If you want a simple blood glucose tester that makes taking measurements straight forward, while saving you a buck or two on price, then the True Metrix could be the perfect unit for you. Not only is the upfront cost low but the test strips are also affordable. Despite the low pricing you get an accurate meter which requires no coding and offers a triple sense accuracy system. The results are quick and the display is large and clear, although it lacks app support for more in depth data analysis quickly.
Despite the lack of app support - which does come with the Air version - we still think this is one of the best glucose meters around in 2020. You can upload data to software on a computer if you want to track more than the 500 results memory that the unit itself can store. But you do get averages on the machine itself for fast looks at the last days and weeks.
Event tagging is a nice feature to give context to your results as you look back. The small sample size required is also of big appeal since it means you don't need to lance too deep to get an accurate reading right away.
True Metrix review: Design and portability
Memory: Up to 500 results
Results: Four seconds
Blood sample size: 0.5 microliters
- Strip release button
- Large display
While the True Metrix might not have a stand-out design, it does what you need. Primarily it's compact and lightweight for ease of mobility in a pocket or bag. That unit is largely taken up by the display meaning you get a clear and well defined display for your reading at a glance, even if you're struggling to see clearly in the moment.
Interactions with the machine are minimal with no need to press anything to turn on or turn off the meter. You can select an on-screen icon to tag an exercise and since there's plenty of screen space it's easy to see one from the other.
The lack of backlight could be annoying in dark situations, where you end up using your phone light to read the screen. Something like the Fora 6 Connect has a good light, so consider this as an alternative here. But for the rare time that occurs, the lack of light is also a good thing when it comes to battery life from the coin cell. The addition of an eject button is a nice feature as this not only makes strip removal clean but also means you don't need to think about powering off to save battery life.
True Metrix review: Memory and connectivity
- 500 results memory
- PC connection
The True Metrix meter is able to store 500 results on its memory meaning if you want to keep longer term records you'll need to export them. This can be done using a cable and computer. Yup, this is pretty old fashioned nowadays when most monitors come with a supporting app and Bluetooth wireless connectivity.
That said, this monitor is about keeping things minimal and simple. As a result you can access basic trends right there on the monitor, to save you uploading if that's a hassle that you won't realistically stick to. Averages are available for seven, 14, 30, 60 and 90 day sections so viewing patterns is easy enough right there on the meter.
The PC connection requires software installation that comes on a CD or, thankfully, as a download, since many people don't even have CD drives on their machines these days. It's quite fussy, and getting a system like the Contour Next One will give you much more control over your data.
True Metrix review: App and software
- View patterns and trends
- Set target ranges
The True Metrix can connect to a PC via a USB cable or the addition of a docking station, which is sold separately. This allows you to upload your data, not only as a back-up, but as a way to analyse trends over longer periods and in a clearer way on a big screen.
The TrueManager app, as it's called, is able to let you set target ranges for multiple testing times so you can see the effects of actions. This works well since you're able to tag test results with things like exercise or meal times and so on, which gives great context and actual ideas for potential areas that can be improved.
You can use the software to view patterns and trends in your blood glucose results but also print off reports for sharing with your healthcare team. This isn't as good as many meters which have apps (our top pick, the Dario LC has a superb, all-round app solution) that let you share your data online, but at least this has the option despite this being a very budget friendly device.
All the report options are: Summary Report, Glucose Trend Report, Logbook Report, Extended Logbook Report, Conformance Report, Modal Day Report and Modal Week Report.
True Metrix review: Sampling and accuracy
- Triple sense accuracy
- 0.5 microliter sample size
The True Metrix sample strips are more affordable than a lot of the competition yet offer top-level performance. This is thanks to triple sense technology which is the company's way of saying the strips require no coding yet still offer detection, analysis and correction all in one.
Sampling couldn't be easier, pop a strip in the meter, it will beep to let you know it's in and turned on then a drop icon will flash on the screen. Lance your finger and hold to the strip until the five microlitre sample is absorbed and within five seconds you'll have your result on screen. Then tap the eject button to discard the strip and the unit turns itself off. We prefer the Accu-Chek Guide for accuracy, but this isn't far behind.
You can also flick through a selection of tags which appear as simple to understand icons above your reading. These include: Before Meal, After Meal, Exercise, Sick, Medication and Other. You also get the time and date along with your mg/dL reading right there on screen.
Should you choose the True Metrix?
The True Metrix blood glucose meter is a fantastically minimal yet capable device for the affordable price. You get what you need on the go with a large screen, accurate measurements with low sample amounts, plus tagging and potential back-up on a PC. The lack of backlight will be an issue for some as will be the lack of app support. But when you're making such savings on the device and strips, these minor issues likely won't be a problem for anyone paying for their own device and strips.