Review: Fitbit Charge 2
Comfortable to wearLong battery lifePurePulse heart rate monitor
No GPS (requires smartphone)Gesture recognition occasionally unresponsiveWristband material could be more durable
8.8Reliable tracking & user-friendly app
User-friendly9
Comfort8
Consistent tracking9.5

Multi-sports mode, guided breathing sessions and a PurePulse heart rate monitor as standard: the Fitbit Charge 2 is quite possibly the best all-round piece of fit tech on the market.

One of the best things about the tracker for me is the step counter. It seems to be pretty accurate (even when I try to trick it by shaking my wrist) and the hourly notifications to move encourage you to get up and walk around. Whilst I tended to exceed my 10,000 steps a day target, I was shocked by just how sedentary I am during work hours! I soon started making more of an effort to take a break each hour and go for a walk. The alert to get 250 steps per hour is a great reminder of how important it is to move regularly.

Another of my favourite features is the two minute guided breathing sessions.

You can do the two minute guided sessions using just the watch, as it guides you with gentle, light vibrations. These vibrations notify you when to inhale and exhale, so you’re not sat staring at the watch face, but can close your eyes and let the watch guide you instead.

It’s easy to set, change and track your fitness goals via the app — you can even set goals for hydration, food and sleep! It’s possible to track specific exercises like weight training, running or yoga and see your workout stats on display, but the Charge 2 doesn’t let you track some exercises — like swimming or martial arts — and I think it would be great if you could manually add these to the app.

I’m a keen runner and I’m currently training for my first half marathon (eek!), so I couldn’t wait to try out the Run mode. Once I figured out which buttons to press, I was impressed with the functionality of it: Run mode is responsive and pretty accurate when you use the GPS on your phone. You can track you time, pace and distance, then analyse your performance on the app. It doesn’t offer an intensive breakdown of your pace but I found it substantial enough to show when I was progressing and my areas of improvement.

I found the sleep tracker really insightful as it shows just how much sleep you’re getting, what times of the night you are restless or awake, and the sleep goals function is quite a nice touch! I personally found wearing the wristband in bed actually quite annoying and ended up taking it off in my sleep a few times, so I’ve given up on tracking this for the time being!

The display turns on when you rotate your wrist to look at it, helping to conserve battery life, however I  have found that it isn’t always responsive. You are able to turn the screen on via the side button, but it’s not so great when your hands are occupied. This minor shortcoming is redeemed by the notifications function which allows text, call and calendar alerts to show up on your watch.

It’s also worth mentioning that the battery life is fantastic — it seems to typically last for around 4-5 days  which is great — and you can easily check the battery levels via the app.

Overall, the Fitbit Charge 2 is a great all-rounder.

If you’re looking for a simple to use fitness tracker that monitors your heartbeat, your workouts and gives a basic overview of your sleeping patterns, this is for you.

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