn levels and progress.

After not being able to find the icons for the more detailed reports, I wrote customer service at the Slimcoach site and was then informed, if I wanted access the screenshots shown I would have to fork out another $69.95. After writing them back that this practice appears to be a "bait and switch" form of advertising and please respond to this type of practice, I never heard from them again.

In addition to all of this, the website is slow, doesn't work with Internet Explorer because Silverlight (a Microsoft Add On) keeps thinking the add on is not installed (it does work with Firefox) and the limited amount of information available and lack of integration of their nutition information makes this a difficult and clunky website to work.

Sadly, this could be a great product if someone had just taken the time to develop fully before rushing to release (at least it looks like a rush job to be) and selling something of poor quality under the Biggest Loser name. Shame on your Biggest Loser!
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95 of 96 people found the following review helpful
on February 10, 2012
I purchased this in a store (before there were any reviews)on January 20th. I wore it for 10 days. It has now been returned to said store. I had considered three similar products to purchase, but I ended up getting this one because of The Biggest Loser's endorsement. Never again. Here are my complaints/issues:

1. The website is SLOW (as Christmas). And your complaints are met with "we're working on it", or "give it time".
2. To get true accuracy in the unit, you have to purchase a chest strap (for another $60+), then to GET the info from the chest strap, you have to purchase the Advanced membership (for another $80, I believe). So that's around $280... I think I'd rather have something like a body bugg for that price!
3. Once I activated everything, I got on the message boards. MOST were complaining about how they felt they had "purchased an overpriced pedometer". I agree. Unfortunately you can't see any of that until after you've laid down your $140 for the unit(including taxes for me).
4. They told me "It takes a week for it to track your activity level to give you accurate goals." BULL! It gave me a goal of "30 heart activity minutes" the first week. Fine. But my actual totals were 40+ per day (meaning I worked out for 40 minutes per day). But guess what? On day 8 (the beginning of week 2), AFTER it had supposedly figured out my activity level so it would give me more of a challenge, it STILL had my goal set at 30 minutes/day. Wow! What a motivator!!! (*she says dripping with sarcasm*)
5. I was also told that it doesn't even use the calorie log for the calculation - so how much do I need to burn?!?
6. I met my goals (ie: "I went green") by 9am EVERY day I wore the Slimcoach. So, theoretically, I could have laid on the couch for the rest of the day - I had met my goals!
7. The ONLY thing I'll miss is a couple of people I met on the message boards.

I had such high hopes for the Slimcoach. I wanted a motivator to make the think about doing more doing the day. Funny enough, the only motivation I received from it is to write this review....

UPDATE / FYI (2-12-12): When I returned the Slimcoach, I purchased the Fitbit. I have been wearing it for a couple of days now, and it already blows the Slimcoach away! Look at its reviews. I haven't written a review on it yet (need more time/experience with it), but it already has over 400 reviews that are very favorable (4 1/2 stars overall). I use it with LoseIt! for my calorie logging on my iTouch, and it all integrates seamlessly and gives me tons of feedback.... for free (no "annual membership" fee!!!!).

FINAL UPDATE (2-25-12): I've been using the Fitbit for a few weeks now, and I LOVE it! My recommendation: Sign up on the Fitbit website - you can do this before you ever purchase it. That will allow you to look at what it tracks, and you'll be blown away - it's FREE! (You can get an advanced membership, but I find that what it already tracks for free is the info I want anyway.... Yay!) The Slimcoach was such a disappointment that I came close to not getting anything else, but I'm so glad I did.

