If you’re after a solid running watch or hybrid smartwatch-come-fitness-tracker then Fitbit will likely be one of the first names you think of.
Over the last few years the company has become a household name. If you ask most people on the street they’ll refer to fitness trackers as a category as Fitbits.
The company’s used its success to expand and diversify releasing a number of great trackers and hybrid devices covering every category and price point you can think of.
Fitbit Charge 3
If you the fancy bells and whistles of more expensive fitness trackers and running watches, then the Fitbit Charge 3 is the way to go.
Even while Fitbit is pushing smartwatches like the Versa and Ionic, it knows there’s still a market for more approachable fitness trackers that do the basics, and do them well.
The Charge 3 has a design that easily blends in and that is actually quite attractive – for a fitness tracker. The display is bigger and richer in information when compared to the Charge 2, it’s now water-resistant and supports swim tracking, and the battery life has improved.
The Fitbit Versa is the company’s second attempt at a smartwatch, following in the footsteps of the Ionic. The Versa addresses many of the criticisms of Fitbit’s first smartwatch offering. It’s far better-looking, more lifestyle-friendly and has a similar feature-set – and all of this comes wrapped up in a device that costs significantly less money.
You can use it to monitor a huge range of activities too, including swimming, and it’s easy to use. Battery life is another feather in its cap; most other smartwatches on the market don’t come close.
Some users will find the lack of apps frustrating, and it’s disappointing that we’re still having to wait for features that we expect from a smartwatch, such as quick replies to messages.
Fitbit Versa Lite
If you fancy the Versa’s smartwatch features, but don’t like its price tag, then the Fitbit Versa Lite maybe for you.
The Lite is a slightly stripped down version of the main Versa. Key cuts include the absence of local storage to store music and an integrated GPS. This will be an issue for runners and athletes that like to leave their smartphone behind. But for everyone else the cuts are far from deal breakers.
The connected GPS option means you can still get accurate location tracking, if you’re willing to bring your phone with you.
Fitbit Alta HR
Like the Flex 2, the Fitbit Alta HR largely covers the basics in terms of activity tracking. The Alta HR is an updated version of the Alta, which adds a heart rate monitor without sacrificing its slim form.
It’s evident in the discreet design, interchangeable strap with leather options, and stainless steel body. Unlike the Flex 2, it comes with an OLED display, so you can view your vital statistics and data direct from your wrist, alongside some basic smartphone notifications.
The big addition with the Alta HR is new Sleep Stages and Sleep Insights. These use the heart rate monitor and accelerometer data to better track your sleep, including telling you how much time you spend in each sleep phase.
While the Fitbit Ionic is considered Fitbit’s first fully-fledged smartwatch, the truth is at launch it was a little lacking on smartwatch smarts, although that’s been gradually improving since its original release. Fitbit debuted Fitbit Labs, which is its test bed for new app ideas and features. Some of these are fun, such as a virtual pet you care for by ensuring you get enough steps each day.
With the Fitbit Ionic, the exercise and activity tracking is the best you’ll get from any Fitbit tracker on the market. As you would expect from a top-end model, there’s built-in GPS, which is missing from the Fitbit Versa, onboard storage for your music and even contactless payments, so you can leave your phone behind for your next workout. Although with the latter be sure your bank is supported.
Fitbit’s first dedicated Kids wearable is an Alta with some added kid-friendly smarts. These include less focus on calorie burn, but a bigger look at basic step-counting and sleep.
It’s light and comfortable to wear, though might be too small for those kids towards the end of suggested age-range, and lasts multiple days without needing a charge.