Which fitness trackers won't run out of energy before you do?
You're one of those people who is always on the go and you want a fitness tracker that keeps going for as long as you do. You're in luck: most trackers on the market will last a standard work week between charges, and a few last longer than that.
Before we delve into the longest lasting trackers, let's take a look at what makes them go. Many fitness trackers, like most other personal electronics, use lithium polymer rechargeable batteries.
Lithium-ion or lithium polymer - what's the difference?
Lithium polymer (LiPo) is just another name for a lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery packed into a thin, flexible casing.
There are two advantages to LiPo batteries: the first is that they are super thin while including more energy cells per battery. This means that LiPo batteries can last a lot longer between charges. The second advantage is that LiPo batteries can be made in almost any shape, which is great for mobile technology because it lets manufacturers power just about anything they can dream up.
Apparently, there is a true lithium polymer battery that uses a polymer as an electrolyte, but it never went anywhere because it could not run well at room temperature.
Now that you know what powers most fitness trackers out there, let's talk about which ones keep going and going, like the Energizer bunny.
Fitbit's Charge has the longest battery life of all of its wristband fitness trackers - its LiPo battery lasts 7 to 10 days between charges. Since most other fitness trackers last roughly five days between charges, that's pretty impressive.
The Charge comes with a USB charging cable that connects it to the USB ports on any computer. It takes about two hours to charge completely.
Garmin's Vivofit 2 can go for over a year without needing a charge. Unlike either the Charge or the UP2, it uses two replaceable watch batteries instead of a rechargeable one. The advantage is that you can wear it all the time without worrying about having to recharge it. However, when the batteries do die, they're dead, dead, dead-sky, in the words of the immortal Beetlejuice.
Jawbone's UP2 can last 10 days between charges, eeking out a bit more than the Charge's 7 to 10 day maximum. Part of the reason for this is likely due to the fact that the UP2 doesn't have a display, while the Charge does. It's also shiny. Shiny and pretty!
Like the Charge, the UP2 comes with a USB charging cable that connects to any computer. Its LiPo battery takes about an hour to become fully charged.
Don't stop till the sun comes up
Whether you go for a Charge, Vivofit 2, or an UP2, these devices are built to last a long time without you having to worry about charging or replacing the batteries. Since you want your fitness tracker to have as little downtime as possible in recording your fitness goals, that's a good thing, right?