What if we told you that it was possible to get paid while you walk? It probably sounds like an impossible idea. But stay with us for a moment and let’s look at how you can make that a reality.
We’ve just reviewed the new Sweatcoin app and it can actually help you get healthy and feel great while also earning a few bucks (or more) on the side. Who knows, this new app may also give you a whole new outlook on personal fitness and getting in shape with the world’s most popular motivator—money!
Before you say that this is all too good to be true, let’s break down what you should know about the Sweatcoin App.
What is the SweatCoin app all about?
Let’s start with exactly what SweatCoin is and does. SweatCoin is an app that’s “first premise is that physical movement has economic value”.
Now, the way it actually works is it gets into the aptly named concept of “cryptocurrency” which we think ultimately means “money that is impossible to understand.” But instead of getting confused with terms like “blockchain” and “currency mining,” just roll with it and enjoy the potential benefits of this app.
And this app does have a few sweet benefits, especially if you think that earning prizes and getting healthy are benefits. (And we definitely do!)
Essentially, you download this app onto your smartphone. Then, the app monitors your outdoor steps using your phone’s GPS location and accelerometers, making it into a hi-tech pedometer.
But this app will record exactly how many steps you take. Then, it will transfer your steps into the company’s proprietary credits called Sweatcoins. (For the time being, it only tracks steps outside, but hopefully the programmers will work out the kinks so we can get our steps in around the office or on the treadmill at the gym.)
For every 1,000 steps that you take, you earn 0.95 SweatCoins. When you accumulate enough SweatCoins, you can cash them in for gift cards and prizes.
For instance, right now the main page for SweatCoin is advertising that you can get an iPhone 8 or $1,000 in PayPal cash for 20,000 SweatCoins or a trip to Borneo for 15,000 SweatCoins. You can also earn more SweatCoins by sending invites to friends and family members.
Members who are connected together can also gift SweatCoins to others, combining funds to earn prizes faster. (You may even see posts about people selling their SweatCoins online, something that the creators are fine with as they realize it will only help the app spread in popularity.)
Before you get too excited though, keep in mind that the phone or cash would require a little over 21 million steps while the trip would require almost 16 million steps. However, SweatCoin is counting on you taking the opportunity to earn money for something that you do naturally—in this case, walk. And it’s that incentive that is encouraging people to download the app.
SweatCoin App: First Impressions
This exercise-motivating app has been on the market for almost two years. It was created for the altruistic purpose of getting people to get off the couch, turn off the Netflix marathon, and move more.
Now, don’t get us wrong; the creators hope to monetize the app so they can turn a profit on your use of it. However, they freely admit they’re still working out kinks in the programming to make it more functional and improve it.
I have to admit, this makes doing what you’re already doing more fun and that in itself encourages the user to move more. You get out and exercise so you can satisfy the curiosity of what rewards will be available next and how much the user can really earn.
Exercising can be lonely though. That’s why many people who are trying to get healthy get themselves a “workout buddy” who can motivate them as well. So, I immediately had my teenage son download the app so we could compare it together.
I really want to see him get into healthy habits early on and I’d love to encourage him to walk more. Plus, it also gives us something to talk about as we challenge each other with. And there can even be a bit of bonding time on the track or in the neighborhood walking together.
If you are a parent of a teenager, you know how hard it is to get that time in together, so this is the perfect incentive to do just that. When you have friends and family helping out, you can transfer credits. This can make it way more enticing because you can get the best prizes a lot faster than working alone.
Overall, There Are Just a few things that my son and I weren’t really thrilled about with Sweatcoin.
Things We Didn’t Like
Getting Admonished When We Closed Out The App
To me, it seems a bit over dramatic to say that we “killed” it when we simply shut off all the apps on the phone. It comes across as though SweatCoin is so needy that it wants you to keep the app on all the time so it can capture all of your steps (which means more money).
The need to encourage more steps while also not forgetting the benefits of the app is not lost on me. But it does seem to be overkill (no pun intended) to admonish us if we have to turn the app off to conserve battery or data.
It Takes A LOT of SweatCoin (Or Invites) To Get Rewards That Seem Worthwhile
Like we said earlier, if you want the big prizes like an iPhone 8, it can take over 20 million steps. That’s like walking from the East Coast to the West Coast and back again…twice!
We get it, we are basically getting paid for doing what we would normally do anyway, so why be ungrateful when just the day before you loaded the app you were walking for free like a chump. But still, be prepared to put in some time before you start seeing rewards on this one.
