Best Fitbit alternatives iMore 2021
The market is saturated with tons of fitness trackers and smartwatches, but what are the best Fitbit alternatives? If you're looking for a device that offers it all when it comes to cutting-edge technology, abundant features, and comprehensive health and fitness tracking, our favorite is Apple Watch Series 6. It's jam-packed with all of the features you could ever want and some you never knew you needed. If you're in the market for a new fitness wearable, this is our list of best Fitbit alternatives.
- Best overall: The Apple Watch Series 6
- Best runner up: The Garmin Vivoactive 4S
- Best everyday: The Apple Watch SE
- Best value: The Coros Pace 2
- Best budget: The Withings Move
- Best look: The Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2
Best overall: The Apple Watch Series 6
The Apple Watch Series 6 truly is in a class of its own regarding comprehensive health and wellness tracking. No matter how you like to move, Apple Watch Series 6 is very capable of tracking your workouts. Choose from running, swimming, yoga, cycling, dance, or just about anything else you're into. Activity Rings will help you stay motivated to sit less, move more, and get some exercise every day. For more precise metrics, the new always-on altimeter continuously tracks your elevation changes in real-time — indoors and out; and it keeps close tabs on your altitude.
What makes Apple Watch Series 6 so great is all the features it's packed with. The sensor and app on the watch allow you to take on-demand and background readings of your blood oxygen, a key indicator of your overall wellness. The Sleep app helps you establish a regular bedtime routine and keeps track of your sleep trends every night.
Apple Watch Series 6 also offers the most color and customization options out of most watches on the market. You can choose from a range of casing materials, including titanium, stainless steel, and recycled aluminum. Bands come in multiple material and color options as well. You can choose from the most watch faces ever; customize them to match your mood, style, or favorite activity. The options are endless with Apple Watch 6 — you can make it uniquely your own.
Apple Watch 6 is equipped with a U1 chip, Apple Watch's fastest processor yet. It is 20% faster than Apple Watch Series 5. It also offers improved battery life. It gives one additional hour of audio playback and an additional hour of workout tracking over its predecessor. Apple Watch Series 6 is the best smartwatch available on the market today. It's pricey but well worth it.
- Advanced Sp02 monitoring
- Sleep tracking
- Improved battery life
- Always-on altimeter
- Tons of colors and customization options
- U1 chip
Best runner up: The Garmin Vivoactive 4S
Garmin Vivoactive 4S features a slightly smaller watch face than its big brother, the Garmin Vivoactive 4, but it still features comprehensive health and fitness tracking, on-screen workouts, and music streaming. This smartwatch offers Body Battery energy monitoring. You can see your body's energy levels throughout the day so you can find the best times for activity and rest. It's equipped with a Pulse 0x sensor that gauges your blood oxygen levels to show how well your body absorbs oxygen.
It also has stress tracking to give insight towards better mental health. It will send you relaxation reminders and will even prompt you to do a short breathing activity if it senses you're stressed out. It offers all-day activity and advanced sleep tracking. You'll get a full picture of how you're sleeping, with a breakdown of your light, deep and REM sleep stages, as well as Pulse 0x and respiration data.
The Vivoactive 4S comes with 20 preloaded GPS and indoor workout modes, including walking, running, cycling, pool swimming, golf, and more! It also offers easy-to-follow, animated, on-screen cardio, strength, yoga, and Pilates workouts, which help with form and injury prevention. On the downside, the screen is difficult to read indoors, and the battery life is less than expected.
- Body Battery energy monitoring
- Pulse 0x monitoring
- All-day activity and stress tracking
- Advanced sleep tracking
- 20 preloaded workout modes
- On-screen workouts
- Battery life less than expected
- Display can be difficult to read
Best every day: The Apple Watch SE
Apple Watch SE is an excellent smartwatch and a great option for those who want an Apple Watch but don't want to pay the price. Apple Watch SE offers comprehensive activity, health and sleep tracking, fall detection and emergency SOS, noise monitoring, an always-on altimeter, compass, and all-day battery life.
Advanced sensors track the way you move. It offers dozens of workout profiles, including running, walking, yoga, cycling, HIIT, and dance. It also pairs with compatible fitness equipment, so you can keep tabs on your stats at the gym or wherever you're working out. Activity rings show all the ways you move throughout the day using three simple metrics: move, exercise, stand. You'll stay motivated in fitness with friendly competitions, personalized coaching, ad awards.
You can listen to your favorite music, podcasts, and audiobooks with Apple Music, and it will connect seamlessly with all of your Apple products. It comes in multiple colors and band materials, so you can make it completely your own. It offers up to 18 hours of battery life. On the downside, it doesn't have an always-on display or ECG and Sp02 monitoring apps.
