Fitbit Charge 5 Review – PhoneArena

Fitbit Charge 5 Review

The Fitbit Cost 5 is a superb health tracker, and an important health tracker solely. It’s good for somebody keen on maintaining with their day by day train stats—irrespective of whether or not they’re a newbie simply making an attempt to lose a little bit of weight or tone up, or an skilled athlete needing a dependable strategy to keep conscious of how their physique is functioning and the bottom they’re masking.

The Cost 5 is certainly not a smartwatch, with few features on high of what you’d already count on from a health tracker. It has a built-in GPS and helps Bluetooth, which it makes use of to sync the info to your telephone in addition to present notifications. It would not have the flexibility to regulate your music because the older Cost did, however it does its essential job (maintaining monitor of your exercise) fairly nicely certainly.

Nevertheless, with a price ticket of $180, the Cost 5 (not like the Fitbit Versa) clearly isn’t making an attempt to compete with any smartwatch, and will nicely be value wanting into for your self or a buddy making an attempt to get more healthy and extra energetic.

What’s within the Field?

  • Fitbit Cost 5
  • Further strap (2nd dimension)
  • USB-A magnetic charging cable

Fitbit Charge 5

Fitness Tracker w/ GPS, 7-day battery

Design and Consolation

The design and form are much like the Fitbit Cost four, however rather more elegant—less complicated in look, smoother, and with a much less angular face than its predecessor. The smooth and unassuming design, to me, is the best for a health watch. It’s fairly unobtrusive, doesn’t get in the best way of day by day life in any respect, and really a lot seems its half. And in order for you one thing apart from the three fundamental band colours out there from Fitbit, there are a lot extra colourful choices and designs to swap them with.

I discovered the Cost 5 was extraordinarily snug even when utilizing a pc for a lot of the day, with my arms flat on a desk—and I normally hate sporting something on my wrist on the laptop. The watch barely made its presence generally known as I went about my common workday: the strap lies very flat in opposition to your pores and skin, and has the cool function of tucking the surplus size again into itself, so there’s nothing protruding in the best way in any respect. All in all, I used to be fairly impressed.

Show and controls

The Cost 5 has no bodily buttons and is on full touchscreen management. The brilliant AMOLED show—10% bigger than that on the Cost four—is encased in stainless-steel, on the again of which you’ll discover the optical coronary heart fee sensor and the magnetic charger contacts, coupled with two discreet EDA sensors up on the edges.

This mannequin is the primary within the collection to function a vivid full-color show, because the older Fitbit Expenses had been totally monochromatic. It’s additionally greater than twice as brilliant as its predecessor, lighting up at 450 nits at max brightness, versus 200 on the Cost four.

One grievance, nonetheless, was that the automated display screen wake function didn’t at all times work completely until I used to be in a correct standing place. It’s meant to mild up the display screen by itself any time you flip your wrist in the direction of you (similar to the “Carry to wake” function in your telephone), however there have been many occasions once I repeatedly tried unsuccessfully. 

Different occasions it labored sporadically, with out me making an attempt to activate it. However this could possibly be seen as a reasonably minor draw back—besides that the common wake-up technique typically failed as nicely.

The common strategy to get up your Fitbit is to firmly faucet twice on the show. Nevertheless, this didn’t at all times work each time I went to verify my stats, and finally, it become a little bit of an annoyance.

That’s to not say the touchscreen is insensitive: as soon as I used to be in, even the lightest faucet at all times registered with out subject. It was solely initially waking the health watch that was typically troublesome, and had me double-tapping very firmly, many times, till it lastly determined to get up.

One other small grievance is that each time I attempted to vary the Display screen Timeout (and another battery-related settings), I’d get an extended “this will have an effect on battery life” warning popup that I needed to scroll via to faucet away. And I might go up just one degree at a time on every setting, which meant scrolling via the warning over and time and again. Not an enormous deal, it simply might have been a smoother expertise.

Software program and performance

The Cost 5 has all of the options you’ll count on on health tracker, with little on the surplus facet. It’s appropriate with each iOS and Android, and all its watch apps come pre-installed. From the beginning, it continuously tracks your steps, coronary heart fee, sleep cycles, and relative oxygen saturation (SpO2)—which you’ll be able to view on the watch face at any time.

