There was a point in 2018 when the Fitbit product portfolio became quite complex. Multiple trackers plus two smartwatches. The company began 2019 by rationalising their entire range of products and pulling the plug on trackers like the Alta and the Flex. Suddenly there was just the one tracker – the new Charge 3 and two smartwatches – the Ionic and Versa. If you wanted a Fitbit under Rs 10,000 you had no option whatsoever. It’s why Fitbit’s new duo of trackers – the Inspire and Inspire HR are key to the brand’s game plan in India.
Fitbit is betting big on a large audience who haven’t taken their first wearable bite yet. If you’re in the market for a fitness tracker, there are heaps of options at all price points. You can even buy wearables that cost less than a back cover for your iPhone. But many of these don’t look refined and are not backed by companion Apps that can match the likes of Fitbit. The Inspire is the cheaper of the two and as you’ve probably guessed, lacks a heart rate monitor that is a key feature in the more expensive Inspire HR. We tested the HR and certainly recommend it over the Fitbit Inspire especially for active lifestyles.
The Inspire HR is ridiculously light. It works whether you are looking for your tracker to double up as your watch on the left wrist or as a tracker for your right wrist that you can wear along with your favourite heirloom watch. It opts for a plastic body unlike the aluminium casing on the Charge 3, Fitbit’s top of the line fitness tracker. We like the slight curves on the display that are not just a cool design touch but improve the visibility. The OLED display offers great visibility even under bright light. While these trackers come with silicon straps out of the box, you can swap them for metal or leather bands. The Inspire HR also has one of Fitbit’s best chargers with a tiny footprint. Battery life is a key strength for all Fitbit trackers and just like our tests with the Charge 3, the Inspire HR also delivered on Fitbit’s promise of 6-7 days of battery life.
So, what are all the stuff that you can get done with this wearable? There are call and text alerts but there’s no quick reply option like the Charge 3 (currently available only on Android devices). You get all the Fitbit essentials – step and calorie counts, sleep tracking and 15+ exercise modes that are super handy in the gym. There’s no altimeter, that means you can’t gloat about all those floors you climbed. Active users will also dig the swim tracking (yes, you can plunge into the pool with your Inspire HR) and also the pace and distance tracking through connected GPS (via your smartphone). In terms of its feature set, the Inspire HR compares quite favourably with the pricier Charge 3 except for a smaller screen. The touch sensitivity in this display is a big improvement over its predecessors, you don’t have to poke at it violently even with sweaty palms at the gym. Text is slightly small though – especially when you’re scrolling through your step and calorie stats.
The Fitbit Inspire HR may be Fitbit’s cheapest device but it’s also probably the most sorted. It walks the talk with a feature set that will please both first-time fitness tracker buyers and active users who need a tracker to keep a close eye on their daily achievements. It’s certainly not the cheapest tracker and we would have liked to see more watch face options. But it’s quite a compelling package for its price tag.
The Fitbit Inspire HR costs Rs 8,999 (The Fitbit Inspire costs Rs 6,999).