BTW: I also contacted NBC & Biggest Loser to voice my complaints & disappointment for endorsing this product that doesn't deliver what it promises to. I've never heard back from them.... thankfully, I'm not holding my breath, because I have a sneaky feeling they've gotten a ton of the same type letters recently.....
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95 of 98 people found the following review helpful
on February 1, 2012
I tried to like this product but sent it back. As mentioned in other reviews - the website is HORRIBLE. Works like an old dial-up connection in the 80's. It takes, seriously, about 60 seconds to load EACH page and refresh after each click. I don't even know if my product worked well because the website was so slow and non-user friendly that I returned it in 3 days. As a prior review says, also - I emailed user support with no response. I can't believe NBC and the Biggest Loser would endorse this product without first researching and making sure the support was there. I ordered a Gruve yesterday and it should be here tomorrow. Hopefully the support is better there. What a complete disappointment this "coach" is- I would rate this a zero if I could.
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66 of 70 people found the following review helpful
Here is our summary review of our Biggest Loser SlimCoach. We are also keeping daily notes on how well the device functions, so feel free to ask any questions you want, and we can provided detailed responses on our experience with the unit.

First, a bit of background. My boyfriend and I have been writing about exercise / weight loss for over ten years now. We have thoroughly tested a variety of scales, blood pressure devices, exercise devices, heart chest monitors, watch monitors, pedometers, cholesterol testers, and more. So we greatly enjoy the "scientific query" involved in figuring out if devices do what they claim to do and comparing them with other devices.

We purchased our Biggest Loser SlimCoach with our own funds in order to do this examination on this unit. We watch the Biggest Loser series on TV and were curious just how well this device worked.

The box that arrives is fairly small - about the size of a thick paperback. It has very little in it. The SlimCoach device itself is fairly fragile plastic and is about the height of a business card, and shorter in width. It's about a finger thickness deep. You also get a plastic belt clip, a micro-USB cable, a short nylon lanyard, a postcard with your ID code, and a slim warranty booklet. That's all. There is no software or user guide provided.

In order to get started you absolutely must go to their website and download the software. When prompted, you then connect your SlimCoach to your computer via the standard micro-USB cable to initialize it. Your purchase provides you with a year access to the website. It's critical to note that once that expires, if you choose not to renew, then in essence your SlimCoach no longer becomes helpful. You will not be able to upload the raw data from the unit to their website to view your statistics. So you constantly need that live web account in order to keep using your unit.

The software installation and account setup is fairly quick and easy. You put in a few basic statistics to create your account - gender, height, weight, and so on. Then you can customize what you want to do with your future. You can set a designated weight goal as well as a rate of 1-4 pounds a week to lose.

There's a full menu area where you set up the foods you eat each day. It's fairly well designed, allowing you to store favorite foods for easy access and to set up meal plans. You can track not only the basics like carbs and calories but also more detailed items like trans fats and sodium. You can set your own limits for each item. On one hand you have to enter the foods one by one, but on the other hand their library of known foods is immense and once you get your favorites set up it's fairly quick to choose from them and be set for the day.

So far in our testing the website seems fairly easy to use and provides helpful information. While it might be a bit sluggish at times, the data input went fairly quickly and once it was set there was no reason to tweak it much after that. Really, we are using the website just as a data tracking system, not as something to surf on for hours.

The unit itself, while a bit flimsy, is also easy to use and seems to be responsive. We will post more detailed information on the unit's comparison with our other devices, including our heart rate monitors, in a short while. In the meantime feel free to ask questions! So far the unit gets a 5/5 rating - with the caveat that you have to understand that you are locked into paying them eternally for its usage. So think of it as a NetFlix account, where you keep paying each month (or each year) to get continued access to the system.

UPDATE AFTER ONE WEEK:

The unit has held up nicely, including going into a sauna. It is so lightweight that even while golfing it is completely unnoticeable (which is of course important). It gets great kudos for doing its job in a very unobtrusive manner. Compared against a variety of pedometers and other tracking devices it is accurate.

The website's nutrition area was useful and easy to use. Updating and maintaining daily menus was simple. Having the stats there helped motivate more healthy eating. One downside is that the stats for a given day show you red and green as a simple color of reaching or not reaching a goal. So for example if my goal was to eat 40% of my daily intake as protein, it would calculate that to grams and then show me red all day long for protein until I crossed that level. I get no indicator if I'm close or far from my goal - I.e. should I eat a lot of protein at lunch or just a little. A bar graph would be much more helpful, to glance at and know what my remaining meals should look like.

