Thoughts on the FitBit Charge

Today is more and more about  personal health and those who know me a bit are aware I like gadgets. When I became an Addapp labs member a while ago, I got to chance to try out the Beddit sleep monitor. The Beddit sensor tracks your sleep quality, heart rate, and breathing under the sheets, while you sleep. Basically it is a strap that you have to put on your mattress and then it sends the measure data to the Bedditt app on your smartphone. With the light and noise sensors of your mobile device your sleep analysis is enriched. My conclusion was that the Bedditt sleep monitor gives you a quite accurate, even scientific insight into how you sleep.

The thing that I disliked about the Bedditt, was that you need to have your phone on all night and Bluetooth up and the Beddit needs to be plugged in a wall socket. It takes some time to set this up each night, and when I sleep I have my phone in airplane mode so that nobody can interrupt me and it saves battery also. Let’s say it is not that user-friendly. Also, the strap got off the mattress in meantime.

Today I am using FitBit to monitor my sleep. The FitBit Charge is a really simple activity tracker. It lits up and shows me the time when I look at it, which makes it really intuitive to use.  Other data points are steps walked, distance covered, calories burnt and stairs taken.

I wear the Charge on my non-dominant wrist. You hardly feel it sits there and the strap is soft and feels good. The FitBit device is very effective in what it does and there are actually no dislikes. The battery lasts the entire week and that is pretty amazing in my opinion. The Charge doesn’t interfere with my daily activities but is part of it.

What I like most about it is that it improves my productivity. It pushes me to go out and empty the trash, to use my car less et cetera so that I can obtain my daily target.  A cool feature is that it lets you track your exercise too while running or biking, so that I don’t have to wear my TomTom all the time. Perhaps an integrated GPS would have been fine, but that’s not what the Charge was designed for. It remains an activity tracker.

The data also seems to be quite accurate. As for my sleep monitoring, it rightly measures when I go to sleep and when I wake up. The only thing that is not near the truth is the times I am restless. This is logical, because it doesn’t measure brainwaves.  If you really want to improve your sleep quality, go for the Bedditt or even better: get yourself examined by a doctor.

I think the guys at FitBit also did a great job at visualizing the data. The app is user friendly. There’s a whole lot of analytics, allowing you to essentially manage your wellbeing and maximize your performance. I am a happy user!

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