Best Fitness Tracker 2016

Top 7 Fitness Trackers You Can Buy

Best Rated
Fitbit Surge
Best Seller
TomTom Touch Body
Microsoft Band 2
Fitbit Charge
Garmin Vivosmart
Fitbit One
Best Deal
Fitbit Flex
ModellFitbit SurgeTomTom Touch BodyMicrosoft Band 2Fitbit ChargeGarmin VivosmartFitbit OneFitbit Flex
Our Rating
Best-Reviews.co.uk
Rating1.3VERY GOOD
Best-Reviews.co.uk
Rating1.4VERY GOOD
Best-Reviews.co.uk
Rating1.5GOOD
Best-Reviews.co.uk
Rating1.6GOOD
Best-Reviews.co.uk
Rating1.7GOOD
Best-Reviews.co.uk
Rating2.0GOOD
Best-Reviews.co.uk
Rating2.1GOOD
Device TypeWrist BandWrist BandWrist BandWrist BandWrist BandClip-onWrist Band
Battery Life5 days5 days2 days5 days7 days10 days5 days
Display TypeOLED DisplayOLED DisplayOLED DisplayOLED DisplayOLED DisplayOLED DisplayLED Display
CompatibilityAndroid, iOS, Windows, Mac, WebAndroid, iOS, Windows, MacAndroid, iOS, Windows PhoneAndroid, iOS, Windows, Mac, WebAndroid, iOS, Windows, MacAndroid, iOS, WindowsAndroid, iOS, Windows, Mac
Water ResistanceSplash-proofSplash-proofSplash-proofSplash-proofWaterproof up to 50mSplash-proofSplash-proof
Burnt Calorie Counter
Heart Rate Monitor
Sleep Tracker
GPS
Weight51 g10 gn.i.26 g30 g8 gn.i.
(Special) Features
  • Smart Notifications
  • Music Control
  • TomTom MySports App
  • Sports Mode
  • Smart Notifications
  • Music Control
  • Real Time Stats
  • Smart Notifications
  • Silent Alarm for Sleeping
  • Real Time Synchronisation
See Offer
Best Rated
Fitbit Surge
Fitbit Surge
  • Smart Notifications
  • Music Control
147,99 €
Best Seller
TomTom Touch Body
TomTom Touch Body
  • TomTom MySports App
  • Sports Mode
119,90 €
Microsoft Band 2
Microsoft Band 2
  • Smart Notifications
  • Music Control
244,46 €
Fitbit One
Fitbit One
  • Silent Alarm for Sleeping
69,00 €
Best Deal
Fitbit Flex
Fitbit Flex
  • Real Time Synchronisation
59,99 €

Things You Should Know For Our Fitness Tracker Reviews

We’ve had a look at the best fitness bands 2016, and – surprise surprise – the popular new trend is not an easy buy if you really look into it. But what is the best fitness tracker for cycling? The top 5 features your fitness band should have, what to look out for, and what fitness tracker apps are there? Have a look at our fitness tracker reviews 2016 for the best fitness trackers you can buy in the UK today – we are more than ready to tell you everything you need to know!

For a quick overview of the best fitness bands available to buy in the UK right now, check out our recommendations below: Best activity trackers. Best fitness bands. Best heart rate monitors. Best GPS watches.

Why a fitness tracker?

Tell them your age, height, and gender, and you’re ready to go. Keep track of your steps, distance, calories and even sleep with these handy fitness coaches.

Fitness trackers are a motivational gadget to people for getting more exercise and living a healthier lifestyle, giving you a more of less detailed overview on your activity. Some, but not all, have a display which shows this information, and they’re either worn on your wrist like smartwatches or clipped onto your clothes. The data they store is synchronised with your smartphone, tablet or PC which means you can get a detailed view on your activity, compare with your previous results and sometimes also compete with friends.

Before you purchase a fitness tracker, you should know what you can do with it while being realistic about your goals. Everyone looking for a fitness tracker should consider the activities they currently do, and the ones they want to do.

Those new to exercise, or those just looking to move more, will get everything they need from basic trackers that track steps and calories. However, those who are regularly active will want a device with more advanced features, such as heart rate monitoring or GPS tracking. Not only do these features go beyond surface-level insights, but they also give you the information you need to get better at working out.

