Pros / Fitbit’s app is the best in our review, and it makes the Charge 2 an overall helpful fitness tool.
Cons / The Fitbit Charge 2 isn’t waterproof, so you can’t track your heart rate during a swim or even wear it in the shower.
Verdict / The Charge 2 adapts to your habits and helps you improve your lifestyle by tracking your heart rate as well as other fitness metrics, so it is a good choice for everyday activity and zone training.
The Fitbit Charge 2 is a heart rate monitor watch with a nice touchscreen and select smartwatch features. It’s not as bulky as a smartwatch, but it’s still easy to see your heart rate, phone calls, texts, step data and more. Combined with the Fitbit app, the Charge 2 is an excellent tracker that can help you set and meet your short- and long-term fitness goals.
The Fitbit Charge 2 is one of the best heart rate monitor watches for heart rate zone training. Since the sensor is on the wristband, you don’t need extra equipment like a chest strap. Also, the device continuously tracks your heart rate, so you don’t need to set it in a specific mode as with other trackers. Because it’s a continuous heart rate monitor, you can view your resting heart rate data as well as your heart rate throughout the day. For example, if a truck cuts you off on the freeway, you view your heart rate spike in the app later in the day.
During testing, we found that the Charge 2 wasn’t the most accurate heart rate monitor. It tends to track high. For example, if your actual heart rate is 80 bpm, the Charge 2 displays something like 85 bpm. Since it’s not a medical-grade device, inconsistencies like this are normal. However, other trackers were more accurate.
The Fitbit Charge 2 tracks other fitness metrics as well. This wrist heart rate monitor has an accelerometer and an altimeter to track steps, stairs, calories, distance, duration, etc. It even tracks your movements while you sleep. When you wake up, you can view a chart detailing how many times you tossed and turned, how long your slept, and if you woke up at all during the night.
You can customize the watch display by choosing the font, size and optional stats that show up on the clock face. When you raise your arm, the Charge 2 automatically turns on and tells you the time and the metric you’ve set it to show – we set ours to show the time and the tester’s heart rate. You don’t need to push any buttons, as this feature is completely hands-free.
The Fitbit Charge 2 is one of the best Bluetooth heart rate monitor watches. It syncs with your phone continuously or manually, depending on your settings and how long you want to stretch out the battery life. You don’t have to push buttons or enter a specific mode to sync either; you just open the app and it starts.
The Fitbit’s app is our top pick, and it stores all your data, charts, graphs and history. You can view your progress over time or just your goals for the day. It is also the most customizable app in our review – you can add and adjust information about your stride length, height, weight and goals. In addition, you can set your foremost goal, your fitness level, the order in which your stats appear, and more. If you already track aspects of your fitness elsewhere, you can sync your Fitbit data with many third-party apps including MyFitnessPal.
The Fitbit Charge 2 also has smartwatch notifications, including scrolling text messages, calendar notifications, vibrating call alerts and customizable alarms. The battery only lasts for about five days, depending on the settings and smartwatch notifications you use.
The device comes in six different colors, and you can buy additional wristbands made from different materials from Fitbit and third-party vendors to dress it up. Some of this heart rate monitor’s biggest downsides are that it’s bulky and only water-resistant. The screen is large compared to those on Fitbit’s slim fitness trackers, and it doesn’t curve enough to conform to your wrist. It’s still comfortable though, and the wristband is completely adjustable. Since it isn’t waterproof, you shouldn’t take it swimming. Fitbit even recommends you take it off before you shower and wipe off excess sweat quickly.
Fitbit is one of the top heart rate monitor manufacturers for casual athletes, and it’s easy to contact the company’s support reps by phone, email or live chat. The Charge 2 is covered by a one-year warranty.
- Heart Rate Accuracy
The Fitbit Charge 2 is one of the best heart rate monitors, no matter what activities you participate in, your athletic abilities, or your fitness level. Fitness-fanatics can use the Charge 2 to keep their heart rates up, and those just wanting to drop a few pounds can use it to track calories, steps and active minutes.