There’s an app for everything these days, isn’t there?
Let me back up for a moment and explain that I’m on a journey in 2020 to improve my fitness level that includes religiously counting my steps and shooting for that (magical?) 10,000 steps a day milestone.
I’m also all about finding little side hustles that earn me some extra income. So, I find myself being irresistibly drawn to fitness apps like Sweatcoin that offer motivating rewards
The benefits of walking are widely touted by health experts. Moreover, after several months of lacing up the sneakers daily, I’m a believer. Even though moderate-intensity exercise like walking may not be enough on its own (bummer!), I will stick with the routine.
So, for me, it was a no-brainer to download Sweatcoin, tuck my iPhone in the back pocket, and take it along on my daily jaunts. It probably won’t come as any big surprise to learn that this is not a significant money-maker for me.
Sweatcoin sure won’t take the place of my primary method of earning extra income for the past three years. Furthermore, I prefer Achievement when it comes to earning rewards by walking. But, I also have no plans to delete Sweatcoin.
Let’s explore how the Sweatcoin App works, and why I’m keeping it, shall we?
What is the Sweatcoin App?
Sweatcoin is a free mobile app owned by Sweatco LTD that encourages people to exercise and move more by rewarding users with digital currency for steps they take daily. The program is the brainchild of two London-based entrepreneurs and fitness enthusiasts, Oleg Fomenko and Anton Derlyatca, who launched the app in 2016.
After initially launching in the UK, Sweatcoin is now available in at least 50 countries around the globe and continues to expand. You must be at least 13 years old to join.
Users are paid in Sweatcoins (SWC) at the rate of 0.95 SWC for 1,000 verified steps. (1 SWC less a 5% administration fee). The number of steps you can convert each day is based on your membership level which we’ll discuss below.
If you’re confused as to how anyone can pay you to walk, you’re in good company. It does sound a little hokey, doesn’t it? But the fact is that the platform is legit and I earn rewards daily.
So, for all those wondering how this is possible, here’s how the business model functions. Sweatcoin partners with more than 300 brands that pay fees to be featured in the Sweatcoin marketplace. Millions of people are exposed to partner brands which spreads brand awareness and creates markets for products.
Sweatcoin also claims to partner with insurance companies and government entities who share concerns about the healthcare costs that result from inactivity. Such organizations appreciate Sweatcoin’s mission and recognize the value in driving positive behavioral changes.
One thing to be aware of is that as a virtual currency, there is no fixed exchange rate for converting SWC into a dollar value which means that (except on rare occasions) you don’t have the option of cash withdrawals through PayPal. Rather, you can spend SWC on offers made available through the app.
The value of one SWC varies by the offer but on an average basis, 50 SWC appears to be the equivalent of $1. But there are also sometimes free promotional offers that you may enjoy.
How Does Sweatcoin Work?
As we discuss the ins and outs of the Sweatcoin App, how it all works, and how users can benefit, we’ll look at each of the following aspects in detail:
- Joining Sweatcoin
- How to Earn SWC
- How to Spend SWC in the Sweatcoin Marketplace
- Interacting with Friends and the User Community
You must have either an Android or IOS smartphone to join Sweatcoin because the built-in pedometer chip in your mobile phone is your step tracking device. If you have a smartphone, the sign-up process is very straightforward and is accomplished quickly.
Download the Sweatcoin App from either the App Store or Google Play. To create your profile, all you need supply is a first name, password, and your mobile number. You’ll get a notification from Sweatcoin with a Pin number. Verify your account with that Pin number and you’re off and running (or at least walking, lol).
You MUST allow location tracking to participate, and you will see the best results if you select “Always Allow”.The App works in the background to log your steps as you go about your day. Sweatcoin adamantly maintains that your data is safe, and is never shared or sold.
How to Earn SWC
Once you’re a member, you can earn SWC in one (or all) of these 3 ways:
- By Converting Verified Steps
- Through Participating in Daily Bonuses
- By Referring Friends and Family Members
Converting Verified Steps
The steps you take are verified through Sweatcoin’s proprietary algorithm and converted to SWC. The process requires that you carry a compatible device with you. The App works with iPhones, most Android devices, and the Apple Smartwatch.
One nice thing is that version 2 was released at the end of February 2020 and Sweatcoin now tracks indoor steps (at least for iPhone 7 or newer). Previously, it relied on GPS, along with your phone’s accelerometer, and only worked when you walked outdoors. So, I’m definitely seeing an uptick in my recognized daily activity.
I must admit, I find it annoying that the program doesn’t work with other wearable devices. My Garmin smartwatch is like an additional appendage and only ever comes off for showering and charging. Achievement makes it much more convenient by letting me sync my Garmin and counting all steps tracked by the wristband.
