Speaker 1: This is the Fitbit charge five and it takes the best parts of Fitbit smart Watchers, and it packs it into a much smaller form factor. Oh yeah. And most importantly, it costs a lot less In a world filled with smart Watchers, fitness, trackers, feel kind of liberating. They're smaller. They generally have better battery life and they're easier to use for most people looking for a do it or fitness tracker. This is the Fitbit to get, and it's kind of a bargain [00:00:30] too, at $180. I've been wearing the charge five for almost two weeks. And we are gonna dive into everything from design and comfort through to ease of use fitness and health tracking. And of course, battery. And I've linked chapters in the description below.
Speaker 1: Let's talk about the hardware itself. It has a color ADE display, which is an immediate advantage over the charge four, which only had a monochrome display. You also have the option of leaving it always on, on the charge. Five, if you want to. Now, the navigation system [00:01:00] is a little bit different to what you might be used to. If you're coming from an older Fitbit, this is the first charge that doesn't have any physical buttons. You do all the interaction through the touch screen, swiping to get to different menu options, tapping to select them. And you can either swipe to go back or double tap on any screen to go straight back to the clock face. Now this might take a few tries to learn, but having come off the back of reviewing the Fitbit Luxe, which has the same navigation system, it's actually a lot easier to use on the charge.
Speaker 1: Five, thanks to the largest screen real [00:01:30] estate. Fortunately, the interface is also pretty responsive. Now, one of the big criticisms of the Fitbit displays from previous generations, at least on the charge was visibility in outdoor situations. I'm happy to that. The charge five is really bright and easy to see when you are doing an outdoor workout. For example, and I had no issue whatsoever looking down at my wrist during a workout, like a rung to see my stats. And overall, a note on comfort. I found the charge five was really inconspicuous. It's not as small [00:02:00] or as lightweight as say something like the Fitbit Luxe, but I think that is probably too small for a lot of people. This seems to be a really happy medium, and I never really found a God in the way when I would say sleeping, working out or just wearing it every day. It felt really, really comfortable.
Speaker 1: Now let's talk about some of those senses on board. You get a heart rate tracker with the ability to set high and low heart rate alerts. If your heart rate falls above or below a certain threshold, there will also be an ECG or [00:02:30] electrocardiogram app that will be activated after launch and that's to check for potential signs of in irregular heartbeat. There's an SPO two sensor for blood oxygen and skin temperature tracking. While you sleep also on board is an EA or electro activity sensor. This is the same as we saw on the Fitbit sense. The smart watch from 2020. Now what this does is essentially it's tracking minute changes in sweat, and that essentially can give you a picture of how your body is responding to stress. [00:03:00] If you have a lot of ed responses after one of those sessions, potentially that means you're feeling kind of stressed.
Speaker 1: So the idea is that all of this data comes into a stress management score that you can find in the Fitbit app after having worn the charge five for a couple of days. Now, essentially, if you have a high score means that your body is probably dealing with stress a lot better. If you have a lower score, you know, you might wanna think about doing some more mindfulness sessions alongside those stress tracking ed sessions, just to see if you can bring [00:03:30] up your score a little bit, sleep tracking works in the same way as most recent Fitbits. You get a lot of detail about things like your sleep stages, your restlessness, and even your sleeping heart rate. And of course, everything comes together in a score out of 100, because if you don't put a number on it, I guess it doesn't count now, as you can probably tell, there is a lot of data coming from this little tracker now, unfortunately like most things in life, nothing is really free.
Speaker 1: So to get the most out of the detail that you get, you will need to subscribe to the $10 a month. Fitbit premium am subscription [00:04:00] service. You do get six months free when you buy a charge five. However, Fitbit premium is the only way you're gonna be able to get those deeper sleep insights over time, as well as things like your health metrics on a deeper, more granular level, stress tracking insights, as well as fitness and workout programs, even some mindfulness sessions and nutrition programs as well. So just an idea of a potential ongoing cost. If you really like all that data. The other thing that Fitbit premium gives you, which I actually think is the flagship feature of the charge five. [00:04:30] And I kind of buried the lead a little bit on this, but I'll tell you why in just a moment, it's this thing called the daily readiness score.
Speaker 1: I like to think of this as an kind of, are you up for it? It kind of score out of 100 and it takes into account things like your activity, level, your sleep, and also your heart rate variability, to give you an idea, if you should say, do that workout today, like you're ready to push yourself, or you should maybe take a rest day and it will also suggest things like, say, maybe you need to do a hit workout today. You're up for it. [00:05:00] Or it's maybe some of your yoga is more suitable or alternatively here is a mindfulness and meditation session to take cuz you've, you know, you've had it hard day. Let's take it easy tomorrow. Now, in theory, this is kind of similar to what garment offers with its body battery, but the Fitbit version does seem like it's going to offer a little bit more in terms of actionable items based on your specific needs, but here's the rub.
