Wearable Fitness Devices – Some pros & cons

So wearable fitness tracking devices are getting more and more popular and more companies are throwing their hats in the game, but as of now there are still just 3 main competitors: Fitbit, Jawbone, and Nike. I’ve been crazy enough to purchase and use them all for 6 months or more and just wanted to list my pros and cons.


They were around before this category blew up. So lets start with them.


Device Options: In my opinion the biggest pro is the device options they offer. They have 3 devices, , One, Flex. I have used the Zip and it is very freeing after using a wrist option for a year, to not have something on your wrist so you don’t have to be concerned that your not getting your steps when you carrying something in your arms.

The App: The app is definitely the most rounded of them they’ve been around the longest and in that time they’ve built in more features to their app.


Syncing: I don’t know if it is something they did or something Apple changed, but the bluetooth syncing is awful! It’s sad when I can take off the Jawbone UP and plug it into my phone faster then I can get my phone to even see that the fitbit is ready to sync.

The App: The app looks old. Hopefully with iOS 7 coming we will see a redesign soon.

Rant: My biggest pet peeves is I can’t modify my water intake goal. Why Fitbit, WHY!

Jawbone UP

As far as I know they made the first tracking device for the wrist, if they didn’t they at least made it popular. They had a ton of issues with their first version, but they went back and made it great.


Vibration Alerts: Love this feature, you can set the device to vibrate if you have been idle for so many minutes. Just to remind you to get up and move around. Definitely helps you when it comes to starting out and hitting your goals.

Sleep tracking: Fitbit also offers sleep tracking, but I haven’t had a chance to try it out since I just have the Zip, but the tracking on the UP is great it gives you all the data you need and the vibrate to wake up is a great feature to help you wake up easier.

The App: Out of all of them the others I like this app the best. They took the time to make it beautiful and functional.


The Band: It doesn’t clasps. So it can easily be pulled off by a Baby/Toddler.

Syncing: Out of the 3 companies the one that is known for their bluetooth devices is the only one that requires you to plug the device in… huh?

Nike Fuelband

What else can you say about Nike. Their Nike!


The Band: It feels great on your wrist it’s secure and it can tell you the time. I know that seems stupid, but since it is already on your wrist it’s much easier then pulling your phone out of your pocket.


Fuel Points: They make no sense and they don’t put you on an even playing ground, maybe its become of my next con below, but me and my wife could start out on a walk and she would earn way more points then I would doing the exact same activity.

Accuracy: Out of the 3 this one is the worst. Step count is off by 1000s and not 100s. I know it’s on my wrist, but if I can gain more Fuel Points on my 30 min drive to work then I can on an hour of the treadmill something is just wrong.

App Size: It’s huge! 152MBs to be exact, really Nike just get rid of those stupid videos in the app they get annoying after the first or second time anyways.

And the winner is…

Honestly, I have no clue. I am currently wearing both the UP and the Fitbit Zip. I sold my Nike Fuelband, even though I like the hardware the best I am in it to be more active and inaccurate data just doesn’t motivate me. I love the accuracy of the Zip, its not on my wrist so it is always counting my steps, but I also love the vibration alerts of the Jawbone (which the Fitbit Flex doesn’t have, it just does a sleep alarm”>Zip. So for now I wear both.

[]: http://www.fitbit.com/flex

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