One of Australia's most popular fitness wearable devices, and definitely one of the more common devices worn by the staff at OzStraps HQ, the Fitbit Charge; has just received a much anticipated update. Let's give a round of applause and welcome the fifth iteration in the series, the new Fitbit Charge 5.
The question is though, for those of you who already own the previous Fitbit Charge 4, is it worth upgrading to the new and shiny Fitbit Charge 5?
Let's be honest, there is only so much you can do design wise for a small fitness tracking device like the Fitbit Charge 5. However, we do believe that Fitbit have nailed the small form factor of the Fitbit Charge devices in the past which has contributed to the overall success of the product.
The new Fitbit Charge 5 is no different, maintaining the small rectangle like footprint which makes the device lightweight and comfortable on the wrist. With a device like the Fitbit Charge 5 where you are encouraged to wear the device on your wrist at all times (even while sleeping), this is very good news.
What Fitbit have done with the new revision of the Charge 5 however, is smoothed out the edges of the device. Where the previous iteration of the device (the Fitbit Charge 4) had shaper edges and lines on the edge of the screen area of the device, the Charge 5 is much softer, and almost gives the impression of a slight curve on the edges. This allows for an overall much sleeker looking device that is subtle on your wrist, great for something that you might be wearing 24/7!
This new device also supports a whole variety of new Fitbit Charge 5 bands, and as always we have you covered for those here at Ozstraps! If aesthetics are something that you care about on your devices, perhaps this could be a reason for you to upgrade to that new Fitbit Charge 5 this Christmas.
You're buying a smartwatch, so it better be smart right? Let's take a look at the new and improved geeky stuff that the Fitbit Charge 5 brings to the table when compared to its predecessor.
One of the most striking and most obvious improvements to the Fitbit Charge 5 is the new screen it has, powered by AMOLED technology. Fitbit claims that this screen is two times as bright as the previous Fitbit Charge 4. This is the same screen technology used in the latest flagship smartphones (e.g. Apple iPhone, Samsung Galaxy), so it is a change we're very happy about.
This may be particularly important for those who often find themselves outdoors for work or exercise and have found it hard to see what the screens on their smartwatches are showing due to sunny conditions. Fitbit have also included the capability for an "Always-On" display this time around with the Fitbit Charge 5, meaning that you no longer need to raise your wrist and wait for that awkward second or so each time before the screen turns on.
The Fitbit Charge 5 also brings ECG (electrocardiogram) and EDA (electrodermal activity) testing. These were features that were previously only available on the Fitbit Sense, however are now available on the smaller Fitbit Charge 5 as well.
The ECG sensors on the device enable monitoring of heart health, which can assist in those who see irregularities to consult a professional to look into things further. The EDA sensors on the other hand, focus on stress and mental health management - this may be particularly important for many, especially during the tough times we are all facing during the COVID pandemic.
While not an official measure by any means, the daily usability of a wearable device that has become very important to me in recent times. While the device may have all these useful health and fitness tracking capabilities, it is essentially useless if you don't like wearing it right?
The good news is that the Fitbit Charge 5, like its predecessors, is very usable. What I mean by this is that I have no issues with keeping it on my wrist throughout the day and night, and do not find it a chore to wear. This may obviously vary from person to person though!
It is very easy to recommend the Fitbit Charge 5, it is definitely the most feature packed and capable Charge device the company has released thus far. However, whether or not you upgrade to a new Fitbit Charge 5 if you own one of the older devices is a harder question to answer.
The choice in our opinion comes down to whether or not you will utilise one of the new featuresets provided by the Fitbit Charge 5. For example, if ECG or EDA functionality is of high importance to you, then it is definitely worth the upgrade - as no other Fitbit Charge device supports these features. If not, then perhaps considering skipping this iteration and waiting for the next model.
Overall, Fitbit has definitely improved on the Fitbit Charge formula with the Charge 5, for some of the die-hard fans in the office who love their new tech the new brighter AMOLED screen that it sports is enough to take the plunge to upgrade this year!