Speaker 1: It wasn't active at the time of recording this review and it won't be active for the launch of the charge five. Now [00:05:30] I'm actually super bummed about this because I feel like finally Fitbit has the key to the lock. That's been closed for such a long time because we get so much data from trackers like this and smart Watchers on our wrist and knowing how to interpret it and how to take action on it can be really confusing. So I really hope that this daily readiness score is kind of gonna be the holy grail of helping me interpret all of these numbers, all of this data and make it really easy [00:06:00] to understand with actionable items that I can take to help improve my overall wellbeing. Anyway, I will keep you updated on the daily readiness score in my full written review, which I have linked in the description below and fingers crossed. It comes out pretty soon.
Speaker 1: Okay, let's talk. Some of the fitness features the charge five can of course track basics like your steps, but it also has 20 different workout types that it can track. There are six slots available on the charge five [00:06:30] itself. So you can start a workout straight from your wrist. You can swap in and out workouts to your choosing from the Fitbit app. Of course the charge five is also water resistance, so it can track swims and you can take it down to 50 meters underwater, like the older model, the charge five also has built in GPS. This means you can leave your phone at home and still be able to track things like route information and distance on your charge. Five. It does take around 10 to 15 seconds to lock onto a GPS. If you not using connected GPS, I E just using the [00:07:00] GPS on the charge five itself.
Speaker 1: And I did also compare the route information from the tracker to a control phone, and it did match up pretty well in terms of the overall route and distance information. When you start an activity, you also have the option to set a goal, say for example, a distance, a time-based or even an active own minutes goal. Now active zone minutes is Fitbit's way of calculating moderate to intense physical activity. And after you've done your workout, you'll be able to see all of your stats and metrics within the Fitbit app. I've always been a fan of [00:07:30] the Fitbit app. It's really easy to find things it's well laid out and you can also do things like overlaying heart rate information on your route and also of seeing things like your splits too. So there's a lot to dive into in that app. Now I did test the heart rate sensor against a chest strap, which is considered the gold standard. And I was pleasantly surprised with how well the charge five matched up to the strap. However, I did notice at the start of every single cardio base workout that I did. It did take around two minutes for the charge five to catch up after then, everything was far. Hopefully [00:08:00] that's something that maybe a software update down the track could address.
Speaker 1: The charge. Five has a couple of smart features on board. Most importantly, it is compatible with Android and iOS. The experience is fairly similar across both platforms. The one thing you do miss out on, though, if you pair this with an iPhone, is that you will not be able to respond to notifications from your wrist with quick replies that is only available on Android, but you still can see notifications come through. You can still choose which [00:08:30] notifications are pushed to your wrist. And most importantly, the text is really easy to see on the charge. Five. This was a big issue I had with the Fitbit. The charge five, I felt was really easy to read. I never felt like I had to pull out reading glasses or a magnifying glass to see what was going on on the screen. The charge five is missing a few things.
Speaker 1: Namely music playback control from apps on your phone, music storage. There's no speaker or microphone. Now this means that you won't be able to take [00:09:00] quick calls from your wrist by talking into it. You'll have to go to your phone for things like that. And also there is no voice assistant. Maybe you care, maybe you don't, but I do have to tell you, in case you are thinking of upgrading from an older Fitbit and wanting some of those. Now the third party app of selection is well, pretty much nonexistent. There's this fixed number of apps that you can get and that's kind of it. And you're also fairly limited in terms of the watch faces that you have to choose from. They're basic. They all look pretty [00:09:30] good, but yeah, there's not that many of them. So if you want the wide to selection, you'll probably want to look at a proper Fitbit smart watch, say like the verse three or the scents. And the one thing that I wish the charge five had, I don't care about third party apps so much on this, but I do wish it had to find my phone feature. So Fitbit, if you're listening, I would love for you to add that because I think that would be super helpful.
Speaker 1: Finally, let's get into battery life. Now, Fitbit says you'll get seven days [00:10:00] of battery life out of the charge five, which is great, but that's on paper and that's really with very light use. So things like your sleep tracking, maybe a couple of ed scans, fitness tracking, but no GPS. And you'll get seven days before you need to charge. I'm a little bit more of a heavy user. So I was able to get four full days out of the charge five and that counted things like a 30 minute GPS workout. Every day I did several Edda scans. I was wearing it pretty much 24 7 to track my [00:10:30] sleep as well. And I did not have the always on display active because that will also eat into your batter life. But four days I was pretty happy with there's no doubt that the charge five is a significant upgrade from older Fitbit trackers, like the charge for it really feels like Fitbit has taken the best parts of its smart Watchers, like the sense and the versa three, and packed it into this, which is cheaper, lighter, and most importantly, more reliable at launch than those other [00:11:00] watches were.
Speaker 1: You might be wondering about the Google and Fitbit integration. Now that Google owns the company. Well, 100%, this still feels like a Fitbit. I'm actually really glad about that. I feel like Fitbit, all I have to do now is deliver on that daily radiance score. And this is gonna be the most capable health and fitness companion that you could want. If you're looking for a Fitbit, it's got the best of all worlds. It's cheaper, it's lighter, more reliable. [00:11:30] And that's it for more details than where you can find the charge, five extra specs and of course, information about things like the new features that are coming in. I put a link in the description below. So make sure to check that one out. And of course, if you have any more questions, you can find me on Instagram, Twitter, even down on the comments. Thanks for watching. I'll catch you next time. See ya.