General

Fitbit Surge Review: Best Buy for Fitness Enthusiasts

General
Fitbit Surge
THE GOOD

The Fitbit Surge fitness tracker offers and always-on display,

Vibration for Alarm

Automatic sleep tracker,

Continuous heart rate and GPS tracker.

THE BAD

Fitbit is big and bulky.

Cannot be used while swimming or showering

Heart rate monitor’s accuracy in doubt during workouts

Lacks feedback and coaching features

Short battery life and notifications only limited to ted and calls

BOOTOM LINE

Continuous heart rate monitoring is a plus for the Surge

However, the smart features are inadequate while the fitness side of the Fitbit Surge is quite basic for such a price

BEST FEATURES

The Fitbit Surge is a fitness tracker that offer a torrent of new features which gives it the name “SuperWatch. This Fitness tracker comes with an in-built GPS, a heart rate monitor, and real time workout data.

Fitbit Surge main features include:

All day activity tracker – steps counter, calories burned, stairs climbed, and activity minutes

GPS Tracking – distance covered, pace, elevations, review running routes, and split times

PurePulse Heart Rate monitor– continuous monitoring, wrist based heart rate tracker, easy to understand hear rate zones

Multi sports tracker running sessions, cycling, and extra multi-sport modes

Long battery life – about 7 days of battery life and up to 10 hours of GPS

Smartphone notifications and music – see incoming calls and text. Control you mobile phone’s playlist

Auto sleep and alarm – monitors your sleep automatically and comes with a silent alarm

Wireless Sync – sync your workout stats wirelessly and automatically to your smartphone and PC.

The Fitbit Surge

The market has no shortage of fitness gadgets. Fitbit Surge is one of the best and trending fitness trackers that offer a wide range of new features. Fitbit Surge is an innovation by a start-up company, which refers to the device as a “SuperWatch” comparable only to the Fitbit Charge and the Fitbit Charge HR.

As you will soon find out, there are good reasons to label this fitness device a superwatch. To begin with, the watch comes with an inbuilt GPS, heart rate monitor, real time workout data, and a whole lot of other features, which probably raise the price as well.

At a glance, Fitbit Surge is an upgraded version of the Fitbit Force, a fitness watch that was infamous for causing allergies. In fact, Fitbit Force was forced out of the market before it could deliver on its smartwatch functionality promise. At a cost of $250, you will have your Fitbit Surge that boldly reclaims its lost glory with better performance than most high priced fitness trackers available in the market today.

Fitbit Surge gains its reputable and undisputed place in the market from its specs, which makes it the most powerful fitness tracker that is ahead of the highly stepped up competition in the fitness industry. To help you understand how the fitness tracker stays ahead in the competition, discussed below are its main specs.

Design and display

The first thing that draws buyers to this fitness tracker is its design. Unlike most competing devices, the Fitbit Surge is certainly designed for performance during workouts, with a noticeably large LCD display coupled with its ability to easily cycle through several stats simultaneously. You can now say goodbye to the single line OLED.

The backlit always present on the interface makes it easy for users to monitor their steps, miles covered, time taken, and their heart rate all on the black and white 1.25-inch LCD screen. With an upgraded touch screen, you are presented with just three physical control buttons. With these buttons, you can easily control key features such as the workout timer, GPS, and even the music player.

Most critics hate the fact that the display is not in color and that it fails to fit much information regarding your workouts on just a single screen. Furthermore, it would be great if the superwatch could allow users to cycle back the current time and information at a later date and come with extra faces other than its four preinstalled watch faces which would make it more relevant. A simple update could provide these fixes.

Underneath the watchband, you will find an optical heart rate monitor tucked. In addition, at the end of its straps, you will find a firm wristwatch clasp that is relatively easy to fasten. This is unlike with the Fitbit’s common two prolonged design, which as most people will attest to, is easy to lose. However, with the new clasp design, Fitbit seems to take note of their customer’s concerns.

Without a doubt, Fitbit Surge offers highly advanced functionalities. This is despite having a square and bigger design, similar to an ’80s digital watch. The design is not quite fashionable, although it stands out better than the previous Fitbit Versions. Another drawback with the new Fitbit Surge is the fact that it only comes in black. Fortunately, the company behind the fitness tracker promises blue and tangerine colored version to be in the market “soon.”

The thickest part of the Fitbit Surge case has a thickness of about half an inch with the wrist straps measuring an inch wide. Compared to the Fitbit charger HR, the bands are about 1.5 times wider which makes them quite hard to hide. The large lugs with a rubber coating found at the top and bottom of the watch makes it hard for users tuck it into their shirtsleeves.

Fitbit Metrics

fitbit-surge

Fitbit Surges boast of its eight sensors perfectly crammed into its frame, which, coupled with the LCD touch screens, contributes to the fitness tracker’s extra size. The sensors ensure that the device easily records all movements, which is beyond a regular fitness gadget’s routine recording of steps, distance covered, as well as the calories burned.

One of the sensors inbuilt in the superwatch is an altimeter. The altimeter is also by far one of the unique features on the watch. It serves as a monitor of the floors you climb in a single day. This is a feature not provided by other Fitbits including Fitbit Flex.

Another key sensor on the superwatch is the GPS. This is a new addition to the Fitbit family. The GPS sensor maps your runs with the help of the Google Maps while at the same time generating graphs for elevations covered, pace, calories burned as well as the heart rate. However, there are critics who argue that the Fitbit Surge GPS is not among the best there is in the industry, especially around corners and in other instances of tracking running routes that are at times a street over. However, these GPS errors and few, which takes us to another argument that the step count usually inflates the results. Accuracy is a key feature to look out for when purchasing any fitness tracker. The step count system needs to stay constant to make sure you reach your goals. The GPS can be initiated using your phone instead of setting it up on the small touch screen of the watch.

