October 2015 | Helen
At wifimypad we have a love/hate relationship with exercise. As in: one of us loves it, the other hates it. But we both do it (see Smart Bathroom Scales for why). And when we do, it works for us knowing the impact of our efforts. Calories burned, distance travelled, even how well we are sleeping (this is our speciality, for the record). And this is what activity trackers are for.
Setting goals, tracking your progress and counting every single one of those calories you burn as you force yourself round just…one…more…lap…of the park. Your trusty fitness tracker gathers all your stats and allows you to check on your performance and progress once you’ve got your breath back.
But which of the fitness trackers did we pick for The Wifi Pad?
Why we bought the Fitbit One:
✓ Excellent reviews from tech site after tech site
✓ High on performance and design
✓ Offers an alternative to watch style activity trackers
✓ Compatible with the Fitbit Aria smart scale
✓ For us there is no other choice for The Wifi Pad
✓ Price at time of writing – £69 (Amazon)
Why did the Fitbit One tick our boxes?
Functionality – what can it do? Does it cover the basics well and give you any notable extras?The Fitbit One Wireless Activity and Sleep Tracker monitors and records your every movement while you walk, run or even decide to grab some shut-eye. It syncs all data with an online account. Plus, it generates a statistical report which is a live feed, showing you the number of calories you burn, the distance you travel, and even analysing your sleep pattern. Additionally, the Fitbit One allows you to create goals, and helps you achieve them.
A big plus for the Fitbit One is that it syncs with data from the Fitbit Aria, Fitbit’s smart bathroom scale which allows you to factor in other info like your weight and muscle/fat ratio.
Connectivity - is it compatible with Apple and Android? Does it use a wifi or Bluetooth connection? How reliable is the connection?The Fitbit One is compatible with both Android and Apple devices. Users can easily share their data with each other or move it to their computers using the Bluetooth adapter that comes with it. The Fitbit One also sends all recorded data to a cloud server where you can access it any time you like via the app.
Usefulness of app(s) - how useful is the associated app and can you sync data with other health apps?As well as syncing data with other Fitbit products such at the Fitbit Aria, the Fitbit app can already be linked to approximately 40 other health apps so you can use the Fitbit One’s recorded data to generate health plans such as diets and workout regimes.
Does it look good? - activity trackers are going to be on show, so does the Fitbit One look the part?Whether the Fitbit One is for you does depend on whether you are averse to wearing activity trackers on your wrist 24/7. We don’t care for that particular look ourselves, hence us liking this one that you can hide away out of site, in a bag or clipped onto your waistband under your kit. But that does come with its down sides, like you being more likely to lose it because it isn’t attached to your wrist.
It fits snuggly into a accompanying wristband however the wristband is an accessory intended for night-time use to allow the tracker to monitor your sleep.
Other activity trackers are designed more like watches and can be worn all day. Which you opt for all depends on your personal preference.
Value for money – is this product a positive steal or a purchase to make your eyes water?Costing under £80 on Amazon at the time of writing, the Fitbit One is competitively priced when compared to other high quality fitness tracker brands. Throw in the superior battery life and you got yourself a good deal. The Fitbit One also provides the most extensive range of statistical information and hence provides the most help in deciding on your future health. Ultimately, if you use the Fitbit One regularly, you’ll absolutely be getting value for money.
The home foot spa test – Is this a genuinely useful product, or one that you will only use once before relegating them to the back of the cupboard?The Fitbit Wireless Tracker, when used regularly is brilliant. The data it generates enables you to easily monitor your health and fitness giving that extra impetus to stay fit. The tracker is quite addictive and will soon become something you cannot leave home without. Its added appeal lies in its ability to let you quietly revel in just how much exercise you’ve done each day. Just don’t celebrate with a doughnut (or do, who are we to judge?)
What do others have to say about the Fitbit One?
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Videos about the Fitbit One activity tracker
Fitbit One official video
Find your Fit 2015
Which other activity trackers did we check out?
The Garmin Vivoactive smart watch is equipped with GPS to encourage/guilt you into an active lifestyle. It calculates the number of steps you take when you walk or run while also calculating your heart rate and the number of calories you burn during the process. The smart watch also comes with pre-loaded applications to specifically aid in sports like golf, running and cycling. It also functions as a watch, making it doubly useful.
If you like Fitbit but prefer a watch style fitness tracker, the Fitbit Charge HeartRate monitor is based on wrist-based reading of your heart rate. It monitors your heart rate while you workout and also monitors your sleep at night with an alarm option for in the morning. Additionally, it notifies you when somebody calls you along with their name and number. It has a long battery life too so you won’t find it constantly grinding to a halt.
XiaomiMi Band fitness tracker
At under £20, the XiaomiMi is one of the best value fitness tracking options on the market. It does not have a display but is connected to an app on your mobile or tablet where you can check out your stats. Apart from the regular fitness tracking requirements such as counting your steps and calculating your heart rate, the XiaomiMi band features an alarm and a smart-lock feature which unlocks your phone if it is the vicinity of the band.
Frequently asked questions:
What are fitness and activity trackers?
Activity and fitness trackers are devices which monitor and aid physical workouts by measuring the amount of activity you are doing, the heart rate and even sleeping patterns in some cases.
Are activity trackers suitable for beginners?
Activity trackers are well suited to beginners and non-athletes who need help planning and analysing their workout sessions. Statistical data from such devices helps you to make good health choices and keep you motivated.
Are activity trackers suitable for serious athletes?
Serious athletes need to tweak minute details in their daily health plans. The extensive data, which activity trackers provide, helps you plan your everyday programme.
Can I use activity trackers for swimming?
Different activity trackers come with different key features. While the majority of trackers aren’t waterproof, some activity trackers are made to be water resistant and can be used up to a certain depth in a swimming pool.