Polar H10 heart rate monitor review: Accurate heart rate monitoring for Apple Watch users

Accurate heart readings for Apple users.

Polar H10
(Image: © Mike Sawh)

iMore Verdict

The Polar H10 is a standout heart rate monitor that will effortlessly connect to your Apple Watch to give you an exercise heart rate with a big accuracy boost.

Pros

  • +

    Accurate heart rate data

  • +

    Comfortable strap

  • +

    Easy to pair

Cons

  • -

    Keeps features simple

  • -

    Not the cheapest monitor available

  • -

    It’s not rechargeable

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One of the stats you’ll see during your Apple Fitness Plus workout is heart rate and is a good measure of how hard you’re actually working and keeping up. The Apple Watch is capable of delivering good heart rate data, but upping the intensity can see some indifferent results depending on the model. Pairing it up with something like the Polar H10 can make sure you're getting the best HR stats.

Polar H10: Price and availability

Polar H10

(Image credit: Mike Sawh)

The Polar H10 is pretty widely available so you don’t just have to pick it up directly from Polar. It costs $89.95/£76.50 and definitely sits at the more expensive end of the heart rate monitor chest strap market. 

It’s pricier than Polar’s own H9 chest strap £51.50/$59.95, which lacks the H10’s pro strap, ability to pair devices simultaneously and store a single training session. It’s also more expensive than rival chest strap sensors like the Wahoo Tickr X ($79.99/£64.99).

Polar H10: Specs and features

Polar H10

(Image credit: Mike Sawh)

The H10 offers Bluetooth and ANT+ connectivity, which means you can pair it to different connected gym equipment and does mean you can pair it with an Apple Watch, which is done via Bluetooth. It means you can swap Apple’s optical sensor for an ECG-style one that is considered the gold standard for measuring heart rate during exercise. 

It's powered by a lithium battery that can last up to 400 hours worth of training and it’s cheap and easy to remove the battery when you need to. It uses Polar’s new Pro strap with silicone spots to make sure the strap doesn’t slip when you start to sweat.

Polar H10: Build and Performance

Polar H10

(Image credit: Mike Sawh)

Chest straps aren’t for everyone but as far as comfort goes, Polar does more than most to ensure it sits securely but is also not overly tight, which can be the case with some chest straps I’ve tested. Pairing with the Apple Watch is nice and easy too, I’ve used it with the Watch Ultra and the Series 6 and connecting over Bluetooth was pretty seamless and suffered no dropouts. 

While it’s nice to see Polar add some colour in the strap department, it’s not something that’s going to be on show unless you’re the kind of runner that goes shirtless. Most importantly, the data is good, feels accurate and feels much more reliable for high-intensity-style running. 

Polar H10: Competition

Polar H10

(Image credit: MIke Sawh)

There are a lot of heart rate monitor chest strap options out there. There’s also heart rate monitors that live on the arm that perform well too. Polar’s heritage lies in heart rate and the H10 is considered the best in the business. You can definitely get good HR data for running from Wahoo, Garmin among others, but for simplicity, performance and comfort, the H10 ticks all the key boxes.

Polar H10: Should you buy it?

Polar H10

(Image credit: Mike Sawh)

You should buy it if…

  • You don’t trust your Apple Watch heart rate sensor
  • You enjoy high intensity running workouts
  • You find chest straps comfortable

You shouldn’t buy it if…

  • You don’t pay close attention to your heart rate stats
  • You want to spend less. There are other options.

Polar H10: Verdict

Polar H10

(Image credit: Mike Sawh)

The Polar H10 is one of the best heart rate monitors in the business that puts accuracy first. While the Apple Watch offers some of the best heart rate from the wrist, it’s not infallible. Pairing it up with the H10 will make sure you get the best data, even when you’re running at your quickest. It’s easy to pair to the Apple Watch, keeps things simple in terms of features and really focuses on making sure you get the best data. It’s not cheap, but it’s worth the money if you value accuracy during your Fitness+ sessions. 

Michael Sawh

Michael is a freelance journalist who has covered consumer technology for over a decade and specializes in wearable and fitness tech. Previously editor of Wareable, he also co-ran the features and reviews sections of T3, and has a long list of bylines in the world of consumer tech sites.


With a focus on fitness trackers, headphones, running wearables, phones, and tablet, he has written for numerous publications including Wired UK, GQ, Men's Fitness, BBC Science Focus, Metro and Stuff, and has appeared on the BBC Travel Show. Michael is a keen swimmer, a runner with a number of marathons under his belt, and is also the co-founder of YouTube channel The Run Testers.