Forbes' 'The Wirecutter' column looked at eight different fitness trackers and determined the Fitbit Charge HR is the best of the bunch.
"Unfortunately, no single tracker currently available does it all, so we surveyed 602 Wirecutter readers to determine which features are the most important," wrote Wirecutter columnist Jim McDonald (April 17).
"They told us they required a wristband design and the capability to accurately count—and display on a built-in screen—steps and distance. Less important but still desirable were features like heart-rate monitoring and sleep tracking. Based on this info, we researched the most-reputable online resources, and got opinions from writers who cover fitness trackers. We ended up testing the Fitbit Charge, Fitbit Charge HR, Garmin Vivofit, Garmin Vivosmart, Basis Peak, Jawbone UP24, Pebble Steel (with Misfit app), and UP24."
The Wirecutter team wore each device simultaneously and recorded results of activity over a five-day period.
The Fitbit Charge HR won out because it best delivered the features and activity information that matter most.
"It counts daily steps and flights of stairs more accurately than the competition, features continuous heart rate monitoring without adding bulk, performs automatic sleep tracking, includes basic smartphone-notification features, and is complemented by a mature and motivating app with support for third-party integration," McDonald wrote. "The Charge HR also features a band similar to a wristwatch. And battery life is a good 4 to 5 days. The Charge HR offers a more complete package than any other currently available tracker.
"One criticism is that, as with most wrist trackers, the Charge HR struggles to deliver accurate heart rate data during active exercise. If you want the most accurate readings during exercise, a chest strap is the way to go. Still, the Charge HR’s weaknesses are the easiest to overlook of the models we tested."