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Fitbit Comparison: Which Fitbit Activity Tracker Is Best for You?

Aug. 31, 2016
Product Comparisons, Shopping
Fitbit Charge 2 vs. Fitbit Blaze
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An activity tracker can make a great gift for your mom, your friend, your gym teacher or even you.

Fitbit makes some of the most popular activity trackers, but before you buy one, use this guide to determine which model is best for your situation. We’ve listed 10 Fitbit models to help you compare prices, features and functionality.

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Fitbit Zip

  • fitbit-zipPrice: $59.95 from Fitbit.
  • Features: The Zip, the least expensive tracker of the bunch, is a small, water-resistant device you can clip onto clothing. It features an easy-to-read display, comes in a variety of bright colors and syncs wirelessly to compatible devices. It tracks steps, calories, distance, active minutes and time of day.
  • Battery life: Four to six months.
  • Good fit for: Casual athletes who are looking for a simple, affordable and functional activity tracker.

Fitbit One

  • fitbit-onePrice: $99.95 from Fitbit.
  • Features: As with the Zip, you can also clip the One onto clothing. It tracks steps, distance, calories burned, floors climbed, active minutes and sleep. It also features a clock and silent vibrating alarm. The tracker includes a simple OLED display and syncs wirelessly to compatible devices.
  • Battery life: 10 to 14 days.
  • Good fit for: Fitness enthusiasts who want to monitor their activity and sleep but don’t want to wear something on their wrist.

Fitbit Flex

  • Fitbit FlexPrice: $99.95 from Fitbit.
  • Features: The Flex is a sleek, stylish wristband that tracks sleep, steps, calories and distance traveled. It also includes a silent vibrating alarm and can sync wirelessly to compatible devices. It doesn’t have a traditional screen, but the slim wristband displays LED lights that show progress toward goals.
  • Battery life: Up to five days.
  • Good fit for: People who want a water-resistant wristband that allows fitness tracking to continue no matter the activity.

Fitbit Flex 2fitbit-flex2

  • Price: $99.95 from Fitbit.
  • Features: The Flex 2 is the new and improved version of the Flex. Most notably, it’s swim-proof and customizable. The Flex 2’s super-small tracker is housed within Fitbit’s slimmest wristband thus far, but you can remove it and place it in other bands or pendants depending on your preference. The Flex 2 offers text notifications and an LED progress display.
  • Battery life: Up to five days.
  • Good fit for: Swimmers who want a tracker that can keep pace in the pool. Priced under $100, the Flex 2 remains on the affordable end of Fitbit’s spectrum while maintaining coveted features like text alerts and interchangeable accessories.

Fitbit Charge

  • Fitbit ChargePrice: $129.95 from Fitbit.
  • Features: The Charge is a step up in price and features from the One and the Flex. This model tracks steps, distance, calories burned, floors climbed and active minutes. It features a clock, auto sleep detection, sleep tracking, a silent vibrating alarm and caller ID. The wristband has an OLED display and can wirelessly sync to compatible devices.
  • Battery life: Seven to 10 days.
  • Good fit for: Dedicated athletes who want an all-encompassing sleep and activity tracker without having to pay the price of a more advanced smartwatch.

Fitbit Alta

  • Price: $129.95 from Fitbit.Fitbit Alta
  • Features: The Fitbit Alta promises to be “the sleekest way to stay inspired.” This slim, stylish tracker comes in black, blue, plum and teal. It offers all-day activity tracking, smart notifications, sleep monitoring and reminders to move. The water-resistant device also features an OLED tap display and wireless syncing to compatible devices.
  • Battery life: Up to five days.
  • Good fit for: Newbies to the fitness tracker world. Although the Alta lacks some of the components of its more advanced counterparts, such as a heart rate monitor and GPS, it’s still a valuable tracker and arguably the most visually appealing Fitbit yet.

