This morning Fitbit has announced its newest wearable, the Charge 3. Fitbit’s latest fitness tracker takes the previous generation design and adds an upgraded display, swim tracking and a handful of other new features. Its case and band look similar to the Charge 2, but Fitbit has actually made a number of changes to the casing. That includes a new Gorilla Glass 3 front and an aluminum body. More details below.
Much like last year, Fitbit is introducing its latest wearable just ahead of Apple’s expected unveiling of the next generation Apple Watch. Last year it was the $300 Ionic, which more directly competed in Apple Watch’s price range. This year’s refreshed Charge 3 starts at $150, which is designed to attract those not willing to spend in the higher price bracket.
Despite familiar visuals, the new Charge 3 arrives with a number of upgrades. That Gorilla Glass 3 display comes over from Fitbit’s Versa line. It also adds touchscreen functionality with a large active area and support for various grayscale colors.
Instead of a physical “home button”, Fitbit is rolling out a new inductive button. This technology is similar to what we’ve seen from Apple in recent years. It has that same bit of haptic feedback that iPhone users have become accustomed to when pressed.
The new aluminum casing has resulted in a water-resistant rating with coverage up to 50-meters. Swim tracking also arrives in conjunction with the upgraded design. Perhaps the biggest news from this morning’s announcement is that the Charge 3 is seeing a significant boost in battery life. The previous generation model topped off at five days, while today’s release sports up to 7-days of juice.
Much like Apple Watch, goal-based fitness tracking is playing a major role on the Charge 3. Specific calorie and distance markers can be set and tracked throughout the day. A feature that has been crucial in Apple’s ‘close your rings’ campaigns.
The new Charge 3 will ship with two different configurations. A base “Core Version” will sell for $150 while the upgraded $170 “Special Edition” delivers support for NFC payments. It’s available for pre-order today from Fitbit with Amazon expected to follow suit shortly.
Fitbit Launches Charge 3 – the Number One Fitness Tracker, Now Better Than Ever
SAN FRANCISCO–(BUSINESS WIRE)– Fitbit (NYSE: FIT), the leading global wearables brand, today announced Fitbit Charge 3
Fitbit’s Charge family of products is the most popular of Fitbit’s lineup, with 35 million devices sold to date. According to Fitbit research, of adult consumers who considered buying a wearable in the last year, 42% wanted a tracker versus 36% who wanted a smartwatch – due to the slimmer design, easy-to-use features, streamlined experience and price point.iii Further, IDC estimates shipments of fitness trackers will continue to comprise a significant portion of the overall wearables category for the next several years.iv Trackers also make up the majority of wearable sales in major global markets like Australia, Great Britain, Japan, Singapore and Spain.v
“With Charge 3, we are building on the success of our best-selling Charge franchise and delivering our most innovative tracker, offering an extremely slim, comfortable and premium design, along with the advanced health and fitness features our users want. Charge 3 gives existing users a compelling reason to upgrade, while also allowing us to reach new users who want a sleeker, more affordable wearable in a tracker form factor,” said James Park, co-founder and CEO of Fitbit. “Our commitment to consumer choice and ability to meet the demand of millions of users by offering a range of products, from trackers to smartwatches, will enable us to expand our share of the overall wearables market.”
Premium design, intelligently crafted
Charge 3 is crafted from premium, lightweight materials, including an aerospace grade aluminum case and Corning® Gorilla® Glass 3 display for a slimmer, modern silhouette, increased durability and more comfortable fit for men and women. It features a crisp, touchscreen OLED display that is nearly 40 percent larger and brighter than its predecessor, offering a more intuitive experience with easy access to your most important information.
Fitbit Charge 3 is the first wearable with an inductive button, which includes new patent-pending technology that provides a streamlined, swimproof design, increased space in the device to add more sensors plus a larger battery with up to 7 days of use, and more effortless interaction while maintaining the performance expected from our most advanced fitness tracker.
To complement the elevated hardware, the interactive software experience was redesigned to more deeply engage and motivate users to reach their goals each day. The high-resolution touchscreen display brilliantly showcases crisp, grayscale graphics with new playful animations and expressive graphics which surprise and delight, creating fun moments to help you celebrate milestones and stay focused on hitting your next goal.
Superior health & fitness experience
Charge 3 also delivers the most advanced health and fitness features found on a Fitbit tracker to date. With more than nine trillion minutes of heart rate data tracked,vi Fitbit has enhanced its 24/7 PurePulse® heart rate technology for even greater accuracy during exercise compared to Charge 2, and provides a better measure of calorie burn and resting heart rate to optimize workouts and help uncover health trends.vii The addition of a relative SpO2 sensor – a first for a Fitbit tracker – allows for the potential to estimate changes in blood oxygen levels and help track new health indicators, like sleep apnea.
Additional health and fitness features include:
- Goal-based exercise modes: Choose from 15+ exercise modes like bike, swim, run, weights and yoga; set a goal for calories burned, distance or duration, and see real-time stats, progress and celebrations on device when you reach your goal.
- Water resistant to 50M: Wear in the shower, rain, pool or ocean. See real-time duration on your wrist with Swim Mode, or use SmartTrack® automatic exercise recognition to see laps and pace in the Fitbit® app post-swim.
