ALPHA FAQs

Are Mio products accurate for activities like weight lifting, crossfit, and high intensity interval training?

It depends! Mio products work by using an optical sensor to monitor the volume of blood in your veins. Your blood volume changes as your heart beats, and sophisticated algorithms are applied to determine which part of that change is due to your heart pumping blood, and which part is due to arm movement. Mio algorithms have been refined over the course of several years, and if you're running, cycling, or doing some other type of rhythmic activity, your Mio device quickly recognizes the activity and is able to provide an EKG-accurate heart rate signal.
 
If you're performing an activity that involves more erratic arm motions (such as playing tennis, boxing, or doing intervals of plyometrics), your heart rate signal is more difficult to filter. Often in these types of workouts you're more interested in monitoring your heart rate during the recovery period between sets anyway, and if that's the case your Mio device will be great! But, if you need to look at your wrist and see your exact heart rate right in the middle of a set/round/interval, optical heart rate monitoring may not be the best technology match for you. Many Mio customers have fantastic results during these kinds of activities, but we can't guarantee that heart rate monitoring will be as accurate as it is with running or cycling.
 
To make sure you're getting the best possible results, try these tips:
  • Move your Mio device further up your arm so that it doesn't get in the way of wrist movements
  • Make sure your device has a snug fit around your arm. It doesn't need to be extremely tight; just make sure it doesn't move around
  • Try wearing your Mio device with the sensor on the underside of your forearm, instead of the outside of your wrist

Are there any health risks associated with this technology?

Some people wonder whether the light beams from the two light sources might damage their eyes, or perhaps even their skin.

The risk of such damage has been studied extensively, and is laid down in so-called safety standards.  Compared to these standards, the light level from the ALPHA is very much below any safety limit.  The green light sources may seem very bright, but they cannot damage your eyes; not even from a 1 cm distance. In fact, your eyes would not be damaged by 1,000 such light sources, even if you managed to place them at a 1 cm distance, all at the same time.

It should be clear that the skin, being much less susceptible to damage than the eyes, is also completely safe.

Can I swim with my Alpha?

The Alpha has water resistance up to 30 meters (WR30M). This means that you may swim with the device, but we urge users to understand that this does not mean the device is waterproof. Do not press any buttons while submerged in water, or the device will be more susceptible to water damage.

Can the Alpha calculate my calories burned?

The Alpha is designed to emit a BTLE signal to a supported smart device, such as an Android phone or iPhone. Applications within these smart devices can record data, such as distance, calories, etc. The Alpha itself cannot perform calorie calculations.

Does the Alpha do alerts or notifications from my phone?

The Alpha will send heart rate data to a compatible smartphone. Apps can be developed to do all sorts of interesting things with that data, and may be able to emit alerts and notifications through the smartphone speaker(s) or ear buds. However, the Alpha is not designed to accept incoming data transfer, and will not accept alerts or notifications from the paired device. 

How do I pair my Mio device to an app like Strava, MapMyRun, Endomondo, RunKeeper, or any other third-party smartphone app?

A: Make sure that your smartphone is compatible, and follow the steps below!

  1. Take both your smartphone and Mio device to a place at least 30m (100 feet) away from any other Bluetooth devices.
  1. Turn on heart rate monitoring on your Mio device, and place your Mio device within 1 meter (3 feet) to your smartphone—the closer the better!
  1. Make sure Bluetooth is enabled on your smartphone.

For iPhones, go to Settings > Bluetooth, and make sure that Bluetooth is 'On'.

For Android phones, open the Bluetooth settings menu on your device and enable the setting that makes your device visible to other Bluetooth devices.

Note: Pairing must be completed within the app settings, and not in your smartphone’s Bluetooth settings. Make sure that Bluetooth is enabled, but don't connect anything directly within the Bluetooth settings!

  1. Open the app that you would like to pair with and add your Mio device as a heart rate sensor. The setup process varies by app, but the option to add a heart rate sensor is typically found in the Settings menu.  

Repeat the above pairing process any time you use a new app. After initial pairing is complete, your Mio device will automatically be recognized each time you use that app.

Troubleshooting tip: Your Mio device can't connect to more than one app at a time. If an app can't find your Mio device, make sure to force close any heart rate monitoring apps (including Mio GO) that may be running in the background.

How do I pair the ALPHA to my smartphone?

The ALPHA will pair with your BLTE or BT 4.0 device while it is gathering your heart rate. To pair, simply load your smartphone application and locate the setting or option to add a heart rate monitor device. While your smartphone is searching for the device, "ALPHA" will populate on screen. Select the device, and your ALPHA is now paired! 

What happens to my ALPHA after 300 charge cycles?

The battery in ALPHA is guaranteed to operate at 100% capacity for 300 complete charge cycles, meaning that you can charge the battery from completely empty to completely full 300 times. If you charge your device every day but just a little bit to top it off, you will get far more than 300 charges.
 
Even after 300 charges the battery will continue to function normally, but the capacity will begin to diminish. At around 500 charges the battery life will be about 80% as long as it was when it was new.
 
In summary, you don't need to worry about your ALPHA dying on you! After 5 years you will need to start charging more frequently, but the battery should continue operating just fine.

What phones support the Bluetooth Low Energy (4.0) protocol?

This growing list contains the current Bluetooth Smart and Bluetooth Smart Ready products available now.

Bluetooth Smart & Smart Ready products 

What’s the difference between Mio LINK and Mio ALPHA?

While both of these wrist-based heart rate trackers use the same patented Mio Continuous Technology to track accurate heart rate without the need for a chest strap, there are a few differences between products.  You can find a full list of them on our website’s product comparison chart.

Which apps are best to use with Mio ALPHA?

A. Apple AppStore

Some of the most popular fitness apps people use with their Mio LINK include: Strava, Wahoo, MapMyRun, MapMyFitness, Runkeeper, MiCoach, Endomondo, and more.

 

B. Google Play

While Android app compatibility depends on whether or not your Android device meets the requirements explained on the Device Compatibility page on our website, Runkeeper PRO, MapMyFitness (and family), and BLE Heart Rate Monitor tend to be the best apps to sync with your Mio ALPHA heart rate wristband. 

Will the Alpha interfere with my pacemaker?

We recommend researching whether your pacemaker receives interference from Bluetooth devices. The Alpha sends a BTLE or BT 4.0 signal when it is gathering your heart rate. We strongly advise consulting your doctor for more information about your specific pacemaker.

Please note that the Alpha also contains four small magnets that help it to connect properly with the charger. The stats for the four small included magnets are as follows:

Br (KGs): 10.8-13.2
Hcb (Koe): Less than or equal to 11.5%
Hcj (Koe): Less than or equal to 12%
(BH) Max (MGOe): 33-36 

Will the Alpha work with my Android or iPhone?

The Alpha has the ability to communicate over BT 4.0 protocols. It sends out its data using the standard Heart Rate Profiles to any devices that support these protocols and Profiles.

While it won't work "out of the box" to iPhone 4s, iPhone 5/5s or Android it will work with applications that support the BT 4.0 Heart Rate Profile.

iPhone apps that support BT4.0 HR Profile include:

  • MapMyFitness
  • Runkeeper
  • Strava

Android apps that support BTLE HR Profile include:

  • Android apps are still being optimized for BT 4.0 pairing. We appreciate your patience.