With wearable tech getting more and more popular, it is starting to feel like every man and his dog is releasing the newest “fitbit”. With fitness trackers becoming cooler by the day, anyone who is interested in monitoring their activity is buying up.
With so many choices, which one deserves a place on your credit card bill? Well, I’ve done my homework, so that you don’t have to. Below I am going to showcase a range of devices out there, and explain how they rank against each other in terms of stand-out features, price, design and/or quality of software.
The Fitbit Charge 2
The Fitbit Charge 2 might just be my favourite. It’s more expensive than most of the other options from Fitbit, but if you’re looking to go running this is a great option that is still cheaper than traditional running trackers.
It has five-day battery and always-on heart rate tracking, but adds a much larger OLED display, a heart rate tracker and a few new fitness features that are usually only seen on the Fitbit Blaze.
The other great thing about the FitBits is there is some seriously cool bands coming out. For those who are concerned about how a fitness band looks while they aren’t exercising, the Fitbit is perfect.
Fitbit Charge 2 verdict
Upsides? Changeable look, big screen
Downsides? Not waterproof, no GPS, limited phone notifications
Withings Activite Pop
This is probably the least “fitness” conscious of the bunch, but it’s a strong contender. The Withings Activite Pop is an attractive analogue watch with step counting built in. As well as counting steps accurately, it also has a good go at counting running distances and monitoring your sleep. Plus, they have thrown in a handy vibrating alarm. Working well as a motivational device, the watches secondary dial sweeps round from 0 to 100% of your desired daily step goal.
The associated app is also pretty good, but syncing isn’t the greatest. It is also said to have a battery life that lasts up to 8 months!
Withings Activite Pop Verdict
Upsides? Cool design, 8 month battery life
Downsides? Slow syncing
Samsung Gear Fit 2
The Gear Fit 2 is a great-looking feature-packed fitness band, but its design isn’t always perfect for hardcore workouts. Samsung’s Gear Fit 2’s design is pretty flash and features a big display. The price isn’t too bad, compared to some other fitness trackers. The obvious problem is that it won’t work with your iPhone or Windows device, you’ll need to have an Android.
Samsung Gear Fit 2 Verdict
Upsides? Big display, great value
Downsides? No iOS support and some barometer issues.
Microsoft Band 2
On face value, the Microsoft Band 2 is pretty ugly. It looks chunky and uncomfortable, but when you take a good look, you realise it is because it is absolutely jammed with sensors. There’s an optical heart rate sensor, accelerometer, gyrometer, barometer, GPS, ambient light sensor, skin temperature sensor, UV sensor, capacitive sensor, galvanic skin response sensor, and last but not least, a microphone.
It’s ideal for the gym and any other sport you can think of, as well as counting steps and monitoring sleep. The two-day battery life isn’t ideal, but its recharge time is lightning fast.
Microsoft Band 2 Verdict
Upsides? Powerful and versatile, 11 sensors
Downsides? Pretty expensive, crappy battery life, kind of ugly, it’s Microsoft
Garmin Vivofit 2
This little guy is your budget option. It may not have the looks, or the frills, but it has a mega battery life and is fully waterproof.
It does the bare bones of counting your steps and sending you reminders to stay active, but past that there isn’t much else. The Vivofit also tracks running and sleep, but not particularly well.
Garmin Vivofit 2 verdict
Upsides? Good battery life, very cheap
Downsides? Not very comfortable, no frills
Apple Watch Series 2
Last but not least, the star of the show. The apple watch does everything the other options do, and more. You can use the Apple Watch to listen to music via wireless Bluetooth headphones. You can play songs like an iPod, get notifications and run apps like a mini iPhone and make payments with Apple Pay.
Apple Watch Series 2 verdict
Upsides? Good looking, use of Apple Apps and healthkit integration into Pummel
So there you have it, a very quick run down on most of the current fitness trackers. To find out more about how to leverage the data you collect on your new tracker, get out and find one of our top personal trainers.