We're in the thick of wearable fitness tech season and the Fitbit Charge Three has just arrived.
This could be Fitbit's best overall general fitness tracker but how does that compare to the Fitbit Versa a watch that I've already really liked.
And how does it compare to Apple Watch Series Four.
Well I'm here to tell you after only wearing it a few days how it compares and what you should look out for how it stands out.
The Fitbit Charge three is $150.
Which is significantly less then the Apple watch series four.
But it's also $50 less then the Versa.
So if you're looking for value that's it.
It also has better battery life then the Fitbit Versa.
And for the first time the Fitbit Charge three compared to the Charge two.
Has water resistance for swimming, which is great.
So you can wear it in the shower or wear it while swimming.
It has a larger screen and it's really touch enabled this time, so it doesn't have any of that tap to touch stuff which feels a lot smoother to operate.
The Charge 3 also gets notifications, so you can tap in all the notifications from your phone, feeling a lot more like a smartwatch.
So in that sense, isn't it kind of like a smart watch?
That's the thing, it's probably enough of that if you just want the basic functions.
But what it doesn't have, no music support, so no ability to store music, and there's no music remote.
And while there is Fitbit pay, for a $20 bump-up version, which is not bad, cuz you're also getting An extra band.
Fitbit doesn't support a lot of banks at this point, compared to Apple Pay and Google Pay.
Other than that, it's a pretty basic fitness tracker experience.
But it does have the step-up heart rate that's been on recent Fitbit models called Pure Pulse.
This heart rate is supposed to get more accurate tracking and also help with more accurate sleep readings.
So far it's been a little bit up and down.
But we're gonna keep testing it and give an update as we do a full review.
Even though the [UNKNOWN] has a larger screen than the [UNKNOWN], it's significantly smaller than the Fitbit Versa or other smart watches.
And it's not color.
However, it is a pretty bright grayscale OLED screen.
So it looks crisp and moves smoothly, and there are a few watch faces that you pick within the Fitbit app.
But there is no watch face store, unlike the Fitbit Versa and Ionic, and there's no app store.
While there are a couple of app-like functions, there are no others that you can shop for and add.
The interactions with the Charge 3 are done using your finger, or with a really clever little haptic kind of button on the side.
There's an indentation, and when you press in it has a vibration, it feels like a button.
It brings you back to the main menu, turns the screen on and off Or if you're in an exercise, it will pause and then stop the workout.
Navigating is a little bit worky in the sense that, you do have to do a lot of swiping to pick features.
Not a lot is immediately done with this sidebar, so if you're looking for instant get up and go workouts, the [UNKNOWN] has more shortcuts.
You see here you can start a run.
There is basic fitness stats.
Not a ton, but enough.
You can bring up relax which is FitBit's breathing relaxation app where you take breaths and it will tell you if it calms you down.
These are always kind of weird because I prefer to not look at electronics to relax.
There's also timers, which is timer or stopwatch.
Nice to have.
The vibration on this actually feels pretty strong.
Weather is there, although sometimes it doesn't sync.
It's a little bit funky.
Certainly not nearly as effortless as using say an Apple watch with an iPhone.
And that's it.
It's a pretty bare bone set of stuff but a step up over what you've gotten before on the charge too.
For $150, this basically has all the basic tracking tools you need, and fits its app is really great.
It's got a community, there's a lot of tools in there, I really like using it But you might not need the Charge 3, if you already have a Charge 2.
Or you might prefer to wait for a holiday sale, and see if the [UNKNOWN], which has a lot of other watch face options, is available too.
Versa does a lot of the same stuff, and again, it's the watch faces and apps.
The Apple Watch Series 4, doesn't have sleep tracking.
It doesn't have longer battery life like these Fitbits do, but it does have a lot faster hook-ins, not to mention speakerphone, much more robust music playback, better contactless payments, the ability to add cellular.
So that's kind of in its own territory.
A couple of annoying things about the Fitbit Charge 3, it has yet another proprietary charger.
This keeps happening with Fitbits, and this clip-on one is not the same as the clip-on ones from other models.
So hang on to your specific Fitbit charger.
And the bands are also new this time, so if you have previous Fitbits, they won't work.
The good news is that these new bands, I tried out a silicon perforated sport one, And a nice woven one that you can detach and attach a lot more easily than the Fitbit Versa.
I hope that helps.
We're gonna have a lot more on Fitbit in the future.
And I'm gonna keep wearing Fitbit Charge here on my wrist.
So far, it's only been about two days and I'm down to about 64% battery life.