Fitbit Alta HR – Battery Life and Charging
One positive to come from the reduced refresh rate of the heart rate monitor is that the Fitbit Alta HR can last close to seven days on a single charge. The Charge 2, on the other hand, tends to last closer to five days.
Charging the Alta HR simply requires you to clamp on its charging clip, which charges through a USB connection. Connecting the charger results in a secure connection, so there’s no worrying about misaligned magnetic chargers.
Should I buy the Fitbit Alta HR?
I’ve always thought the Alta range sat a little awkwardly in Fitbit’s range. The previous Alta provided around the same level of tracking as the Flex, but with the added bonus of a display that could be used for basic notifications and better at-a-glance information. This at least separated it from the Charge 2.
Now, with the addition of a heart rate sensor, the Alta HR encroaches into the Charge 2’s territory, especially since both trackers are the same price. However, compared to the Charge 2, the Alta HR is still very basic in terms of what it tracks and its applications towards sport. If Fitbit had somehow managed to make the Alta HR water-resistant like the Flex 2, it would have been easier to separate the two. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case.
The headline Sleep Stages and Sleep Insights are coming to the Charge 2 as an update, so that point of differentiation will soon become moot.
What the Alta HR has, then, is its more attractive and stylish design. Having gone from wearing the Charge 2 immediately to wearing the Alta HR, it’s hard to deny how much sleeker the latter is. It’s far more subtle and won’t stand out unless you want it to with one of the more statement-making accessories.
As such, whether it’s the right tracker for you becomes more of personal taste than is usual for fitness trackers. If you favour fashion over form, the Alta HR is a great device. If you need a fitness tracker that can also be used for exercise, the Charge 2 is a better bet.
For most, however, I’d still recommend the Charge 2. While you might only want to keep a general eye on your activity and health right now, who knows whether wearing a fitness tracker such as the Alta HR will be a gateway to wanting to increase your level of exercise and take a more active approach to your health. I’ve spoken to numerous folk for whom a fitness tracker has had such an impact, so it’s important to keep that in mind.
Video: Fitness Tracker Buying Guide
The Fitbit Alta HR’s sleep tracking has seen a useful upgrade, but for most people the Charge 2 is still the Fitbit to buy.