Other than a timer and stopwatch, there’s additionally an alarm function, which ought to go off by soundlessly vibrating in opposition to your wrist (for those who occur to sleep subsequent to a lightweight sleeper, this could be a lifesaver on early mornings). 

Nevertheless, this alarm can not be relied on, because it practically at all times didn’t go off for me—I solely acquired it to work one single time! I attempted fairly actually all the things: tinkering with the settings, resetting the Fitbit, altering the watch face, and so forth., and nothing might get it to work constantly.

That is an ongoing subject that has been current with the Cost four and Cost Three as nicely, and I discovered it exhausting to consider the corporate has nonetheless didn’t deal with what’s most certainly a easy firmware subject. I’m presently in communication with Fitbit representatives and can present an replace in the event that they give you any answer for this.

Sports activities Modes

There are six sports activities modes on the Cost 5: Run, Bike, Swim, Treadmill, Weights, and Interval Exercise. 

Throughout any of those actions, Fitbit retains monitor of the depth via your coronary heart fee, and tells you ways a lot time you spent within the fats burn, cardio, or peak heart-rate zones—together with what number of energy you burned. You possibly can set targets within the look ahead to every of these actions, and it’ll inform you once you’ve accomplished them.

Train and exercise monitoring

The Cost 5 additionally carries some motivation methods to get you off the sofa and shifting, utilizing one thing of a reward system. It calls the time you’ve spent exercising with an elevated coronary heart fee Lively Zone Minutes, and the default aim is 22 of them per day.

1 minute within the fats burn zone counts as 1 AZM, whereas 1 minute within the cardio or peak zone equals 2 AZM’s. They’re marked by three stacked upward-pointing arrows, and present up on the principle clock face alongside along with your day by day steps and coronary heart fee. You possibly can toggle between them with a single faucet on the display screen.

A separate function expects you to register some exercise each hour, for 9 hours of the day (the customizable default is 9am-6pm). It counts a minimal of 250 steps as enough exercise per hour, and vibrates in validation each time you obtain it.

When you’ve got a Fitbit Premium subscription, you additionally get the brand new Each day Readiness Rating function, which relies in your sleep rating, coronary heart fee variability, and day by day exercise. The upper your rating, the extra your physique is able to deal with, whereas a low rating signifies it might be time for some R&R.


One other new function is the EDA sensor, which helps you develop into conscious of and handle stress in your physique. The sensor is situated on the rim of the metal watch face, and you’ll take a Three-minute “stress take a look at” any time by sitting nonetheless and maintaining your hand on the sensor. It’s going to collect sweat information out of your glands throughout that point, which is a way more correct indicator of stress than coronary heart fee.


A brand new ECG app can also be coming to the Cost 5 within the coming months, in line with the corporate, to assist monitor your coronary heart well being. The watch is already able to electrocardiographic evaluation, however the software program isn’t fairly prepared but.


On earlier GPS-equipped Fitbits, many customers who run have typically reported irritating malfunctions, such because the tracker lacking elements of their operating routes and exhibiting false distances.

I made a decision to check this out by taking my Cost 5 out for a fast run and testing its built-in tracker in opposition to the Nike Run App on my telephone. The GPS does take some time to attach at first, however in the long run, the gap matched up completely with that marked by my telephone, and the route I had taken was additionally mirrored fairly precisely on the Fitbit app.

It was good to know that the Cost 5’s GPS performance is lastly absolutely polished, and I received’t be needing to take my telephone when going out to train.

By way of the Fitbit app in your telephone, it’s also possible to program the Cost 5 to vibrate and notify you after each mile or kilometer accomplished, or after a custom-set distance.

Water Lock

I even took my Fitbit Cost into the pool with me as soon as, because it boasts 5ATM water resistance (as much as 50m depth). Nevertheless, I discovered myself very annoyed. I found that after the water lock is activated, there isn’t a strategy to flip in your display screen to verify the time of day, or distance coated. The one factor displayed on-screen in Water Lock Mode is a timer counting the minutes since I initiated the train.

After just a few seconds with the timer, the display screen went black and no quantity of tapping would flip it again on. I quickly found that the one highly effective sufficient strategy to “double faucet” it again on, is to whack it twice with the palm of your hand, which prompts you to whack it twice once more to exit Water Lock Mode. “Whack” isn’t any exaggeration—I’d tried each different type of tapping and acquired relatively alarmed once I was getting no response from the look ahead to some time.