Fitbit Charge HR

  • Fitbit Charge HRPrice: $149.95 from Fitbit.
  • Features: The Charge HR is similar to the Fitbit Charge but also includes continuous heart rate monitoring. Like the Charge, it features caller ID, exercise tracking, wireless syncing, a water-resistant design and an OLED display.
  • Battery life: Up to five days.
  • Good fit for: Serious athletes who want a reliable and multifaceted fitness assistant for less than $150.

Fitbit Charge 2fitbit-charge2

  • Price: $149.95 from Fitbit.
  • Features: The Charge 2 is a souped-up heart rate and activity tracking band with interchangeable accessories. It features an easy-to-view OLED screen with tap display, heart rate tracking, text/call/calendar alerts and GPS tracking when connected to your smartphone. The Charge 2 extends fitness to other areas of your life as well, including sleep monitoring and guided breathing sessions. It’s water-resistant but not swim-proof.
  • Battery life: Up to five days.
  • Good fit for: Runners and walkers who want a relatively slim tracking band that keeps tabs on all aspects of their fitness routine.

Fitbit Blaze

  • Fitbit BlazePrice: $199.95 from Fitbit.
  • Features: The Blaze, Fitbit’s newest device, a cross between an advanced fitness tracker and a basic smartwatch. For $199.95, the Blaze offers PurePulse heart rate readings, all-day activity tracking, sleep monitoring and workout summaries. Users can also enjoy wireless syncing to hundreds of devices, music control of mobile playlists, smart notifications (text, email, calendar) and a connected GPS system to map routes when synced with a compatible device.
  • Battery life: Up to five days.
  • Good fit for: Sophisticated athletes who aren’t ready to make the leap to a more advanced smartwatch. The Blaze offers just enough smart features while keeping fitness the main priority.

Fitbit Surge

  • Fitbit SurgePrice: $249.95 from Fitbit.
  • Features: At the top of Fitbit’s fitness tracker line is the Surge, a $249.95 performance fitness GPS watch. Besides typical tracking, this watch has caller ID, text notifications, music control, continuous heart rate monitoring, GPS tracking and wireless syncing to compatible devices. The fancy features aren’t a substitute for tried and true fitness metrics, either; users can log their workouts, view exercise summaries, track distances, monitor calories burned, record floors climbed and calculate pace.
  • Battery life: Up to seven days (GPS battery life up to 10 hours).
  • Good fit for: People who want the bells and whistles of a smartwatch like the Apple Watch Sport but don’t want to pay almost $100 more.

The trackers: At a glance

 Fitbit ZipFitbit OneFitbit FlexFitbit Flex 2Fitbit ChargeFitbit AltaFitbit Charge HRFitbit Charge 2Fitbit BlazeFitbit Surge
Price$59.95 from Fitbit$99.95 from Fitbit$99.95 from Fitbit$99.95 from Fitbit$129.95 from Fitbit$129.95 from Fitbit$149.95 from Fitbit$149.95 from Fitbit$199.95 from Fitbit$249.95 from Fitbit
All-day activity trackingYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYes
Sleep monitoringNoYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYes
Call notificationsNoNoNoNoYesYesYesYesYesYes
Text notificationsNoNoNoNoNoYesYesYesYesYes
Music controlNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoYesYes
Heart rate monitoringNoNoNoNoNoNoYesYesYesYes
Battery lifeFour to six months10 to 14 daysUp to five daysUp to five daysSeven to 10 daysUp to five daysUp to five daysUp to five daysUp to five daysUp to seven days (GPS battery life up to 10 hours)
Water resistantYesYesYesYes (it's swim-proof)YesYesYesYesYesYes

For a more in-depth look at these Fitbit models, see:

Fitbit Face-Off: Fitbit Charge vs. Fitbit Charge HR

5 Things You Didn’t Know Your Fitbit Flex Could Do

Fitness Smartwatch Standoff: Fitbit Surge vs. Apple Watch Sport

Courtney Jespersen is a staff writer at NerdWallet, a personal finance website. Email: [email protected]. Twitter: @courtneynerd.

Updated Aug. 31, 2016.