- Cheaper Apple Watch
- Comprehensive health and fitness tracking
- Fall detection and emergency SOS
- Noise monitoring and always-on altimeter
- All-day battery life
- No always-on display
- No ECG or Sp02 apps
Best value: The Coros Pace 2
Coros Pace 2 is the lightest GPS sports watch available on the market today. It weighs a mere 29 grams and is outfitted with a high-quality, quick-drying, comfortable nylon band that's perfect for everyday wear. The Pace 2 offers 30 hours of full GPS battery life, a 20% increase from its predecessor. If you need your battery to last even longer, switch to UltraMax for nearly half the battery consumption. If you don't use GPS mode a lot, Coros Pace 2 delivers up to 20 days of activity and sleep tracking.
The Pace 2 also has 14 preloaded sport modes. It tracks running, biking, swimming, strength, and more! If you wear your watch to bed, Coros Pace 2 will keep track of your sleep cycles, duration of sleep, the time you spend awake, your heart rate range, and your average heart rate. You can set bedtimes, wake-up times, and alarms so you can ensure that you're waking up refreshed and ready to conquer the day.
Pace 2 is outfitted with 24/7 heart rate, an always-on altimeter, and a thermometer so you can keep close watch over your health and wellness. It also features an easy-to-use app. However, it does not have a touchscreen; it has two buttons and a dial for scrolling. Also, you cannot store, stream, or play music.
- Great battery life
- Lightweight and comfortable to wear
- Built-in GPS
- All-day activity + sleep tracking
- 24/7 heart rate, altimeter, and thermometer
- Easy to use app
- No touchscreen
- Can't play music
- Not a lot of replacement bands available
Best budget: The Withings Move
The Withings Move brings that retro, classic watch appeal at a very affordable price. It comes in four different colors: black, blue, pink, and green, so you can pick the one that matches your vibe best. It features seamless synchronization, so you can visualize trends and see all of your data on your smartphone with the Health mate app.
It offers all-day activity tracking and comes with 10 preloaded workout modes. You can also track your ZZZ's with the Move's sleep tracking. Wake up to a Sleep Score based on your light and deep sleep cycles, interruptions, depth, and regularity. You can set a Smart Wake-UP time for yourself so you can wake feeling refreshed and ready for the day.
The Move delivers up to 18 months of battery life. Yup, that's right — 18 months! It's water-resistant up to 50 meters, so you can rock it in the shower, tub, or pool. On the downside, it does not have a heart rate monitor or built-in GPS, and the plastic casing scuffs and scratches easily.
- Classic, retro design
- All-day activity and sleep tracking
- Auto synchronization
- 18-month battery life
- No heart rate monitoring
- Plastic casing easily scuffs
- Connected GPS only
Best look: The Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2
The Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 boasts a sleek and stylish design. It comes in aluminum or stainless steel casing, and there are multiple watch faces and bands to choose from, so you can really make it your own.
This watch features 24/7 heart rate monitoring and will send you high or low heart rate alerts if necessary. Samsung Galaxy Active 2 offers all-day activity tracking, so you can keep close tabs on your health and fitness. It's outfitted with sleep tracking, so you can get valuable insights on how you can ultimately get better rest. It also monitors stress levels and helps reduce anxiety with the newly integrated Calm app.
Galaxy Watch Active 2 delivers up to five days of battery life on a single charge and features Bluetooth connectivity. It comes with the Spotify app, so you can play and stream music with your watch. Take note that some users complain that the calorie count, GPS biking, and running tracking are off. Some also feel the screen is difficult to see outdoors.
- Sleek and stylish
- 24/7 heart rate + high and low HR alerts
- All-day activity and sleep tracking
- Up to five days of battery life
- Bluetooth connectivity
- Spotify streaming
- Calorie counts can be off
- Screen is hard to see outdoors
- GPS run/bike tracking not as accurate as phone
Fitbit is a great and reputable brand, but we understand wanting to explore the alternatives. Some of these products are smartwatches, and some are fitness trackers, but bottom line: they're the best of the best. They're outfitted with all of the comprehensive fitness tracking, health monitoring, and high-tech features that you could want in a fitness wearable.
The Apple Watch Series 6 takes the cake as our best overall because it's truly in a class of its own. It features advanced Sp02 monitoring, advanced sleep-tracking, improved battery life, an always-on altimeter, lots of customization options, and Apple Watch's fastest processor yet. Plus, it's got that integrated cellular system so you can make calls and send texts from anywhere with just your watch — no phone required! No matter your budget or needs, you'll find the perfect wearable on this list of best Fitbit alternatives.
Credits — The team that worked on this guide
Nicolette Roux is a master fitness instructor and health coach from Los Angeles. She has worked with some of the top names and brands in the biz and enjoys researching and writing about the best smartwatches and fitness trackers.
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