Fitbit Charge 2
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Fitbit Charge 2 Review
There are many fitness trackers out there but the Fitbit Charge 2 might just be the most popular one. It rose to popularity due to the fact that it can track a lot of parameters while costing not so much. The company’s other product, the Fitbit Blaze, was rather bulky and it was lying somewhere between a smartwatch and a fitness tracker. The Charge HR, however, was one of their bestselling fitness trackers. The Fitbit Charge 2 comes as an all-around improvement over the Charge HR. In this in-depth review of the Fitbit Charge 2, we’ll see why it is one of the best, if not the best, fitness tracker out there. We will also make note of its competitors and why it is ahead of its competition.
The design has been borrowed from the Charge HR but comes with a brilliant OLED display
Like we always do, let’s take a look at what you get inside the box. The box is mostly white and there are a lot of specifications and features spewed all over it. Inside the box, there is the fitness tracker, a few documents and the charging cable with the dock. That’s it. It would’ve been awesome if they had provided with an extra band in a different color but that is sold separately. There is also an option for a leather band which allows the tracker to be worn to formal occasions.
Build Quality and Design
The design is so much better compared to the Fitbit Blaze and most of the other fitness trackers in this price range. The rectangular band has the tracker unit seamless mounted in it which can be removed, obviously. You can also swap out the band for a different colored one or go for the leather variant. The tracker unit is completely black on the front and might confuse you into thinking that the whole front portion is used for display. But, there are bezels on the display which is quite evident once it turns on.
But kudos to Fitbit for making the Charge 2 aesthetically pleasing. Compared to the other trackers like Misfit Shine 2 and the Garmin vivoactive, the Charge 2 looks and feels much more superior. It is also compact and sleek and doesn’t interfere if you’re wearing full sleeved shirts. The display uses an OLED panel that is black and white. This is not an issue as it is extremely readable and crisp. Fitbit Charge 2 doesn’t feature a touchscreen and has a tapping mechanism to browse through different parameters. The biggest disappointment is that the Charge 2 is not waterproof. Many fitness trackers offer this option but sadly Fitbit decided to give it a miss. It is splash resistant and they’ve cautioned about taking it into the shower or pool.
Hardware and Performance
Fitbit Charge 2 has gained so much popularity because it can track a lot of parameters pretty accurately. There is no GPS and Fitbit uses a feature called Connected GPS, which is basically using the GPS of your smartphone. Starting up the Charge 2 is pretty much like with all Fitbit devices. Once you sign into the app, select a tracker and then simply input a 4-digit code that appears on the tracker. It will then connect to it and update the firmware if necessary. Then you are all set to go.
Most of the features of the Charge 2 have to be controlled through the Fitbit app. The app itself is really intuitive and is very well laid out. There are various clock faces available that you can select through the app. There are also options to turn on/off continuous heart rate monitoring, set alarms, sync statistics and much more.
Set notifications and alarms, change clock faces and more through the Fitbit app
Charge 2 can measure steps, active minutes, distance covered, calories burned, sleep duration and more. The statistics that are displayed on the app are extremely useful and very detailed. It can display stats in daily, weekly, monthly and yearly periods to help you track your fitness goals. There’s a new parameter known as Cardio Fitness to help you track and rate your high-intensity workouts. Charge 2 takes in your heart rate along with other parameters like your height, weight, age, etc. to create a score and gauge you. Below is a screenshot of the Cardio Fitness score.
Cardio Fitness is a new addition to the Charge 2 which tracks and rates your cardio workouts
The Fitbit Charge 2 is really great to use daily because it is so comfortable and inconspicuous. The display is crisp and extremely readable and there’s an option to turn it on when you rotate your wrist towards you. The features are easily accessible and tapping through the stats is simple. Now, we’ll move on to what could’ve been better with the Fitbit Charge 2. The very first thing that should’ve been there is waterproofing. It is a must have nowadays. Another letdown is that notifications will be there for a few seconds and you cannot read through all your previous notifications on the Charge 2. A really weird thing about Fitbit’s trackers is that they all use unique chargers. The one that comes with the Charge 2 needs to be perfectly clipped on to the sides to start charging. This is another disappointment for those who’ve spare charger cables from other Fitbit trackers lying around. Last but not the least, the battery life. I wouldn’t say that it is disappointing, but the Charge 2 stays up for almost 4-5 days on average. This can be improved to at least a week which will allow fitness enthusiasts to charge it once a week rather than going for it twice a week.
Simply put, the Fitbit Charge 2 is the best tracker in its price bracket, even though there are a few competitors. The amazing thing about the Charge 2 is that it continuously tracks everything and it is available through the Fitbit app. It will start tracking your exercise routines automatically, but you can also do that manually. The continuous heart rate monitor is great and the results were mostly accurate. The Fitbit community is ever growing and is one of the best reasons to get the tracker. Compared to its competitors like the Garmin vivoactive HR and the Misfit Shine 2, the Charge 2 manages to slightly edge through with its automatic exercise recognition feature, continuous heart rate monitor, and the Fitbit community. The slight drawbacks like the lack of waterproofing, not-so-impressive battery, and frustrating charger cable can be overlooked.