Fitbit unveiled a new fitness tracker yesterday at an event held at New York’s Trump Soho hotel. Fitbit aren’t really known for making the most fashion-friendly wearables, but it looks like the company’s aesthetic department have been putting in overtime from what we’ve seen so far in 2016.
The new fitness tracker is called the Fitbit Alta. The word Alta means “high” in Latin, so the name could possibly mean “Fitbit High on Fashion”, “Fitbit High-Society”, or “Fitbit it’s High-Time You Made a Decent Looking Wearable”.. We’ll probably never know..
The new Fitbit Alta isn’t the most feature-packed fitness tracker, but neither is the Fitbit Flex which is still one of the best-selling wearables. The new entry looks kind of like a posh crossbreed with a Fitbit Flex mummy and Fitbit Charge daddy.
You might ask, what makes the Alta stylish? Afterall it’s still just a band. The answer lies in the versatility and the collection of interchangeable bands and bracelets allowing you to easily change colors and materials to match your outfits. The collection consists of classic sport and leather bands in various colors, and metal bracelets. There will also be a gold bracelet and designs by Tory Burch coming soon.
The new Fitbit Alta doesn’t have an optical heart rate monitor like the Charge HR and the upcoming Fitbit Blaze, and there’s no GPS like you’ll find on the Surge. The feature set is closer to the to the best-selling Fitbit Flex, apart from the Alta delivers notifications for incoming calls, texts and calendar alerts.
It has a monochrome OLED display which is activated by tapping the top, and you can choose from a selection of vertical or horizontal clock faces. The Alta takes care of the activity tracking fundamentals: steps taken, distance travelled, calories burned and active minutes. If the steps and distance tracking is anything like the Flex or Charge HR (which it probably is), that means it will be pretty accurate – we’ve reviewed all the Fitbits and found they’re about 98% accurate.
If you’ve been plonked in chair for what Fitbit considers to be too long, the Alta will vibrate and remind you to move. The move alert is something that never works its magic on me, I’m currently wearing a Garmin Vivosmart HR and it keeps on buzzing, trying to get me off my *rse – but to no avail.. Maybe if it electrocuted me instead.. That might get me moving.
Onboard the Alta is Fitbit’s SmartTrack feature which automatically recognizes when you’re exercising and records your efforts in the Fitbit app and you can share your stats on the Fitbit Leaderboard.
The Alta also wants to be your bedtime buddy. It automatically detects when you nod off and provides reports on your sleep quality and duration. My second favorite way of being woken up in the morning is a nice little silent buzz to the wrist – it sure beats those old metal alarm clocks. You can set the Fitbit Alta to pleasantly vibrate when it’s time to climb out of the sack.
Fitbit say their new wearable has a battery life of up to 5 days – nothing out the ordinary. It’s no surprise that it’s only splash-resistant like all of its ancestors. The Fitbit app is compatible with iOS, Android and Windows. You can also access your dashboard on a desktop/laptop.
The Fitbit Alta is available to pre-order now at Fitbit.com and will be shipping in Early March 2016.
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The fitness tracking trend has been universally embraced, i.e, you don’t have to be training for the Ironman world championships to enjoy the benefits. The majority of people don’t need loads of fancy features for running, cycling, swimming etc. That being said, we reckon the Fitbit Alta is going to follow in the footsteps of the highly successful Fitbit Flex and become the best-selling activity tracker of 2016.
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