The website's exercise area does its job. You tell the system what types of exercises you enjoy, and they let you know what you'd need to do in each to reach your calorie goals. Their options are a wide range of activities from walking the dog to canoeing to gym equipment. So whatever it is you enjoy, the system will offer ideas with that in mind.

We were a bit disappointed on day week-plus-one. The system had kept saying it would revamp our goals and assign us an "animal symbol" once we got through the initial evaluation week. Instead, the daily calorie goals once we crossed that point were exactly the same as they'd been before. The animal symbol was a snail - their lowest - even though we did over 2 1/2 times their set goals every day. We almost wonder if everyone starts out as a snail so they can "show progress" in subsequent weeks.

UPDATE AFTER ONE MONTH:

OK, downgrading this to 3 stars, and it could drop lower. Literally the day after I posted our one week summary, the unit failed completely. After working with their tech support we had to send it back. We wonder if it was the sauna that did it, even though the temperature in the sauna was clearly within its operating range. So with the new unit we did NOT bring it into the sauna. It went for daily two hour workouts in a gym, though, on treadmills, ellipticals, and so on. This time it lasted a month before it failed. I think it failed at the 28 day mark. Since it was primarily being exposed to indoor activities, it wasn't rain or sun or dirt or anything else. The only thing we can guess was that it was sweat, since the plastic is not well sealed and sweat could easily get into it.

At this point to test it we ordered a THIRD SlimCoach - this one in black instead of white (we're testing every theory here). So we've had both of them at this point. Now rather than having it go with the gym-guy it's staying with the dancing-girl so it's not even leaving the house. I do Wii dancing as my exercise. And I don't sweat like gym-guy does. So we'll see how long it lasts in this situation.

So if we assume that the physical unit does fine with me, after a month of use we like and dislike the website interface. The nutrition tracker is great - but it isn't used in their calculations. That is, it's fantastic for knowing all the stats of what you eat each day. But in terms of their goals and progress, they completely ignore those numbers you enter. Instead they solely go with your weight you report and the calories the unit tracks. So they claim you ate whatever the difference between the two is. Which makes absolutely no sense, because, as a female, at least a quarter of my life I'm dealing with water gain issues from my period. So their data is inaccurate a quarter of the time for me. Also, they won't let me hand enter calories I've burned. So if I go kayaking and don't wear the unit to keep it safe (since it appears a half drop of water can kill the thing) then all of that is now "invisible calorie burn" to their system. They trust me to enter my weight accurately. They trust me to enter every item of food I eat every day accurately. Why can't they trust me to enter my other caloric burn information accurately? That makes the online system less than fully accurate for my tracking.

Also - and this is really bizarre - their numbers don't seem to add up. I started at 135 pounds. I told it I wanted to lose 2 pounds a week. They told me my body naturally burns 1350 calories a day just by existing. So they asked me to add another 160 calories a day of activity to that, and to eat 1200 calories a day. That's a net calorie deficit of 310 calories a day. At that rate it would take me 12 days to lose a single pound. How does this equate to losing 2 pounds a week?

And related to that, their goal chart is inaccurate. They show you a visual graph of how you start with slow activity and work up to higher level of activities over the time period. They tell you how many calories to burn along the way and what your base metabolic rate (that 'natural burn' of your body) is. However, for the entire time period - let's say 3 months - they use your STARTING BMR value. Your BMR is based on your size - which is shrinking! So at the end of the time period your BMR will be *lower* because of your weight loss. So the chart becomes inaccurate on day 2 and becomes more and more inaccurate as time progresses.

I will post more after I use this unit for a few weeks, to see if it dies as quickly with me as it did with gym-guy.

We kept far more detailed notes than this; this is necessarily brief to keep this review manageable. Let me know if you have questions.

FINAL UPDATE: It appears the website is completely down, which makes this unit completely non-functional. It is just a piece of plastic now. If someone knows otherwise, please let me know.
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45 of 48 people found the following review helpful
on February 1, 2012
I wanted to love this device and I admit it has real potential but.......