My verified steps through Sweatcoin are often considerably less. In part, that’s because I sometimes forget to keep the phone on me. But some of it is the algorithm which is a bit of a mystery. For example, my Garmin clocked 14,792 steps yesterday while Sweatcoin only gave me credit for 10,380 steps that converted into 9.79 SWC.
I should point out that I’m only able to earn that many SWC in a day because I increased my membership level. When you first join, you’re placed in the Mover level which means you can only convert a maximum of 5,000 steps a day. But you can easily upgrade if it makes sense based on your activity.
Membership in Sweatcoin is always free in the sense that you never have to spend any cash. But, leveling up will cost you a monthly charge in SWC. Available levels are shown in the image below. I’m currently at the Quaker level.
You can easily change your level within your profile. In my case, Sweatcoin sent me notifications asking if I wanted to upgrade because my steps indicated it might be to my advantage. But, it’s your choice.
You can earn 1 or 2 additional SWC per day by taking advantage of the Daily Bonus offers. Remember, Sweatcoin earns money by promoting and advertising partner brands. The normal Daily Bonuses involve watching short videos that take about a minute.
Frequently, the ads are for games or apps that you’re encouraged (but not required) to download. I haven’t bit on anything yet. But I sometimes watch the promos. Lately, in the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic, Sweatcoin is offering 5 SWC per day if you complete a 20-minute exercise routine,
They have links to various Youtube workout videos. With so many of us stuck at home, it’s a great reminder not to get too sedentary, and I’m enjoying it. The offer was just extended and is currently available for another 14 days.
The third way to earn SWC is by referring friends and family members. You receive 5 SWC for each referral who joins using your link. Find your referral link on your profile page and then share it through email or your social media platforms. Many of us are doing a lot more walking during these challenging Coronavirus days when most other activities are so restricted.
Share the fun!
How to Spend SWC in the Sweatcoin Marketplace
The premise behind Sweatcoin is that healthy behavioral changes should be encouraged, Let’s confess, shall we? We all know that we need to engage in a lot more exercise than we do on a much more consistent basis. But it’s not easy, right?
Improvements in fitness levels require a long-term commitment that many find difficult to sustain. We’re looking for immediate gratification. When we don’t receive that, we often give up. Sweatcoin wants to satisfy some of those desires for quick and tangible rewards by offering some “carrots”.
You can’t exchange SWC for cash and spend the cash as you see fit. But, you can spend SWC through the platform’s marketplace. Offerings change frequently with new offers appearing most days. Anytime you open the App, you will see a variety of options for spending your SWC.
Members can spend SWC on relatively inexpensive Daily Offers, contribute SWC to charitable organizations, save up for much more challenging Marathon offers (6,000 to 10,000 SWC), or dream about Bucket List items (good luck with those 🙂 ).
All goods and services are offered by partner organizations, So, so complete the purchase transaction on third-party sites. You never have to give Sweatcoin your credit card info because all on-site transactions take place in SWC.
The image to the right shows my accumulated SWC as of this morning. To peruse offers, I can either click the ‘Spend’ button or use the marketplace icon at the bottom of the screen. It’s a little silly I suppose, but I enjoy tracking my progress.
Interacting With Friends and the User Community
There’s nothing wrong with a little friendly competition, right? And, if it encourages us to get in better shape it’s a good thing. When you get your family and friends involved, you can follow each other within the community. One interesting feature is that you can exchange SWC with others.
Those Marathon offers that are super difficult to achieve on your own can be far more attainable if friends pool their SWC resources. So, exchanges of SWC often take place adding to the community spirit.
As mentioned above, you earn 5 SWC for each referral. But, right now there’s also an offer to receive cash through PayPal if you achieve certain referral levels. It’s hard to say how long these offers will be available. But, as of the date of this post, users can earn $6 for inviting 12 people and $20 for 40 invites. Right now this is the only way to get cash!
- Free to join and participate at all levels.
- It’s open to those 13 and older in at least 50 countries. You may want to encourage your teens.
- You can join with your buddies and motivate each other with good-natured competition.
- Earn rewards for steps you’re taking anyway.
- Incentives to get fit are a good thing.
- Once you create an account, it works automatically and effortlessly in the background.
- The App is always running in the background and can drain your battery rather quickly.
- SWC cannot be withdrawn as cash.
- Sweatcoin is not a source of significant income.
More and more often these days, we hear “there’s an app for that”. It’s understandable that we can be a little skeptical when we’re told you can make some money with everyday actions like walking. So, I think it’s helpful to read about someone else’s experiences.
I hope you found value in my attempt to answer the question, how does Sweatcoin work?
Do you still have more questions about Sweatcoin or how it works? Please get in touch using the comment section below and I’ll happily get back to you. Are you already a ‘Sweatcoiner’? We’d love to hear how you’re faring with this app!
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