For serious athletes training for the next event, you’ll want to go pro. TomTom fitness trackers and Garmin fitness trackers are devices that track everything from pace to intervals to elevation and more, whilst Polar fitness trackers will unlike most others be completely waterproof. It is recommended to check the fitness tracker reviews on important specifications you might want.

Choosing a fitness tracker that suits you

There are various features that different types of fitness bands may or may not have, and these are often factors that may make or break your decision to buy a cheap fitness tracker or rather a more expensive one. Some are more of a fit band for walking but not for swimmers, and some are a fitness bracelet rather than a fitness wristband. But which fitness tracker is the best fitness tracker UK for you? These are our top 5 features that you should decide for before splurging for the wrong type of fitness tracker:

Design (Bracelet, wristband, clip-on, etc…)
Waterproofness
Burnt calories counter
Heart-rate monitoring / sleep tracking
GPS

Below you’ll find a bunch of information to help you understand the choice of these features.

Design:

A very important question to ask yourself before choosing your best fitness tracker is the type of form factor you want. The comments section on Amazon or similar sites can be used quite well as a fitness tracker comparison, and will likely help you decide between some of the more similar or cheap fitness trackers out there. You need to be able to wear the device all day, after all. Fitness trackers are usually bracelets, watches, or clip-ons. Most clip-on devices these days can also be worn on the wrist, but not vice versa. Bracelets and watches are hard to lose. Clip-ons can fall off or get thrown into the wash.

Watches typically have a more secure closure than bracelets. For example, the Fitbit fitness tracker watch Charge HR, which shows the time when you press a button, uses a traditional belted watch closure, whereas the Jawbone fitness tracker UP24, which has no display, doesn’t fasten at all. The Jawbone UP24 also snags on clothing easily.

However, bracelets and watches can get in the way when typing on a computer or washing dishes, for example. If you’re bothered by having something on your wrist 24/7, you’re probably better off with a clip-on. Additionally, wrist-worn devices are not always eye-catching accessories to your outfit.

Clip-on devices are smaller and more discreet when worn on a waistband or the front of a bra. Examples include the Misfit Flash and the Jawbone UP Move. These clip-ons don’t have a display, meaning you have to rely on a smartphone to see your tracked activity.

Another point worth mentioning is the screen type of the fitness tracker (none / LEDs / smartwatch-type…), as it is not irrelevant to most people if they can see their progress or the time upon simple glance, or if it might for example hinder them from concentrating on the main goal, and would rather wait until they send the information to a mobile device and/or PC.

Waterproofness:

To make things easy – there are four stages of waterproofness:
1. Not water resistant
2. Splash Resistant (okay with sweat, rain & splashes)
3. Water Resistant (Splash Resistant + ok to shower with)
4. Water Proof (Water Resistant + ok to swim with)

Accordingly for swimmers: You should really look for a fitness tracker built, of course, to endure water like the Moov Now – It is made for swimming and running, and is about built-in coaching, which is designed to offer metrics on improving your swimming rather than just feeding back in it. Waterproof to 50m the new Moov app has a dedicated swimming mode, which you turn on before you leave the changing room. When you get back you’ll get feedback on your stroke type, rate, distance and efficiency, as well as lap times and an overall indicator of your pool stamina.

Burnt calories counter:

The fairly accurate value shown on your display/app representing the calories you’ve burnt throughout your exercise is ever too motivating to reach or even increase day by day by day, and if this is what you are aiming for, I have good news for you; Close to every fitness tracker has this feature. For this reason, it is often a good idea to go for a cheap fitness tracker, and upgrade when it was of good use and you feel more secure about your choice. It will help you keep track of your actual accomplishments as you go, and is the key feature for many users of fitness trackers for swimming and running and cycling.

Reaching from a numerical value due to top, or actual vocal support from your device, the burnt calorie counter is the “motivational lifecoach“ accompanying you while you exercise.

Heart rate monitoring:

Heart rate monitoring sounds like the best feature ever, and for some it is, but there are different kinds of heart rate monitors, and frankly, some people don’t need it at all. A built-in heart rate monitor drives up the price.

