Fitbit Charge 3 Review: A Perfect Blend of Fitness and Smartwatch

Is the Fitbit Charge 3 worth buying? If you like a combination of sports and smartwatch features, give it a go. Read a more detailed review here.

Fitbit Charge 3 is one of the best pure fitness tracker bands from the manufacturer. From all the Fitbit sports bands, this one fits all needs when it comes to monitoring physical activity and health.

Many people praise it for checking daily habits, social fitness, and adding activity challenges. It is much more fitness-tuned than the Apple Watch, which is more like a small smartphone with all the apps worn on your wrist. Read on to get all the characteristics and benefits of Fitbit Charge 3 in this review.

fitbitcharge3 overview

Announced in August 2018, this fitness tracker remains one of the best company’s models. It has a variety of exercise tracking options in a more lightweight design than the previous model. Its bigger screen and waterproof properties will make you love it.


Our Verdict

Overall, this device is much better than the predecessor. It has more advanced smartphone functions such as notification replies, waterproof design, smart exercise recognition, Fitbit Pay support, and larger responsive touchscreen.

However, people who like colorful screens might not enjoy the device. Plus, there aren’t watch face or app store due to the small size of the device. Also, sport lovers might find the lack of GPS or music storage and control inconvenient.

Pros:

  • Light design
  • Large screen
  • Completely waterproof
  • Many exercise options
  • Smart health and sleep tracking
  • Convenient mobile app

Cons:

  • No built-in GPS
  • No music storage
  • No watch face store
  • No app store
  • Monochrome screen


Device Overview

 

BatteryUp to 7 days (Charge time ~2 hrs)
Syncing rangeUp to 6 meters
Exercise modesRun, Swim, Yoga, Circuit training, Bike, Abs
Wristband measurementsSmall wristband: 5.5 to 7.1 inches; Large wristband: 7.1 to 8.7 inches
ColorsGraphite/Black, Graphite/White Silicone, Rose Gold/Lavender, Rose Gold/Berry, Rose Gold/Blue Grey
SwimmingSwim proof ( water resistance up to 50m)
Health FeaturesHeart rate tracking, Sleep monitoring, Activity trends, Healthy insights, Personalized guidance
AppsWeather app, Calls, Texts, Smartphone app, notifications, Radio, Fitbit Pay

 

Check Price


Design

The wristband has an elegant design. It will look good on both smaller and larger hands. The OLED screen is the same width as the band, which makes it look minimalistic. The screen is comfortable to show time, steps, and heart rate.

Fitbit Charge 3 design

Due to its lightweight design, this tracker is easy to wear. Indeed, not all bands fit comfortably, but this one is an exception. You may choose from a black silicone box, perforated sport band, and woven nylon. People who used all the bands indicated that silicone one is the most preferable due to its pleasant touch.

The band is thinner than the previous models. It looks less chunky,  which might be better for people with a smaller wrist. Also, the color selection is wider, so you may choose from more reserved black and grey to brighter white, lavender, or berry colors.

The Fitbit Charge is from aluminum, which makes the device light and comfortable. All the bands are easy to snap on and off because of a simple release mechanism. To snap the watch on, you need to use specific proprietary connections. Still, they aren’t difficult to attach and are easy to use.

The screen is black and white, which you have to note when choosing a device. It still has a good resolution, and it is quite large with a very responsive touchscreen. It displays information well and clear, even in the bright daylight. Plus, the monochrome display is better than colorful in terms of energy consumption and battery life.


Easy to Use

Fitbit Charge 3 allows easy swiping to see daily activities, fitness goals, and stats such as sleep, stand hours, stairs climbed, distance, and active minutes. If you swipe down, you can see notifications. You can also discreetly control individual app notifications.

It’s worth noting that Fitbit Charge 3 doesn’t have pressable buttons, and you will operate the device with the help of the touchscreen. Navigation is with the help of the display, which might not fit all. Still, there is an inductive button on the left side to wake or sleep the device. This button needs some time to get used to because it needs a certain tap strength to respond.

To start a workout, you need to swipe to the Exercise app on your device. After it, you tap, swipe to the type of activity, and tap. Many find this process a bit annoying because it comprises clicking some buttons. To do this, you have to click the side button twice and tap the Finish icon. Unfortunately, you cannot program the button clicks the way you want.

