Is An Apple Watch Or Fitbit The Better Fitness Tracker?

Nowadays, there are a variety of ways to use a watch; not just to tell time. According to a 2019 study, fitness devices help to facilitate exercise and motivate wearers to participate in physical activities. The watches are designed for users to become more health conscious. Many have features to monitor health behavior even when individuals are not working out. These wearable devices have become a normal part of health and fitness, and even just everyday life.

Cardiologist Seth Martin, M.D., M.H.S. seems to agree, noting that "fitness trackers are a great tool for heart health" (via Hopkins Medicine). People who wear these trackers consistently — whether during a workout or when running errands — can form healthy fitness habits. There are studies showing the possibility to increase the daily number of steps you take by a mile; which is just one way to make your heart healthier. So when it comes to these digital watches, which is the better brand for fitness tracking — Apple or Fitbit? 

Pros and cons of the Apple Watch

Although the Apple Watch is not solely a fitness tracker through its health features, it has those capabilities. The device can passively track your daily activities and alert users with reminders to get moving, according to Live Science. You can view stats on your heart rate and workouts like calories burned, distance traveled, and pace. The watch will send you updates on your activity, so you won't have to keep checking back. It can even monitor how long you've been standing. All these features will cost you approximately $350 — it's one of the pricier versions of this motivating fitness friend.

Despite all the glam of Apple watches, it lacks functionality for serious fitness junkies. With the integrated Workout app, there is a lack of metrics and workouts (via Wired). Using the GPS function will quickly drain the battery. And you'll have to download other apps on your Apple Watch to unlock its full potential.

Best and worst of Fitbit

Fitbit is a cheaper alternative to Apple Watches. According to Tom's Guide, Fitbits are one of the best fitness trackers you can buy. The wearable device monitors your sleep, activities, and steps. All its devices, which start as low as $100, come with the ability to track menstrual cycles and connect to users' smartphones. With this device, you can join the Fitbit community and train with other users. Higher tech models can track heart rates, have map services, and do on-screen exercises.

The most advanced model is the Fitbit Sense. Although most innovative, it isn't perfect. Healthline reported that the device cracked easily. The GPS sync and daily dashboard left users waiting too long to load. Despite the smartwatch functions, there aren't any features to make phone calls or send personal texts. Another issue revolves around accessibility, as the watch wasn't easy to put on single-handedly. 

Which is better?

The verdict really depends on the user. According to Tech Radar, if you're an iPhone user, you might as well get an Apple watch. You will be able to connect your devices and have exclusive access to Siri and other iOS. For Android users, a Fitbit will better complement your phone. If you are purchasing a watch with exercise as the primary use, the Fitbit edges out the Apple Watch. The Fitbit has functions to track your workout and health stats, coming in at a cheaper price than its competitor.

Although the hardware might be cheaper, you'll still have to fork over some change to unlock all the benefits of Fitbit's premium membership. As Living Etc noted, Apple Watches don't require a premium membership. Plus Apple's device is more durable and customizable. However, if you're willing to splurge on a premiere Fitbit membership, it will deliver greater fitness features than Apple.