Fitbit Alta HR Review: Is It Worth Buying?

Fitbit released its slimmest tracker model: the Alta HR. Still one of the most preferred models in their lineup, the Alta HR packs a lot of punch into its sleek design. Read on the following Fitbit Alta HR review to know more about this fitness tracker.

Fitbit Alta HR Review

1. Price

Despite its simplistic look and modest array of sensors, the Fitbit Alta HR isn’t the most affordable of devices. Available at launch for $149.95 (£129.99, AU$249.95) we’ve now seen the price drop as low as $140 (£120, AU$230) from some retailers but it hasn’t budged much more.

2. Design

Fitbit Alta HR review: design


The Alta HR’s design is pretty standard for an activity tracker: There’s a stainless steel sensor attached to durable, sweat-resistant straps (which can be easily swapped out for different colored rubber bands or leather and metal options to make it more stylish when you’re not at the gym). It’s only slightly bigger than the Flex 2, Fitbit’s most basic tracker, but it manages to add on an OLED (organic light-emitting diode) display and an accurate heart rate tracker without packing on much extra heft; the whole thing weighs in at less than 2 ounces more than the Flex 2, a barely noticeable difference.

The device does not have a touchscreen like your typical smartwatch, but the display does light up in response to a firm tap; additional taps allow you to cycle through the rest of your daily stats, including steps taken, distance covered, calories burned, and, of course, current heart rate.

The Alta HR blurs the lines between activity tracker and smartwatch by delivering a wealth of smart data from a still barely-there package.

Additionally, the screen will display notifications for incoming calls, text messages, and calendar alerts. It also provides helpful reminders when it’s time to move throughout the day, as well as encouragement when you’ve hit any of your daily goals. The only problem? It’s practically impossible to see the screen in the sunlight, making it difficult to check out your stats or read your messages on the go.

3. Fitness tracking

fitness tracking


Fitbit’s decision to add a heart rate sensor to its entry-level wearable makes a lot of sense, though. Where the standard Alta has to rely purely on how many steps you’ve taken to calculate your calories burned, the Alta HR can also monitor your heart rate to ascertain how hard you’re working. It also allows the Fitbit app to monitor your resting heart rate, which is both a useful indicator of general fitness and whether you’re pushing yourself too hard.

The Alta HR’s sleep-tracking has also improved drastically. In addition to monitoring how long you spend in light, deep and awake states, the app now details how much REM (rapid eye movement) sleep you’re getting and displays the whole lot in a snazzy new graph.

In fact, the app remains one of the best things about Fitbit’s family of products. The app’s tile-based display is super simple and makes it easy to find the data you want to know about your workouts. The ability to connect with friends adds a welcome bit of competition, and you can also sync your data with MyFitnessPal, Strava, Runkeeper, MapMyRun, and Endomondo. Alexa integration is included, as well, and the app is also compatible with more weird and wonderful fitness gadgets, such as the Thermos Hydration app, which makes sure you’re drinking enough water.

Crucially, Fitbit has ensured that the Alta HR tracks pretty much everything the average person could ask for. The heart-rate tracking and improved sleep analysis are a nice bonus, but you still get all the basics such as your total number of steps, distance walked, calories burned, and how many minutes you’ve been “active”.

There are a few smartwatch-style features, too, with the screen displaying incoming calls and SMS or WhatsApp messages, in addition to upcoming calendar entries.

The best thing about the Fitbit way of doing things, though, is the automatic activity detection: spend more than ten minutes working out, and the Alta HR records the activity as running, walking, or whatever you happen to be doing at any time, without any intervention required by the user.

4. Battery life

Fitbit Alta HR review: battery life


Given its size, the Alta HR’s battery life is decent. No, it’s not going to last a month between trips to the mains as you’d ideally want, but we managed just short of a week before getting nervous about our dwindling power supply and making an emergency trip to the mains.

When you do have to power up, you’ll have to fish out yet another proprietary charger, with this one clipping around the device. What’s more annoying than this slightly fiddly cradle design, however, is how short the power cable is.

In conclusion, this is the Fitbit Alta HR review. Hoping that you will find necessary information for your choice.


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