The pandemic has brought the importance of physical and mental fitness to the forefront. It has pushed the urban class especially to adopt every day healthy habits. That is why you see people sweating it out in the gyms, stadiums and city parks, ably supported by their fitness trackers and smartwatches which, by the way, have flooded the marketplace these days. In this regard, Fitbit wrist-worn devices have demonstrated dependability, durability and acceptability, and hence are immensely popular among the consumers.
Fitbit’s latest device, Charge 5, perhaps the San Francisco-based firm’s most advanced health and fitness tracker to help keep a pulse on your fitness, stress, heart health, sleep and overall well being, is here in a thinner, sleek design. It retails for Rs 14,999 and with six months of Fitbit Premium included, you’ll get deeper insights, actionable guidance and a range of more than 500 workouts, plus mindfulness and nutritional content to empower you to do what’s best for your body each day. I have been wearing the review unit for the past fortnight and have been quite impressed with its accuracy when it comes to tracking everyday physical activity parameters, and battery life is a full-week too. Let’s take a deep-dive to find out more about this Fitbit innovation.
We have reviewed some of the earlier products such as Charge 4. Trust me, there’s a lot going for the latest Fitbit device. Take for instance, the fact that Charge 5 is 10% thinner than its predecessor, it has an aerodynamic design and is optimised for performance and engineered for a seamless fit. With a new AMOLED colour display, Charge 5 is Fitbit’s first tracker with an always-on display option for added convenience to see your stats or while training. The display is also two-times brighter than its predecessor making it easy to see your stats on sunny days. You can also switch your look at any time, choosing from lightweight silicone infinity bands, breathable sport bands, plush nylon hook and loop bands, and hand-crafted premium Horween leather bands.
With the swipe of a finger, you can view your stats, receive/send notifications from/to your mobile phone (quick replies with Android only), and choose from 20 colourful clock faces to customise what information you want to see most. While the device and silicone bands are water resistant to 50 metres, it is important to thoroughly dry your band after wearing it in the water or after sweating to avoid skin irritation.
Fitbit Premium’s new feature, Daily Readiness Score, uses insights from your body via Charge 5, including your activity, heart rate variability (HRV) and recent sleep, to help you assess when you’re ready to push yourself physically—in other words, if you should workout or prioritise recovery. By wearing your Fitbit device daily (including while you sleep), you’ll receive a personalised score each morning along with details on what impacted it, with suggestions like a recommended activity level and Premium content to help you make the best decisions for your body and make your workouts more efficient. Charge 5 also includes built-in GPS, 20 exercise modes, automatic exercise recognition and an estimate of your V02 max (a measure of the maximum amount of oxygen your body can utilise during exercise. Plus, with Premium, you can access more than 200 workouts from certified trainers and popular brands like Daily Burn and new high energy workouts from LES MILLS.
Charge 5 has an EDA sensor, which measures your body’s response to stress through tiny changes in the sweat glands on your fingers. Fitbit first launched EDA with Fitbit Sense smartwatch and have found 70% of users reduced their heart rate during a two-minute EDA Scan session, showing these tools can help reduce stress. Charge 5 also tracks your heart rate 24/7 and provides notifications when you are above or below your personal ranges, and while many factors can affect your heart rate, a high or low heart rate may be an indication of a heart condition that requires medical attention.
In addition to managing your heart health, Charge 5 provides a holistic view of other key wellness metrics via the Health Metrics dashboard in the Fitbit app, including breathing rate, skin temperature variation and SpO2. With Premium, you can also track long-term trends and personal ranges. And because sleep is also critical to your wellbeing, you’ll continue to receive sleep tools like daily Sleep Score, Sleep Stages and SmartWake alarms. Premium members also receive a deeper analysis and guidance to improve sleep quality.
Key takeaways: Charge 5 is Fitbit’s most advanced health and fitness tracker that is designed for convenience, performance and comfort. When it comes to tracking steps, calories, floors, sleep, and heart rate, it is very accurate and reliable. At Rs 14,999, it’s at a pretty decent price point to appeal to the health conscious lot and hence finds a strong recommendation.
24/7 heart rate and active zone minutes
Stress management score and EDA Sensor
Heart health notifications
Built-in GPS for pace and distance
Health metrics like breathing rate and SpO2
Estimated street price: Rs 14,999