When you start a workout, the display can only show three pieces of information at once. If you want to see more, tap the display to change metrics. Unfortunately, there are also no remote music controls, so you can’t start playback or set a playlist from your phone.


App Feature

In general, Charge 3 is getting closer to what is called a smartwatch. It features smartwatch-like functionality, such as replying to messages, timers, and weather forecasts. In the Charge 3 version, you don’t have an onboard GPS, but you can connect to your phones’.

Fitbit Charge 3 apps

The device can provide you with notifications from all the apps on your phone. You still can’t download apps because of the small size of the device, but you can reject and accept calls from Charge 3.

You can reply to instant messages, but at the moment, there are only standard replies like “sorry, I will reply to your later.” Still, it is quite good for the small wristband and greatly helps in urgent cases. Many versions of the device have NFC for payments, so there is a Fitbit Pay option.

  • Fitbit Smartphone App

The app is compatible with iOS and Android. It is detailed, intuitive, and easy to navigate. It syncs via Bluetooth, which provides a faster experience. The app presents the data for the day, such as water and food intake, the number of steps walked, exercises, and health metrics. You can set a goal if you want to move more using the metrics, which is convenient for those who would like to change their routine.


Health & Sports Features

Sports and health features are primary in this device. It has 24/7 heart rate tracking, guided breathing for relaxation, guided workouts, and swim tracking. Also, there is an ability to track outdoor running, walking, treadmill running, and weight training. You can use Charge 3 to track interval workouts and bike rides.

fitbit charge Health & Sports Features

All these trackers work very well. The device will track your type of exercise automatically without a need to click buttons and start sessions manually. For example, if you start running, the device will detect that and even let you stop the workout and renew it without escaping a session.

The device doesn’t have a built-in GPS, so you can only use it when paired with the phone. It might be inconvenient for those who don’t like to carry a phone with them on runs or hikes.The good news for women is, Charge 3 has female health-tracking, so it’s possible to use the device to track the next period.

  • Fitness Tracking

When it comes to casual fitness tracking, Charge 3 is best. It can collect data automatically, after which you can read it on the display of the wristband. Also, the watch stores information in Fitbit’s phone app, so you can also keep track of all changes from there.

Fitbit Charge 3 has an improved heart rate tracking sensor. It uses green and red LEDs that allow it to track more health features and ensures correct sleep and heart rate tracking.

  • Sleep Tracking

The device can track all stages of sleep, including light sleep, deep sleep, and REM. This feature is very accurate, as well as the device’s heart rate detections. The device is comfortable to use while sleeping.

There is a convenient silent alarm mode that vibrates the tracker to gently wake you up. The function is useful if you don’t want to wake up anyone sleeping nearby. Still, for heavy sleepers, this might not be enough.


Battery performance

The battery of this device is powerful. It allows you to use the device for seven days without recharging it. If you are using the device intensively, it might take less than that, but for moderate activity, you will get the promised six days.

If you use the device all the time, including sleep tracking, you might have trouble finding a moment to recharge the device. It needs two hours to recharge fully, so be prepared to schedule a weekly charging. The device shows the battery percentage, so you will always know when to do it.


Fitbit Charge Models Comparison: 2, 3, 4

Fitbit Charge 3 is very close to models 2 and 4 in terms of design and functionality. Overall, models 3 and 4 have smoother designs than the 2 and have larger displays. However, functionality raises according to the model.

See this table to read a detailed comparison. Fitbit Charge 4 and 3 also have a more extensive range of exercises, pay features, and quick reply to phone notifications. They are water-resistant, and Charge 4 has a built-in GPS.

SpecificationsFitbit Charge 2Fitbit Charge 3Fitbit Charge 4
DisplayOLED tapOLED touchscreenOLED touchscreen
Battery life5 days7 days7 days
Built-in GPSNoNoYes
Sweat-proofNoYesYes
Fitbit PayNoNoYes

Conclusions

This device is a great blend between the smartwatch and a pure sports band. Like all the devices from Fitbit, Charge 3 has excellent sports and health tracking functions. It can track heart rate, sleep stages, and auto-detect exercise types without having to push buttons. It is also waterproof and has smart swim-detection properties.

In addition, it is more like a smartwatch due to Fitbit Pay, smartphone app notifications with replies, a weather app, and a timer. Still, the absence of music storage or app store sets it apart from many smartwatches. It is more on the fitness tracking side, so if these functions are primary for you, Fitbit Charge 3 seems like a great choice.

>