I bought this bike as a gift for someone with back problems (etc.) who needs to get low/no impact exercise regularly. I wanted a cheaper model like this so that the resistance is adjusted *manually* (with a knob), because monitors and displays fail or break over the years, regardless of the brand, and I want the bike to be usable without its fancy display if/when it stops working.
Assembly was a breeze - even with two young children clambering all over and around me, it took only an hour or so. I'm sure it can be assembled much more quickly.
Quality was my biggest surprise. The metal tubing is actually quite thick and the locking nuts which hold the seat base together were a nice (and wise) touch. Sure, it's not the same quality as an $800 model, but it is fine. There is a slight bit of shift as you pedal but I believe this is exacerbated by my ignoring the recommendation to place it on a mat (it's on carpet). If you are shorter than about 5'4" the reach to the pedal will be too long at its shortest setting BUT if you know someone with a drill, they can make you an extra hole at the right spot and you'll be set to ride.
There are no pedal straps but there doesn't seem to be a problem with feet coming off the pedals(again, surprisingly). The bike is very smooth and quiet. If your last exercise bike was a tension strap bike, you'll be in heaven. This bike doesn't have the strongest resistance out there but it is enough to make you work hard. I feel that if you wanted stronger resistance in an exercise bike you would be using an upright or even a trainer bike, not a recumbent.
Finally, the monitor is quite basic but easy to read and use, nothing complex. Tells you speed, estimated calories burned, and distance. There is no heart rate monitor, but you can pick up separate heart monitors for under $50 that *aren't* locked to an exercise bike.
This bike is an excellent value for a beginner or basic user. If you are into preprogrammed workouts and can bike for hours up mountain sides, get something else.