I got my introduction into the Fitbit fitness tracker ecosystem with the Charge HR, the first tracker they introduced with a real-time 24-hour heart rate monitor. Then Fitbit sent me the Charge 2, which I reviewed in due course as well. But with the Fitbit Charge 3, I really think they’ve hit the mark and given me everything I need in a fitness tracker.
I’ve been doing these reviews for some time now, so I decided to do something different and show you the process — how I live with and integrate into my daily life a product I’m reviewing. So, here’s One Week with the Fitbit Charge 3:
There’s nothing too revolutionary about the Charge 3 versus the Charge 2, except for the fact that it’s now waterproof! Water-resistant up to 50 meters, you can now take this with you during activities on the water like swimming, surfing, and stand-up paddleboarding without being paranoid about ruining the device. (Just don’t forget to take it off if you’re going on a dive!)
The screen is now also truly a touch screen, versus Charge 2’s tap sensitivity which allowed you to flip through the displays but not really control the device by its screen. They’ve also improved legibility by using a grayscale display, protected by a Gorilla Glass 3 screen (a design spec adapted from the Fitbit Versa).
I have to tell you, I really like the Charge 3. Although I did have to sacrifice all the nice watch bands that I’d bought for my Charge 2 since they’re not compatible, that was easily remedied by buying a third-party watch band off Lazada. (The official woven and leather straps from Fitbit look really nice, though.)
My only complaints about the Charge 3 were software-related. First, with the latest updates to the Android OS, the Fitbit mobile app has to request a few permissions (like Location and Background Data usage). If you’re not careful setting up the app you could inadvertently skip through those permissions, causing sync problems like what I encountered during my testing period.
The second software-related one was how the Charge 3 recorded swim activity. Nobody really swims nonstop unless they’re doing a time trial; instead, there are intervals and rest periods involved. The Fitbit Charge 3 only registers the amount of time you were in motion in the water, and the app doesn’t give you a breakdown of pace. So it’s great if you’re just looking to log a certain number of lengths in a pool (like the people who do 20 laps daily as exercise), but not so great if you’re actually tracking performance.
But then again, the Charge 3 is a fitness tracker, not really a dedicated swim/bike/run watch. It helps you track general fitness and exercise, and motivates you to stay active. In that respect, the Fitbit Charge 3 fits right into my lifestyle.
The Fitbit Charge 3 is available at retail partner stores nationwide, including Digital Walker, Beyond the Box, select Toby’s Sports stores, iBOOK, iCENTER, Mobile1, Globe, Gadgets in Style, Hivemind, Lazada, Zalora, Timeline, The Inbox Store, iLiberty and RUNNR stores.
Fitbit Charge 3 is available for sale at major online retailers like Lazada and Zalora for PHP 9,990 in black with a graphite aluminum case or blue gray with a rose gold aluminum case; accessories range from PHP1,690 to PHP2,990. Fitbit Charge 3 Special Edition is available for PHP10,990.