- Go the distance: Stay motivated with Connected GPS from your phone for real-time pace and distance on device, plus Run Detect with auto pause and auto stop (coming soon).
- Female health tracking: Gain a deeper understanding of your menstrual cycle by using the Fitbit app to log your period and ovulation (coming soon), record symptoms and compare cycle trends over time. With all your health and fitness stats in one place, you can better manage your health; easily see where you are in your cycle in the on-device dashboard.
- Information at a glance: Easily navigate the new personalized, on-device dashboard to see daily activity stats and health metrics like female health tracking; hydration, sleep and weight (coming soon).
- Personalized insights: Know yourself to improve your health with new dynamic insights about your activity, heart rate, nutrition and sleep to help you reach your goals with positive reinforcement and tips to course correct when needed (coming soon in the Fitbit app).
- Social motivation: Connect to one of the largest health and fitness social networks in the world, with more than 25 million active users for added motivation to reach your goals when you engage with friends, family and others through Feed, Groups and Challenges in the Fitbit app.viii
- 24/7 guidance and motivation: Stay on top of all your daily activity and get a more complete picture of your overall health with features like automatic exercise recognition, Reminders to Move, Relax guided breathing, sleep tracking with Sleep Stages and Sleep Insights, and more.
Advancements in Sleep Tracking & Analysis
Fitbit helps millions of users better understand their sleep patterns and the lifestyle habits than can impact them. Fitbit was the first wearable brand to offer sleep tracking and has built one of the largest databases of sleep over the past nine years with more than 7.5 billion nights tracked.ix Fitbit also introduced Sleep Stages and Sleep Insights based on heart rate variability to give you an even more in-depth understanding of sleep quality.
“Fitbit continues to harness its data to give users actionable insights into their health and wellness. For example, we’ve found that 1 in 4 people get significantly more sleep on weekends than weekdays, which implies they are trying to make up for reduced sleep during the week.x We can deliver insights to these users through the Fitbit app to make them aware of how this behavior affects their well-being and suggest how to set up a sleep schedule,” said Shelten Yuen, VP of Research at Fitbit. “In the future, we hope to provide more guidance to our users to reduce the risk of disease so they can become the healthiest versions of themselves.”
Fitbit continues to make advancements in sleep and is announcing a new Sleep Score beta from Fitbit Labs that will be available to Fitbit users later this year. Using key metrics tracked by any Fitbit device with advanced 24/7 PurePulse heart rate tracking, Sleep Score will provide a nightly score to help give you a more complete picture of your overall sleep quality and what factors affect it.
In addition, for devices with a relative SpO2 sensor, including Charge 3, Fitbit Ionic
“With the Fitbit Labs Sleep Score beta, we’re pioneering an intuitive way for people to understand their sleep. It’s an example of how we are continually evolving the health experience for our users,” Yuen added.
Separately, Fitbit will continue to develop and clinically validate FDA regulated software as a medical device for various health conditions including sleep apnea and atrial fibrillation. Fitbit is one of nine companies in the FDA’s digital health software precertification pilot program, which is designed to streamline the approval process for software as a medical device.
Stay connected with the right mix of smart features
Along with its advanced health and fitness features, Charge 3 is Fitbit’s smartest tracker yet, offering the best smart features to stay connected to what matters most without overwhelming you with technology or distractions you don’t want or need.
- Expanded smart features: Easily customize and view call, calendar, text and smartphone app notifications (like Facebook and Uber),xi plus accept or reject calls and respond on the go with pre-populated or custom quick replies for Android users (coming soon).xii
- Essential apps: Make the most of your day with top-requested convenient apps like Alarms, Timer and Weather; plus Calendar and Fitbit Leaderboard coming soon with future updates.
- Popular brand apps: A select number of popular brand apps will be added on device in the future, similar to those offered on Ionic and Versa.
- Easy and secure payments: Leave your wallet at home and use Charge 3 Special Edition devices to make easy and secure payments with Fitbit Pay
contactless payments; supported by more than 100 financial institutions in 18 countries.
- Broad compatibility: Compatible across most Android and iOS devices, with Windows coming soon,xiii so you can choose the wearable you want, regardless of your phone.xiv
Accessories, Pricing & Availability
Customize your Charge 3 day and night with a redesigned, easier-than-ever band attach and a range of accessory options. These feature premium materials like refined polygonal-textured and stain-resistant classic bands, breathable perforated silicone sports bands, fashionable woven bands and premium Horween hand-crafted leather bands. Charge 3 Special Edition with NFC features an exclusive, white silicone sports band with a graphite aluminum case or lavender woven band with a rose gold aluminum case, and offers two looks in one with the inclusion of an additional black classic accessory band in-box.
Charge 3 is available for presale today on Fitbit.com and select online retailers tomorrow for $149.95 USD in black with a graphite aluminum case or blue gray with a rose gold aluminum case; accessories range from $29.95-$49.95 USD. Coming soon, Fitbit Charge 3 Special Edition with Fitbit Pay will be available for $169.95 USD. Charge 3 will be available in stores in Americas and EMEA beginning October 2018 and in Asia Pacific starting November 2018. (See Table 1 for international product pricing.) North American retailers include Amazon, Best Buy, Kohl’s, Macy’s, Target, Verizon and Walmart.
Additional details about Charge 3 can be found here.
FTC: 9to5Toys is reader supported, we may earn income on affiliate links