CNET First Look
The Fitbit Charge 2 is a worthy sequel to the Charge HRCNET's Dan Graziano shares his thoughts on Fitbit's newest fitness tracker.
The Fitbit Charge 2 is leaps and bounds better the Charge HR. Which is saying a lot since the HR was our most recommended fitness tracker. But Fitbit has really stepped it up this time, The Charge 2 costs $150, that's the same price as the Charge HR, but the new model packs so much more. The larger display, for example, can now alert you to incoming calls, text messages and upcoming calendar events. Although I did find them difficult to read and would usually just pull out my phone if it was something important. Also new this year are sport. [MUSIC] [UNKNOWN] Profiles for running, biking, weightlifting, and interval workouts. And while there isn't GPS built in, the Charge 2 can use the GPS in your smartphone to display pace, distance, and speed when running or biking. Another unique feature is the guided breathing sessions. The Charge can actually determine your breathing rate. And will then guide you to relaxation over a two or five minute session. It's actually kind of cool but as of the first week, I really didn't use it. And while still a bit bulky, overall the charge to it is a lot more stylish. And a lot of that has to do with the interchangeable bands. There's a variety of brands to choose from and even some more premium options. As for battery life, You'll get about four and a half days, maybe five if you're luck. Watch is pretty good. And because it is a [UNKNOWN] it can still check your steps, your distance, calories burnt, floors climbed, active minutes and your sleep. And yes even though HR isn't in the name, there are still optical heart rate into that it runs continuously Speaking of the heart rate, I've found it to be pretty accurate when resting and walking around. But it did fluctuate during runs and workouts. Fitbit is also using the sensor to determine what it calls your cardio fitness level. This is an estimate of your [UNKNOWN] that lets you see how fit you are and how you compare to others in your age range. All of this can be seen in the app, and also provide some tips on improving your score. Overall, I really like this feature, and hope we see more of this from Fitbit in the future. Now, unfortunately, I will have to end with some bad news. The Charge 2 isn't waterproof. You can't shower with it or you can't swim with it. And that's just a huge disappointment. It's literally the one feature I wanted this year, so maybe for some people it's better off to wait for the Fitbit Charge 3. But overall, the Charge 2 is the fitness band that will appeal to most people. The Fitbit app is easy to use, and it lets you compete with friends and family. The price point of the Charge 2 is pretty good and those interchangeable bands make it a lot more stylish. But if you want a waterproof tracker, check out the Fitbit Flex 2. For more information of Fitbit Charge 2, check out the full review over at cnet.com. [MUSIC]