Please note: there are older versions of the Fitbit Charge available! The Fitbit Charge (2014) and the Fitbit Charge HR (2014).

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Fitbit Charge 2 (Small)


£70.00

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£119.90

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£119.99

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£119.99

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£119.99

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Fitbit Charge 2 (Large)


£84.99

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£119.90

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£119.99

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£119.99

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£119.99

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For those that bought either the Fitbit Charge or Fitbit Charge HR when they came out nearly two years ago (and chances are you did), the timing of the Fitbit Charge 2 release couldn’t be better.

Your straps are probably getting warn, the casing is probably getting old, not to mention problems with the charger. But as an activity tracker that has more functionality than the Alta and is cheaper than the Blaze, the Fitbit Charge 2 has a lot to offer.

 

It’s All In the Look

On the outside, the screen is four times bigger, the metal casing feels sturdier and the clasp style charger is much easier to handle.

No, it’s not as sleek as the Alta or the Flex 2, it is still a basic activity tracker after all. But the upgraded packaging shows that Fitbit have taken a keen interest in style while keeping the wearer and increased functionality in mind.

Finally interchangeable straps mean there’s no more worries of wearing it and rendering your Fitbit nigh on useless. It also means it is possible to give the straps a good wash – vital when you think even the Fitbit Charge 2 is still not waterproof.

Two different sizes offer a comfortable fit. You can also choose between classics or special edition. And there are even choices of leather or fabric bands so that Fitbit can be worn for more than just exercise (great for those prone to plastic sensitivity). While the new buckle (like that found on the Blaze and Surge) makes the fitness band feel much more secure when out on a run – it’s also a hell of a lot less fiddly to put on.

 

Bigger Screen, More Data

Under the hood, Fitbit have taken advantage of the new bigger screen to provide even more personal data.

There are more activity options for a tailored workout, and an auto-activity mode that kicks in when it recognises the exercise you are doing (that’s right, multi-sport functionality). Perfect for a quick start in the absence of a touchscreen.

The single side button offers even greater control when cycling through the multitude of activity options. Plus, the larger screen makes it possible to read texts and calendar apps. And there’s even a prompt to tell you to get up and get moving if you haven’t been active for a while.

Sadly there is no music control, as you would see in the Blaze. But even the auto-time function that actually allows you to see what time it is for a few seconds when you lift your wrist is a great added extra.

 

Put the HR in the Fitbit Charge 2

The continuous heart rate monitor ‘PurePulse’ is one of the highlights of the Fitbit Charge 2.

Working with the new Cardio Fitness Level app, it provides a real insight into how your body functions compare to others of your age and gender. And it even influences the new breathing app to ensure personalised relaxation.

When fed back into the work that the sleep sensor does, the Fitbit Charge 2 can provide a clear overview of your physical status.

All this functionality is starting to impact the battery life a little. The Charge 2 states it can achieve 5 days of service from one charge. But when you start using the GPS function and fiddling with the settings, the (new) low battering indicator is more likely to appear within about four days. But compare that to the one or two days from an Apple watch Series 1 and probably three days from the Samsung Gear Fit 2, and it is still pretty exceptional.

 

Watch the Connectivity

One thing I do question (apart from why on earth it isn’t waterproof) is the connectivity choices.

Data transfer to the app is quite slow – although you can forgive that when you consider how much data now needs to be transferred from such a small device.

And what about the GPS?

Instead of built-in GPS, the Fitbit Charge 2 needs your phone to track your route. Great as long as it you have a continuous data connection and don’t mind lugging your phone with you on every training session. But not so good when you don’t want the extra weight or you go off track where the data connection gets lost. On the plus side, that’s one less thing to drain the battery.

Cyclist? Take note. There’s no retro amendments to the Fitbit app, so you look like you’ve only cycled down the street even if you’ve been pushing the pedals for hours.

 

Do You Really Need To Buy One

For the first time Fitbit buyer, the Fitbit Charge 2 is a really good option. It’s basic and lightweight, with more functionality than the Alta, yet is far sleeker than the Blaze (if you can do without many smartwatch features).

Yes, you lose music control if you choose this option over the Blaze, but it sits a lot lighter on the wrist.

For original Fitbit HR owners, the upgrade is inevitable. Not only because your strap has probably worn out and you will have a heck of a time trying to find that little charger. But this model is sleeker, sexier, more dynamic and stylish enough to be worn anywhere.

But please Fitbit, can the next version be waterproof?

What’s in the Box

  • Fitbit Charge 2 Activity Tracker
  • Charge 2 Classic or Special Edition Wristband
  • Charge 2 Charging Cable

Fitbit Charge 2
With an all new look and 'smarter' designed band, the Fitbit Charge 2 offers more activity options for a tailored workout.
Design89%
Usability80%
Battery Life80%
Features88%
84%Overall Score
Reader Rating: (4 Votes)
27%