1. the web site is about the clunkiest and slowest i have used....ever....it takes forever to load a page
2. the information is very sparse and not helpful so it is impossible to get questions answered
3. there is a premium membership but getting anyone to speak to it and the benefits is an impossible task
4. it has caloric balance icon but this doesn't' use your food logged against your energy burned to give you the result, instead it uses your weight loss to tell you that and the results are for 30 days. It is useless to use their food log as it doesn't impact the numbers at all and is so slow you might as well use another more user friendly site.
5. the posts that the end user log are full of frustrated people that are angry with biggest loser for sponsoring this product

bottom line. save your money
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on February 9, 2012
I usually find endorsements on The Biggest Loser to be very helpful. The show introduced me to the Bodybugg which has helped me tremendously over the past year but this SlimCoach is the BIGGEST waste of time and money I think I've ever had in recent history. The website is terribly slow, and the information and tools on it seems to be set up as if it is catered to children.(It uses ridiculous pictures of animals and dumb graphics to describe your lifestyle), and the nutrition log is a waste of time because it does not factor into the equation when it comes to what it configures for you to burn.

All it can tell me to do is burn 250 calories a day to make the circle turn green which indicates you've reached your daily target. How is that challenging? I can burn 250 calories just sitting down typing this. I bought this product to motivate me to reach my daily potential and hopefully give me a more accurate account of how many calories I am burning in a day but it was not doing that. It even tells you in their user guide to give it a week to "learn your lifestle" and in doing so "going green" would become alot harder to do. A week has passed and it was still giving me very low calorie expectations. What a joke!

Don't waste your money, a product costing over $100 can do better than this in all areas. The Biggest Loser should cut ties with this product before they lose their credibility.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on February 2, 2012
I was debating between the Fitbit and the Slimcoach. I found a great deal online for 69.99 plus 10 dollars for shipping. When I tried to pay for it, I had some trouble using my Visa Gift Card. So I called Slimcoach (Mytrak) to see if I could order it over the phone. After playing phone tag and punching in numbers, I finally got to a live person a few days later. Only to be asked if I could provide my PHONE records so that they could honor the price, because that deal was no longer valid. When I explained the issue, I was told they couldn't honor that price but gave me another code for 20.00 higher.

My thoughts, if its that hard to purchase a product from a company and they won't honor the price even though I had called multiple times, do I really want to buy a product that if I need technical support is most likely going to be twice as hard to speak with someone? So in the end I'm buying the FitBit.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on July 4, 2013
If you order this item, BE AWARE! that you will not be able to activate an account, making it unusable!
The company that was providing the online support for the SlimCoach and/or the SmartCoach (Medipattern Corporation) is filing bankruptcy, and as of July 8, 2013 will no longer provide service, making this device basically non-usable. After a little over a week of use, I received a message from Medipattern informing me they would be discontinuing service, so I called Amazon & they are in process of providing a refund for me. Amazon has been very considerate & helpful. --I'm ordering a FitBit Zip to take the place of this item...also from Amazon.

PS, I was mostly liking my SlimCoach, but the FitBit looks like it will be even better, since it sync's via Bluetooth--no plugging it in every night!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
I started a new diet & thought this would be great. Unfortunately, it ISNT easy to use & the website to register it does NOT EXSIST! I am so terribly disappointed. I will have to send this back. Dont waste your money or your time on this product. I like Amazon, but they need to quit selling this item!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on December 8, 2012
My husband bought this for me as a gift because I had been looking at it. Got it today, jumped online to register it but little did we know that the link on the paper to register it does not exist anymore. The Biggest Loser website does not even know what it is. I could not find anywhere to register it or the activation code so of course you guessed it I am not able to use it! I am very sad that they are still being sold if they are not being supported anymore.
UPDATE
So this company has very little phone support. The registering issue they say is known issue and they are working on it so I am now able to use it but not able to see my progress on my login page. They say we will have the free one year started over for the days it was unusable. Very slow progress. Sad.
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