The concept behind fitness watches is a great one. Watches that you can wear that also track your calories, stairs climbed, sleep, and other vital fitness details are practical for those looking to stay in shape or lose weight. Right now, there are three popular fitness watches on the market.
Those three include the Nike Fuelband, Jawbone Up, and Fitbit Zip. Since summertime is coming (and that means bathing suits), I thought I'd compare these three fitness watches for you, so that you can make an informed decision. Let's start with Nike's popular Fuelband.
The Nike Fuelband: Benefits And Drawbacks
Benefits: The Nike Fuelband was largely the first fitness watch to hit markets. The Fuelband tracks steps taken, calories burned up, and something that Nike calls "Nike Fuel (I'll get to this in a minute)." The Fuelband design is excellent: it's a thin piece of rubber that wraps securely around your wrist. The band doesn't get in the way, and it is sweat proof. A nice display flashes information when needed.
Drawbacks: One of the biggest drawbacks to the Fuelband is the Nike Fuel aspect. Unless you own a Nike+ device, this feature is somewhat useless. The other drawback is the price. At $260, this is far from the cheapest fitness band on the market.
The Jawbone Up
Benefits: Jawbone's Up design definitely takes the design cake. This twistable rubber band looks great and is simple to wear. Jawbone has designed the Up to work in conjunction with an iPhone, and the band communicates with iOS devices effortlessly. This band is meant to be word at all times, around the clock, for a complete health picture. Measurements are recorded via an iOS app, and the Up takes into considering calories, steps walked, and an overall picture of daily activity (including idle time!).
Drawbacks: the first drawback is that the UP doesn't include a screen. In order to view information, you have to look at an iOS device...which brings me to the next drawback. This band only works with an iOS device. If you have an Android device, you are out of luck. The price of the Up, $99.99, could go in either category. It is far less than the Nike band, but it's still on the pricey side for a fitness band that's lacking a screen.
Benefits: The Fitbit Zip is new to the fitness tracker market. Right away, the Zip loos different from the other two fitness trackers in this article (I'm going to add the design details to the 'drawbacks' below). The $59.95 price tag is definitely a benefit, and this tracker can keep tabs on steps taken and calories burned. The Fitbit Zip also connects PCs and smartphones.
Drawbacks: I hate the design of this fitness tracker. Instead of a band, the Zip is shaped like an oversized paperclip. The idea here is to clip this tracker onto your clothes, but it's much bulkier than a wristband. Another drawback is that this tracker doesn't come with a rechargeable battery. Lastly, the Fitbit doesn't work with all Android devices, only the Samsung Galaxy.
To really track you fitness progress, you need a tracker that informs you of your heart rate. Somehow, all of these bands do not include heart rate information. But, if you're going to go with a fitness tracker, consider the Jawbone version. Jawbone's tracker doesn't have a display, but it is reasonably priced, and it does include decent connectivity if you have an iOS device.