Fitbit motivational feature to take users on virtual hikes

30 August 2016, 03:25 | Myrtle Hill

Fitbit motivational feature to take users on virtual hikes

Fitbit motivational feature to take users on virtual hikes

There's no built-in Global Positioning System, but you can connect your phone to help capture routes and calculate lap splits.

The Flex 2 comes with several colors of bands, with Luxe pendants and bracelets sold separately. The updated wearables will quickly replace their predecessors in Fitbit's store, though the pricing will remain the same. We spent some time with the new tracker running on beta software ahead of its release.

So, strap on your new Fitbit and you can act like you're in Yosemite today. To cycle through all of the top-level menu options, you press a single physical button.

The bands for the new device will be interchangeable, and this allows users to customize their device for various occasions. The bands come in three sizes: Small (for wrists 5.5 to 6.5 inches in circumference), Large (6.5 to 7.7 inches), and XL (7.7 to 8.9 inches). To help you create a timeless, upscale look, you'll find premium bands made from genuine leather, available in blush pink, brown, and indigo. A simple push-slide mechanism pops the display module right off the band. "That's why Charge 2 has 4X the screen size", Jaime Hardley, Fitbit's senior regional marketing director, Asia-Pacific tells Gadgets 360.

For those looking to pay less than $100 for a fitness tracker, the Flex 2 is unmatched.

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"Charge HR users are the more active". There's photography of various landmarks - you can move the phone around to view them - and, periodically, "hidden treasures" like quizzes, mini-challenges, and information about the area. As sales for the wearables market grow, Fitbit stands to be a prime beneficiary going forward.

The Charge 2 is resistant to rain, sweat, and splashes. Its expected battery life is around five days. The goal was to simplify the operations while providing more guidance to the user, Fitbit executives said. It can track pool swims including laps, duration, and calories burned. There are now seven built-in clock faces ranging from analog through to digital, with different degrees of health info shown on them. The company is also planning to ship out another cheaper variant along with the Apple Watch; we can not confirm nor deny that yet. And you get bar charts of your fat burn, cardio and peak heart rate zones.

You can now get a snapshot of your Cardio Fitness Level. The Charge 2 has multiple sports modes, and it includes tracking for activities such as yoga, aerobic workouts, and weight lifting. When each time is up, the band vibrates to alert you to move to the next phase of the workout. New to Fitbit are the Charge 2's guided breathing sessions, which use heart rate to give breathing prompts for relaxation. The Fitbit Blaze does most those things, but in color. The Surge has built-in Global Positioning System, but it's chunky and expensive; the Blaze also has connected Global Positioning System through the phone, but it's a watch form factor. Blaze and Alta devices will also be available in gold. Owners will be able to opt for a two or five minute session, in which they inhale and exhale in conjunction with a guide displayed on the wristband screen.

The heart tracking has been carried over from the Charge HR, along with with additional fitness metrics, like VO2 Max (or an estimate thereof), a comprehensive workout stat traditionally the realm of high end laboratory testing. You can also see how your score compares to those of the same age and sex. And the band automatically tracks your sleep. The Charge 2 is the same price as the Charge HR at $149. Charge 2 and Flex 2 are available for presale on and at major North American retailers online, including, Best Buy, Brookstone, Dick's Sporting Goods, Nordstrom, REI, Target and Verizon.

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