Notifications nonetheless pop up whereas in Water Lock Mode, however you can’t work together with them till you exit the mode.

A health watch that includes a “Swim Mode” ought to on the very least be capable of show the time of day whereas within the water, for my part, however not one of the sports activities modes appear to have room for modification of the data they show when they’re energetic.


This was one of many options of most curiosity to me throughout my time with the brand new Fitbit, because it not solely tracks how a lot you sleep, but in addition your numerous sleep cycles (resembling REM, deep sleep, and so forth.) to indicate the standard of your sleep, which it scores on a scale of Zero-100.

Your sleep metrics solely present up in your watch and on the Fitbit app a number of (typically many) hours after you get up—so don’t panic in the event that they present as clean for just a few hours throughout your day. It simply takes a little bit of time for them to look.

SPO2 monitoring

One factor that isn’t made clear in any respect, and is totally a failure on the Fitbit’s half for my part, is the perform of the SpO2 tracker. This oxygen saturation measurement is positioned proper there in the principle menu, alongside along with your present coronary heart fee, that you just’d suppose it’s additionally being measured in actual time. Nevertheless, the SpO2 studying solely reveals your common night-time SpO2, and has nothing to do along with your present state.

I feel this might probably dangerously lead a person astray into considering they’ve wholesome lung perform merely primarily based on the quantity they’re seeing, and alleviate any suspicions they could have—when the truth is, the SpO2 might have just lately dropped with out them realizing it. It’s additionally good to do not forget that no Fitbit can substitute skilled medical gear and a health care provider, in case you are having any suspicions in any respect about your well being.

Fitbit App

The Fitbit app flawlessly synced all my actions and the stats round them each time I began the app, and I might verify my historical past in actual time at any time when I needed. The app is maybe much less intuitive than the Cost 5 itself, because it took me some time to seek out all the things, however it wasn’t troublesome to determine the place issues had been.

The app comes with 23 Watch Faces, all of which may show all of the features of the Cost 5 (one thing that wasn’t at all times the case with earlier Fitbits).

I appreciated that the Cost 5 got here with all of the watch apps put in so I might hold monitor of all the things proper from the beginning—and you’re even capable of uninstall a few of them from the watch itself via your telephone, which connects to the Cost 5 by way of Bluetooth.

By way of the app, you can’t solely view all of your stats and well being metrics, however it’s also possible to customise numerous options on the Fitbit, resembling exercise notifications.

All of your previous train periods are saved in your historical past and could be damaged down into numerous segments you could wish to view, resembling common coronary heart fee, energy burned, impression in your day, and so forth. It’s also possible to evaluate every session to earlier ones to see your general developments.

Fitbit Premium

For $10/month (or $80/12 months) after a 30-day free trial, the Fitbit app additionally supplies a Premium subscription, which presents a full Sleep Rating breakdown, with nice element resembling coronary heart fee exercise. There are additionally 15 meals and train guides to enhance your life-style, in addition to entry to your Well being Metrics Dashboard and Each day Readiness Rating.

The battery life was distinctive (granted, I wasn’t utilizing All the time-On Show), with one full cycle lasting week. After the primary 5 days I used the Fitbit and exercised with it, I nonetheless had 53% battery left. Because of this charging it received’t be one thing that you just’re going to have to consider continuously in any respect.

And if you find yourself operating low on juice, you simply slap it onto its magnetic charger for a few hours at most, and also you’re good to go for one more week.

Fitbit warns, nonetheless, that enabling the All the time-On Show will fairly drastically scale back your battery life, providing you with about two days per cycle.

Last impressions

All in all, I used to be fairly glad with all the info I used to be capable of glean from my week spent with the Fitbit Cost 5. It’s undoubtedly nice to know the way nicely you’re sleeping, what your resting coronary heart fee is, and the way energetic you’re all through the day. 

Significantly in at present’s world, the place most of us spend our days sitting in entrance of a pc, the Cost 5 with all its options could also be simply the instrument to get you up and shifting extra—which is one thing we might in all probability all use.

If you wish to be extra conscious of your day by day exercise and your physique normally, however don’t essentially wish to break the financial institution for a fancy-schmancy smartwatch, this $180 gadget could possibly be nicely value it. 

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