Fitbit has a cheap new wearable − but you can’t buy one

Fitbit could well be unveiling one or two new devices at MWC 2019 later this month, but one new wearable has sneaked out early with no fanfare whatsoever.

It’s Fitbit’s cheapest device yet, apparently, but we can’t reveal exact pricing. Why? Well, the Fitbit Inspire is only available on health insurance plans, or corporate contracts where employers provide wearables to their employees to encourage a fit and healthy lifestyle. As such, the exact pricing will depend on factors such as the size of the business and the employer’s needs.

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What we do know is that the Fitbit Inspire comes in two flavours. First, there’s the more basic model which includes step counting, sleep tracking, a touchscreen, reminders to move and basic notifications.

It can be worn on the wrist or on a clip, Fitbit One-style, but unlike the Fitbit One, it’s also swimproof, which should make the inevitable washing machine accidents less terminal.

For a bit more, there’s the Fitbit Inspire HR which – you guessed it – adds heart-rate tracking to the mix. On top of that, it also provides more detailed sleep insights, has modes for different forms of exercise, provides a cardio fitness level and can be paired with a phone’s GPS for more accurate run tracking.

Fitbit promises both wearables will offer up to five days worth of battery life off a charge.

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Fitbit is a company that is facing a squeeze on its business from two sides, facing off against the high-end Apple Watch in the premium market, while feeling a number of cheap and cheerful Chinese trackers undercutting it at the other.

As CEO James Park told CNBC, the company’s revenue is increasingly tied to its corporate customers, with 6.8 million users who are either employees, patients or on a health plan of some kind. In that context, a dedicated tracker for that particular market looks like a canny move.

Would you buy a Fitbit Inspire if it were available to consumers? Let us know on Twitter: @TrustedReviews.