The Accu-Chek Guide is a compact meter with a large display that offers deep features presented with the greatest simplicity. From the Bluetooth connected app support to non spill vials, there's plenty to like about the Accu-Chek Guide, and it ranks among our best glucose meters. Accu-Chek has been around for years and as such has succeeded in refining its blood glucose meter to offer the combination of superb accuracy, portability and depth of detail.
The test strips are of particular note since they're all about you only having to use one to get the results needed. That should all equate to a clear picture of your sugar levels with minimal hassle and pain, and lower cost.
Accu-Chek Guide review: Design and portability
Memory: 720 test results
Results: Under 4 seconds
Blood sample size: 0.6 microlitres
Battery: Two CR2032
- Compact size
- Large lit display
- Button controls
The Accu-Chek Guide may look more like a personal nav device from a few years back but it manages to strike the balance between portability and capability. At its most simple your reading is clear and obvious thanks to a larger display, which makes the all important number the largest thing on the screen.
That screen is a backlit LCD so while it's clear enough in terms of contrast for a daylight viewing, even in sunlight, it'll also work at night. The lack of color might not be for everyone in this day and age but since it's not really needed that can be seen as a smart, battery-saving move by Accu-Chek. If you worry that you'll struggle to read it, something like the Prodigy Voice will even read results to you.
The meter features a handy eject button for removing strips. Since these strips are so small this is a really nice extra which allows you to pop the strip out directly into the trash without the need to touch the stained end.
Accu-Chek Guide review: App and connectivity
- Bluetooth connectivity
- Smart app support
- Automatic sync
The Accu-Chek Guide has not one but two apps to support it. Since the meter itself has Bluetooth, connection to a smartphone is super easy and doesn't take up much battery, so using it makes sense as an easier way to view and analyse your patterns.
The Accu-Chek Connect app lets you quickly get access to your glucose readings which are transmitted automatically. You can then see this in clear graphs that make patterns you might otherwise miss easy to spot. This also allows you to automatically share that data, ideal if your doctor wants to keep an eye on your glucose levels. Since you can make notes for things like meals, exercise, medications and more, the data is contextually useful too. It's not quite as fully-features as the Dario LC or the Contour Next One, but it's very thorough.
The mySugr App also works with the Guide meter. This is a more modern app that uses bright colours and clear visuals to display all your data. While this includes things like CSV reports and logging you'll need to upgrade to Pro for things like photo uploads, smart searches, blood sugar reminders, multi-device-syncing and more. This is a few bucks per month, or make a saving, by paying yearly.
Accu-Chek Guide review: Port light and battery
- Ideal for night use
- Doesn't massively affect battery life
The addition of a port light is a great idea, as it allows you to use the meter in the dark without fumbling around to find where to insert the strip. Thanks to the addition of that LCD backlit display, this is a total in-the-dark solution meaning you can use it anytime you need. Many modern glucometers have a port light, including the Fora 6 Connect.
The port light automatically illuminates the test strip port whenever you insert a strip so you don't need to fumble about for buttons either. OF course if it's really dark then you can feel for the bulging OK/On button to activate the light manually. The light stays on until you insert the strip and apply the blood.
The meter takes two CR2032 coin cell batteries, which come included. Since this should last for well over a thousand tests and, because the batteries are cheap and easy to replace, battery life shouldn't be a concern.
Accu-Chek Guide review: Sampling and accuracy
- Non-spill vial
- Larger application area
- 95% results within 10% accuracy standard
Accuracy, as an important factor, can be relied upon with the Accu-Chek Guide. This is thanks to it proving in clinical labs tests that the lowest glucose readings, below 75 mg/dL still gives an accuracy of 100% of results being within +/-10% standard with two thirds within roughly 5 mg/dL points. Everything above that low threshold are within the current 20% accuracy standard with 95% within the tighter 10% standard. So, in conclusion, it's plenty accurate.
They key here is that application of that sample is easy so you don't have to worry about there being too little blood anyway. Alright, some meters do require less than 0.6 microliters, but this offers superb accuracy even with less blood.
While the test strips are small and a little fiddly, the actual application area is two to four times larger than ten other brand name strips. Broad yellow edges and a clear blood icon help to remind you where to deposit - which was helpful as this varies from strip brand to strip brand.
The strip contained is worth a mention too as it's a SmartPack vial with a flip top and - this is great - no spilling. It's designed so you can tip the entire package upside down and een shake it and no strips will fall out. It's designed to release one strip at a time. This combined with the eject button on the meter itself make for a super simple and efficient way to use test strips. As long as the strips are initially secure in their individual grooves this works perfectly.
Should you choose the Accu-Chek Guide?
The Accu-Chek Guide is an excellent glucometer that's paired with a superb strip holding SmartPack. The accuracy of the unit is excellent, while blood collection is easy thanks to clearly marked strips and the addition of an auto-on strip light.
Bluetooth connectivity and app support from not one but two app options makes data analysis clear and easy. In fact the whole unit is easy to use right from the start. Some might find the lack of colour display or basic design aesthetics less pleasing but in reality these aren't massively important factors to most people. While Accu-Chek makes a few meter options we found Guide to be one of the best for all round ease of use, smart functionality and portability. The simplicity also makes this an ideal glucometer for anyone new to blood glucose measuring.