The best Fitbits have developed a reputation as some of the best fitness trackers in the world over the last decade, introducing many of us to a world of step counting, calorie burning and sleep tracking.
For the serious exercisers out there, pairing one of the best Fitbits with a pair of the best running shoes for women has taken workouts to a whole new level.
While the famous best fitness watch has also been a saviour for those of us who want to track our sleeping habits to get our body clocks healthy (and if you're still after a sound night's sleep we'd recommend grabbing one of our best pillows too).
The Fitbit kicked off a wave of trackers and watches across the market and, through it all, they have maintained their place as a mainstay in the health and fitness world. In fact, statistia.com reports that there are a whopping 29.57 million active Fitbit users worldwide, as of 2019.
At the time of writing, there are seven Fitbit products on the market, as well as some handy accessories to help keep your health in tip-top shape. At the more expensive end of the scale is the Versa 2, available for £199, while the Fitbit Inspire sits at the more affordable end of the spectrum at £49.99.
At woman&home, we are taken by the Versa 2, which is well worth the extra money in our eyes - if you can afford to spare the cash. A sleek, intuitive and – dare we say it – stylish aid in your quest for better health and fitness, it’s every bit as helpful as it is good-looking.
Each Fitbit can complement different users’ needs – for some, extra features are a must. For others, it may not be worthwhile to pay extra money for functions they might not require. So, below, we explore the pros, the cons, and the differences between the best Fitbit products on the market.
How to choose the best Fitbit for you
Choosing the right Fitbit for you is just like choosing the right phone or laptop – it’s important to evaluate the features that are important to you, from those that are must-haves to those that you simply might not use. The features vary between devices, so it’s helpful to check which ones are top of your list, to enable you to get the most out of your exciting new purchase.
And, just like with any tech or fitness buy, budget is another key consideration when deciding which to choose. Fitbits are very reasonably priced when compared with the fitness-tracker market as a whole, so whichever you opt for, rest assured that you won’t be paying over the odds. Fitbit prices range from £49 to £199, so set your budget before taking a look at the options. As mentioned, the features get more extensive the higher price you pay, but you might decide you just don’t need everything the most expensive device is offering. Equally, you might want a tracker simply to tell the time and track your steps – in which case, there’s no need to pay more for a more complex Fitbit.
When it comes to wearable technology, style may well be important to you. Just because it’s functional, doesn’t mean it can’t look good, too. Most Fitbits have straps that can be changed, but the Versa has other designer accessories that don’t come with the Ionic or the Charge. So, if that’s important to you, it’s something to bear in mind. The Versa straps also come in a range of colours, while the others only come in three or four neutral dark colours – if it’s a brightly coloured watch you’re looking for, the Versa may be the one for you.
It’s worth mentioning also that the set-up on Fitbit is very easy, so if you’re nervous about a complex process before you even get started with a fitness tracker, Fitbit could be a great brand for you. Simply download the Fitbit app and it will walk you through the process, offering prompts on the device the whole way through.
So, which is the best Fitbit for you?
The best Fitbits you can buy right now
The Ionic is the brand’s first smartwatch and both a good introduction to the world of fitness tracking or a great option for those looking for their next tracker purchase. The band is very light to wear, so feels comfortable whether you’re at your desk or mid-run. The Ionic is an ideal pick for those who want to take their fitness to the next step, as it includes a few more exciting features than more basic Fitbit models, including built-in GPS, a heart-rate monitor, swim tracking and built-in workouts. The latter is brilliant if you struggle for inspiration when working out, giving you all the expert advice and moves you’ll need for a good sweat session. When compared with some of the smaller devices, we also really appreciated the wider screen, which makes everything feel a bit easier to use. It is worth noting, though, that the Ionic is more expensive than the Charge 4 (reviewed below), but doesn’t come with a heap of added features – we believe you’re paying for the far superior screen experience, which is a great bonus of the Ionic.
