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Fitbit charge 2 vs Charge 3: Is an upgrade necessary?

The Fitbit Charge 3 has been around for a little over five months. It has put an end to the reign of the Fitbit Charge 2, which has been the device of choice from Fitbit Inc for over two years. But is it worth spending Shs570,000 on the new device or would you get similar utility from the Shs450,000 Charge 2.

Both devices are fitness trackers, which record a person’s daily physical activity. They also record health data such as heart rate, calories burnt and sleep information.

The Charge 3 follows a similar design philosophy as the older device with a rectangular screen and straps that take the same width as the short side of the screen. However the 3 is thinner and its screen size is 40 per cent larger making it easier to read.

The device display is gray scale, which is more appealing than the Charge 2, that is purely black and white. The device also sits better on the hand, because it has a thinner aluminum case, making it less obtrusive if you have to wear it with dress clothes to the office.

A big difference is that the new Fitbit is water resistant up to 50 metres, an improvement to the Charge 2, which is only splash proof. This new feature makes it possible to swim with the newer Fitbit. Swim tracking is a new feature, which records your data as you make laps in the swimming pool.

You also get a functional touch screen, an improvement to the older device, which needed tapping a button for navigation. But you will have to make do with a proprietary charger, which limits the charging options available. Also, although both devices use proprietary charges, they are not cross compatible, complicating things a little should you choose to move from the Charge 2 to the 3. Another bummer is that both trackers do not have GPS, but have connected GPS which relies on your phone for functionality.

Like with most new devices, battery life is better with the Charge 3, which has a runtime of seven days on a full charge. This is two days more than the five days that you will get from the Charge 2.

The new Charge has different modes for exercises such as cycling and running and also has a goal setting feature. This enables you to set goals such as the distance to cover or time for a workout.

Although both devices show notifications from your phone, the Charge 3 shows alerts from all apps on your phone and gives the option to reply. The Charge 2 is limited to alerts on your device. These devices are compatible with Android, IOS, and Windows devices.

If you are looking for a no frills fitness tracker and swimming is not something you particular about, the Charge 2 is still a decent tracker for today.
If you are keen on features like better battery life, waterproof ability, and newer health tracking abilities that the Charge 3 will unlock, after updates then the three makes a better purchase choice.

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