At this point, if you haven't heard of Fitbit, you must be living under a rock. It's line of fitness trackers has grown over the last few years to include upgrades and even smartwatches. Garmin, on the other hand, might conjure up thoughts of GPS devices over fitness trackers, but its vivofit 4 is an great tracker.
Let's take a look at how the Fitbit Charge 2 and vivofit 4 stack up in a head-to-head comparison, so you can pick the tracker that's right for you.
- Feature comparison
- Garmin vivosport's best features
- Fitbit Charge 2's best features
- Which is best for you?
Let's get to the dollar signs first. The Fitbit Charge 2 is typically around $150; however, recently it's been on sale for about a $120.
The Garmin vivofit 4 is cheaper than Fitbit, coming in at about $99.
How do their feature sets compare?
In terms of what they track and feature sets, the Charge 2 and vivofit are really neck and neck.
Here's a breakdown of what you'll get with each:
|Features||Garmin vivofit 4||Fitbit Charge 2|
|Calories burned tracking||✓||✓|
|Heart rate monitor||✓||✓|
|Call and text notifications||✓||✓|
|Automatic exercise detection||✓||✓|
|Battery life||Up to 1 Year, replaceable||Up to 5 days, rechargeable|
Garmin vivofit 4's best features
Just keep swimming
The vivofit is swimproof. You can get into a swimproof Fitbit for less (Flex 2, $60 (opens in new tab), but to get similar features overall, you'd need to grab the Fitbit Versa ($200) (opens in new tab).
To put it bluntly, The Garmin vivofit 4's best feature is value.
Okay, hear me out. Everything has a charging cable these days, and its gotten to the point where some days I can't charge all my devices whne I need to, there just isn't enough ports in my home. Plus, without having to charge the Garmin vivofit 4, you'll never miss tracking anything! Often, I have to charge my Fitbit at night and I miss tracking my sleep, or worse it dies in the middle of the day right before I'm about to hit the gym! Yikes!
I know you are yelling at the screen right now, "What about the cost of batteries every year!". Well, if you look for SR43 batteries on Amazon (opens in new tab) you can get them for cheaper than a dollar per battery.
Fitbit Charge 2's best features
The Fitbit ecosystem
A connected scale (opens in new tab), wireless earbuds (opens in new tab), and accessories for days (opens in new tab), Fitbit has the market on customizable fitness trackers. You can track your weight loss journey and all of your fitness metrics all in one app thanks to Fitbit. You also have Fitbit's support site, which has excellent moderators and Fitbit ambassadors waiting to answer your questions.
Fitbit is what most people go with
The simple fact is that Fitbit has brand recognition, which means you'll have more friends to connect with in Fitbit's app, there are more training resources coming out all the time from Fitbit, and more companies are making inexpensive, third-party accessories to help you make your Fitbit your own.
Which is best for you?
At the end of the day, you should base your decision on which you like more. They're two of the best fitness trackers money can buy, and being so closely priced (sometimes identically so) means you get to go one which features matter most to you, and hell even which one looks best on your wrist.
The Garmin vivofit 4 is bets for people who want a basic fitness tracker that doesn't break the bank. For the $99 price tag, the Garmin vivofit 4 is very reasonable considering all the functionality that's packed into the device. Plus, the vivofit 4 is swimproof, which you can't really get in a Fitbit for under a couple hundred dollars. Ultimately, the vivofit 4 is all about value and very accurate tracking.
The Fitbit Charge 2 is for anyone who wants a tried and true brand, with a solid host of great features, and an ecosystem you can sink your teeth into. At $150, there are a few colors to choose from, tons of bands to change out, and a plethora of third-party options to help fit your style. It may not boast built-in GPS or swimproofing, but if you don't need it, then why have it?
Not sure how the Charge 2 will fit your wrist?
Which tracker do you choose?
Are you all-in for Fitbit or is Garmin more your speed? Let me know in the comments below!
Luke Filipowicz has been a writer at iMore, covering Apple for nearly a decade now. He writes a lot about Apple Watch and iPad but covers the iPhone and Mac as well. He often describes himself as an "Apple user on a budget" and firmly believes that great technology can be affordable if you know where to look. Luke also heads up the iMore Show — a weekly podcast focusing on Apple news, rumors, and products but likes to have some fun along the way.
Luke knows he spends more time on Twitter than he probably should, so feel free to follow him or give him a shout on social media @LukeFilipowicz.
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