Fitbit Surge also provides satellite tracking without necessitating a phone. In fact, you can leave your phone at home and enjoy the new satellite-tracking feature that is not even available in the Apple Watch.

The superwatch also provides a list of exercises, which includes weights, spinning, yoga, elliptical, stair climber, boot camp, tennis golf, circuit training, kickboxing, and even martial arts. According to a post by the startup company, users can soon expect a bike-tracking feature on the list. The new application will also offer multi-tracker support, enabling you to wear the number of Fitbit you are comfortable with. The app also provides a menu to help you with the food planning, although to some extent, it is quite cumbersome and complicated to use.

The data collected by the watch are then synced to the app and an easier to read web interface. As the ultimate runners watch, the Fitbit Surge fairly standout as far as designed is concerned. Coming from the Apple’s direction, the designed included a stylish wrist piece.

The Heart Rate Monitor

The heart rate monitor is a vital part of your running and workout session. Coupled with an effective GPS, Fitbit Surge’s heart tracker keeps your heartbeat in check looking out for what the company refers to as the “purePulse.” The optical heart rate monitor is fixed to the underside of the Fitbit Surge and reflects green Light from the LED’s off your skin while calculating changes in the blood volume throughout the run. However, the surge does not come with a BPM indicator on the screen. In spite of this exception, the heart rate monitor is more effective that what do other fitness trackers, which force users to pause and calculate their current heart rate, offer.

The heart rate monitor is designed to constantly measure beats per minute with a great deal of accuracy, unless when engaged in extreme actives. The heart rate does a great job with the most needed resting heart rate. Your heart rate data is always present on the LCD screen and you no longer have to stop and read the data.

Sleep tracking

Fitbit Surge

When this feature is working, it proves to be an effective bonus that is as useful as any wide-awake health monitor. However, this feature does not seem to work on most fitness trackers such as Jawbone UP24. The feature keeps track of the wake, light sleep, and deep sleep data. Unfortunately, most users either forget to set it to sleep mode or wake it in the morning. To fix this problem, Fitbit Surge offers automatic sleep detection capability, ensuring that stats are recorded within minutes of the user dozing off.

This means that you no longer have to set it into sleep mode by long pressing a button, which is a bit awkward. However, even with the new feature, you are still required to set a convenient wake up alarm that is usually on vibrate mode ensuring you do not wake any other person sleeping next to you. Fitbit displays sleep timeline is different colors. For instance, asleep in blue, restless aqua, and awake in pink. While there is certainly need to upgrade this system, it does a good job in helping you monitor your sleeping patterns and observe how they affect your performance.

Smartwatch Features

Fitbit Surge comes with a wide range of smartwatch capabilities. To begin with, it displays caller ID for incoming call, while text messages can easily be read on the square display screen. The watch also allows you to control music on your phone with just a few swipes on the screen. For instance, by double tapping on the left button, you will be able to access a hidden menu that allows you to interact with the music files on your phone. Music playback requires you to enable the Bluetooth classic, which tends to drain the battery quite fast but very effectively. The phone does not allow you to store music on it. This SuperWatch is big and therefore does not need internal storage, which would make it even bigger.

Running with Fitbit Surge

The tracking system has been included in the surge, alongside the GPS and heart rate tracking systems, giving you a clear overview of your performance on the track. At a glance, the super watch appeals to men as a fashion item instead of a workout and fitness tracker, which is not a bad thing. The straps used in the watch are the traditional ones with a buckle that allows you to get enough play for the Heart rate monitor founder on the underside of the watch while ensuring that the watch stays in place.

The large LCD touchscreen makes looking at the stats during the run easy. The rounded contour of its back provide a comfortable feel, making it easy for runners to use the watch during long running sessions. The quick start control button means that you no longer have to stand on the pavements to locate the GPS icon.

The ease of control is another key reason why Fitbit Surge is fast becoming the favorite running gear for most people. Straight from the packaging box, the Surge will surprise you with the ease and speed of setup. You are simply required to charge the new Surge, slap on the wrist, the hit in the run option located on the menu, where you have to confirm whether you are taking a free or treadmill run and you are good to go.

The GPS responds quite fast. It is designed to get you locked a few seconds after hitting the road even in crowded placed. For alerts, the phone has a vibrate feature which is quite awesome and you are bound to like it. The vibrate alert you to pause, start and even a successful GPS lock. If you are looking for other sports to track, there are numerous options to tap, including, yoga, hiking, weights, among many more.

As every seasoned athlete will tell you, a smartwatch or a fitness tracker is an excellent choice. However, a pure running watch can be a bit weak. The sensibility of the touchscreen is a variable feature that determines the effectiveness of the device in your running.

The heart rate monitor is quite tricky to use. Runners are present with tiny dots, which are not easy to read while on the move. Fortunately, you can easily create a heart rate zone instead of working with the defaults that comes with the watch.

The superwatch also makes it easy for you to receive your call and text notification while enjoying your run. By simply tapping on the watch, you will be able to view all the alerts. The home buttons dismisses them and you can also control your iOS music by simply double pressing the Home button. Unfortunately, in the age of social media networks, the superwatch does not offer social sharing and calendar alerts.

The accuracy of the Heart Rate monitor brings with it a mixed bag. Put to the test alongside the Suunto heart rate monitor chest start during a running session provided varying results. The GPS tracker is highly accurate while you will find the step counter to be quite generous.

The Surge comes with plenty of features which include GPS tracking, smartphone notifications, music control, and a continuous heart rate monitoring all packed in a slim and an excellent design. Overall the Surge makes a perfect watch for those fitness fans who want the extra features which an ordinary activity tracker does not offer. The Fitbit Surge successfully seals the gap between a sport watch and an activity tracker.

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