For those shoppers after a Fitbit that does all of the essentials you’d expect of a fitness tracker but without all the bells and whistles, this is the one. A sleek, smaller Fitbit, it comes in the compact and stylish packaging we’ve all come to expect from the brand. It has a small screen, so might not work as well for those who struggle with sight issues, but it’s perfectly workable for most. We found the Inspire brilliantly easy to navigate – a simple swipe up and down takes you to all of the features, while you can swipe left and right on the time homescreen for a quick-view look at the basics like step count, calories burnt and distance walked/run. In terms of features, you can connect the Inspire to your phone and receive calls and texts, as well as social-media updates. You can track your exercise, be it a walk, run or swim (it’s waterproof to 50m), though you can’t specify the exercise before getting started. And there’s also a helpful stopwatch and timer feature, to amp up your fitness plan. The Inspire excels as the Fitbit with all the essentials features and nothing further to complicate things – ideal if you’re a little nervous around tech and want a super-easy introduction to the world of fitness trackers.
One tiny quibble of ours, though, was that the charging cable on the Inspire is very short, making it difficult to rest the device anywhere while rebooting the battery, but a small issue in an overall handy little tracker.
The Versa 2 – Fibit’s update on their original Versa release – first of all struck us as a really stylish watch, with a sleek watch front and a high-spec design, as well as a sophisticated-looking watch strap (which can be changed). The watch is super easy to navigate, showing your vital stats on the home page, with a quick swipe up allowing you go into more detail on your step count, heart rate and calories burnt. Then, a quick swipe left allows you to explore the rest of the features, such as the timer, built-in exercises, weather and music, as well as third-party apps such as Strava, for runners. The extra features mean it’s a fantastic choice for those looking to really hone in on their health and fitness. It’s also very easy to use, so it would be great for fitness-watch novices and technophobes. However, unlike some other Fitbits, there is no GPS feature, which is a little disappointing for a more premium product (and price). We would have also loved to have seen a wider range of in-built workouts, than just the seven initially available.
But one great bonus of the Versa 2 is the synchronisation with your smartphone. Unlike other Fitbits, it has a built-in Alexa and allows you to reply to texts using only your voice into the watch, which is very handy if you need to respond while busy working out. Overall, a very sleek, easy device that will help you to level up your fitness goals.
Despite only being £15 more expensive, the Inspire HR has a range of added features that the original Inspire doesn’t, so it could be well worth the money for fitness fans. Those who buy the HR can enjoy using the sleep-tracking feature, for example (a popular aspect of many fitness trackers), which will track your light, deep and REM sleep to help you establish a more restful routine. For those keen on incorporating more mindfulness into their lives, the HR also comes with guided breathing sessions, with instructions on how exactly to do it correctly. The HR also measures your heart rate, to get a clearer picture of your cardio fitness – a valuable metric to note. The HR is marginally thicker in depth than the original Inspire, because of the heart-rate monitor, and it has the same call and text notifications, but this model comes with 20 different exercises, meaning you can track your movements more accurately.
The newest model to launch from Fitbit, the Charge 4 is an upgrade on the Charge 3, which was released earlier. At £129.99, it’s one of the brand’s more advanced models and another one to consider for those after a bit more from their fitness tracker than the Inspire, for example. The Charge still has a smaller screen however, which is worth bearing in mind if you’d prefer something bigger to use. The Charge 4 has all the essential features – sleep tracking, calories burnt, heart rate, built-in exercises – and then some, including swim tracking and built-in GPS. The Charge 4 is very easy to use and set up, making it a good option for those worried about anything too complex. Sleep tracking is a highlight of the Charge – you’ll receive an in-depth sleep score if you wear it overnight and a vibration-only alarm that feels a little less startling than a normal, smartphone wake-up call. All in all, this simple-to-use fitness tracker is great for those after all the benefits of a fitness tracker with none of the faff.