It Seems To want A LOT of Personal Information When You First Sign Up.
I normally say “no bueno” to these types of requests, especially when it comes to my son’s information. I made the exception here, though, because we were both really curious about the app and figured that the NSA probably already had all this information anyway.
So what did we like about the Sweatcoin app? Here’s some of our top likes about the app:
- It doesn’t run your battery into the ground, at least not on the iPhones my son and I have. Normally, these apps that run all the time are a huge drain on your phone’s battery, but this one seems to run pretty well in the background without making you run looking for a charger every hour.
- It’s simple. There’s really nothing else that you have to do once you load the app and create your account. Sure, they give you a chance to interact with the app to earn more. For instance, you can check in each day, watch a short ad, and earn one SweatCoin. But if you don’t want to deal with these interactions, you can set it and forget it. JUST LEAVE IT RUNNING!
- There are lots of rewards on their website that are changed out frequently. Even though we’ve only been on the app for about a month, we are holding on to our coins for right now to see if they rotate in something soon that we really want to snatch up. While we personally didn’t see anything right now that is a must have, we can definitely see a lot of other people being interested in these prizes and can’t wait to see what’s next.
- The social aspect is really interesting. It’s neat to have friends and family members earning right along side of you. Being able to challenge one another takes the walking to another level, especially if you are competitive and don’t want your friend or significant other to have bragging rights. Plus, it’s really nice to be able to earn special rewards for invites and the best part is that you can give transfer of coins amongst those in your tribe.
Watch Out for Cheats
Of course, once you start monetizing something like letting people earn prizes for walking, there’s going to be those out there who try to “game the system.”
I mean, we are the same culture that came up with the hack of tying a cellphone to a ceiling fan so we could hatch our eggs faster on Pokemon, Go without having to get out and walk. So SweatCoin is having to work hard to stop people from trying to cheat the system and cash in on unearned prizes.
One way they’re doing this is by only tracking outdoor steps. This is easier because you can use a cellphone’s built-in step sensor to track movement. Then, they use an algorithm to take into account a person’s speed, consistency, and location.
In this way, they can detect anomalies and get rid of people claiming false data. Eventually, they hope to have the bugs worked out so they can track indoor steps (like when someone goes to the gym and gets on a treadmill) while also weeding out the fakes and scammers.
What’s There to Shop for?
There’s a lot of stuff you can “shop” for with your SweatCoins. In our opinion, the stuff is good and regularly changes out so it seems like we are going to hang around and see if anything rotates in that catches our eye.
Unfortunately, it can seem like the “good stuff” is out of range and that can be a real drag. Also, you will notice that most of the prizes have one of two different catches to them.
First, you will have to pony up the money to pay for shipping and handling. That’s fine, though, since you’re essentially getting the product for free. The other catch is that a lot of the prizes aren’t necessarily free goods, but instead are discounts on products. So instead of getting an item, you may only get $5 or $10 off that item.
The app definitely tries to push you towards certain products that they feature or to try to sell the app with the marquee items such as an iPhone or trips. Additionally, there are certain prizes that can only be earned through invitations that you send out to other friends and family. (You only get these reward points when they upload the app.)
Additionally, one reviewer has pointed out that the cash out option goes up in value the longer you hold on to the SweatCoins. If you were to cash out after earning 3,650 SweatCoins, you get $50. That means that each SweatCoin earns you a little more than a penny per coin.
However, if you build up 20,000 SweatCoins for the $1000 cash out, then your coins will be worth about five cents each. Obviously, the better value comes if you wait and let your account build up.
SweatCoin App: User Reviews
If you don’t believe us, then you can check out what some of these other people are saying about the app:
If you check these out, you’ll see that many of the people who have heard the stories of SweatCoin are skeptical to say the least. But these independent reviews have shown that they are overall positive about the app.
On the downside, there’s the suggestion that the company may provide your information to a third-party for marketing. (But then again, what app out there doesn’t already do that?)
Final Verdict on the SweatCoin App
Overall, this one is totally legit and my son and I both give it two thumbs up. However, we do have to put in a little caveat.
No, you aren’t going to be able to quit your day job and make a living just walking around all day. Nor will you earn an iPhone after a few weeks (or even months) of walking. But if it gets you off the couch and makes it a little more fun to get healthy, then this app is definitely worth it.