Optical heart rate monitors are the ones built into the device itself. The Apple Watch does this kind of heart rate monitoring, as do the Basis Peak and the Fitbit Surge. These devices can read your heart rate all day long. Some trackers only take your heart rate while you’re working out, however. Two examples are the Mio Alpha 2 and the Mio Fuse. They are meant for heart rate training, not for watching your resting heart rate.

Some very good fitness trackers don’t have a heart rate monitor built in, but can pair with a chest strap. Most every device from Garmin and Polar supports a chest strap, and you can usually bundle one in when purchasing a tracker for an extra £30 or £40.

Finally, if you’re interested in knowing your resting heart rate, you don’t need to buy a fitness tracker with heart rate monitor. Many smartphone fitness tracker apps, including Withings Healthmate, let you take your heart rate in about 15 seconds using the phone’s camera. Check your pulse once or twice a day, and you’re good to go.

Sleep tracking:

Many fitness trackers record your sleep. When they do, they generally watch for movement using a three-axis accelerometer to a more sensitive degree than they do during the day.

Some devices, including the Jawbone fitness tracker UP3, report graphs showing the times when you were in light sleep and deep sleep based on motion. The Basis Peak goes one step further, using your heart rate and skin temperature to help it detect when you’re in a REM cycle.

The Jawbone line of trackers are especially utile used as a sleep tracker, because you can connect the UP app to a companion fitness tracker app called UP Coffee that tracks caffeine intake and correlates it with sleep.

GPS:

GPS tracking is an important feature for runners, cyclists, hikers or anyone who wants to see where they’ve been during a workout. In addition to pinpointing your exact location, GPS monitors can measure your speed. Without a fitness tracker with GPS, you’ll need to take your phone with you on a run to accurately record distance and where you went. GPS is notoriously hard on batteries, so expect hours – not days- of battery life when using a cheap fitness tracker with GPS on.

As touched on before, the more expensive trackers usually include the built-in optical heart rate monitors and GPS, and often, these features are tailored toward athletes and exercise enthusiasts. Don’t get suckered into buying a tracker with a heart rate monitor if your primary activity is walking; it’s an unnecessary expense. If you walk and don’t do much else, there are great options in the just under £50 – £120 range.

Software

As well as the hardware, software (the fitness tracker app) is a crucial piece of any activity tracker. For some, it will be more important than the hardware. Why? Simply: It is where you make sense of the information the tracker collects. The software often provides extra features, such as the ability to compete with friends, track food and drink intake, monitor you weight and more. Conversely, the app can be severely limited, poorly designed or worse.

Also a key factor, as stated by Angela McIntyre, research director at Gartner: ”If there is a particular activity you like, like swimming, make sure the activity tracker and the software are designed for it. People who have a favorite activity that is less common, such as jumping rope, may want to check that the activity is recognized by the software”.

Some apps are more motivational than others, and this can be the difference between merely recording what little exercise you do and actually improving your fitness and health. Picking one of the devices capable of running the best apps is more often than not a factor whether or not you will be happy with your fitness trackers performance or not. A good example for a good app is Fitbit’s – It lets you record all kinds of data that many other companies don’t, such blood pressure, calories consumed, allergy severity, and stress level. Withings is also a favorite for providing a comprehensive account where you can measure your weight, glucose readings, and all kinds of health information.

A few apps namely recommended by users are Strava (for both running and cycling), Runtastic PRO, and Cyclemeter (for bicycling specifically).

For all others who don’t plan on purchasing a fitness tracker: There is the variant of using your smartphone as a “cheap fitness tracker“. You can download apps that can specifically measure certain things like your heart rate etc., although they will not be as accurate as a real fitbit or garmin fitness tracker.

Can’t wait to acquire your own?

To round off this article, here is a compilation we’ve made based on fitness tracker reviews 2016! The top 5 trusted brands with their correlating best fitness tracker UK are:
Basis – Basis Peak
Fitbit – Fitbit Surge
Mio – Mio Alpha 2
Jawbone – Jawbone UP24
Garmin – Garmin Vivoactive

Tip: Amazon and eBay often have discounted prices on the top selling activity trackers – you can also check out the fitness tracker reviews given by previous buyers!