Founded in 2008, Fitbit makes fitness trackers and smartwatches. At the moment, Fitbit’s most sophisticated smartwatch is the Sense. Also, it’s the first Fitbit to offer electrocardiogram (ECG) heart rate monitoring and the only Fitbit to monitor stress through electrodermal activity.
In addition, it tracks your workouts, stress levels, sleep, and menstrual cycle. Sense isn’t cheap, so you might wonder whether it’s worth it. Fitbit sent me a Sense to test, and although it’s only been a few months, it’s already become a habit of mine.
In this article, I’ll give my honest opinion of whether or not the Fitbit Sense is worth buying.
- The display is easy to read
- Tracking your sleep
- Easy to use and set up
- Buttons don’t work
- Bands are easy to swap
- ECG, exercise, heart rate, and water intake tracking
- Tools for managing stress
- Customizable widgets
- Watches can control music
- Notifications on smartphones
- GPS built-in
- The Find My Phone app (which I use way too often)
- Wearing a watch can be tricky
- Messages and phone calls can’t be customized
- The app takes forever to load today
- Syncing GPS could be faster
- It’s easy to crack the screen
- Fitbit Sense tracks what metrics?
- Sense tracks a bunch of metrics to give you a better idea of your health.
- Here are some of them:
- Minutes in the Active Zone
- Rate of breathing
- Burned calories
- The score for cardio fitness
- Climbing floors
- Consumption of food
- Rate of heart
- Cycle of menstruation
- Stages of sleep
- Saturation of oxygen (SpO2)
- Consumption of water
Some of these things are automatically recorded, like your heart rate, but others have to be entered manually, like food and water intake.
The Fitbit Sense has several sensors, many of which are used for fitness tracking.
It also features three sensors geared more toward health data, including the Pure Pulse 2.0, SpO2, and temperature sensors.
The Sense calibrates your heart rate approximately every 5 seconds using a Pure Pulse 2.0 sensor on the back of the device.
However, some reviewers mention that the heart rate monitor isn’t as accurate as Apple or Garmin’s.
The SpO2 measures how much oxygen is in your blood. SpO2 readings can be received through Sense by either downloading a clockface that tracks it or downloading the SpO2 Tracker app.
The Sense only monitors your SpO2 while you sleep, not on-demand like some smartwatches.
With the Sense, you can track your skin’s temperature while sleeping, unlike other Fitbits. Based on your baseline temperature, you may be sleeping well or getting sick depending on whether you’re above or below your baseline temperature. Your EDA stress score is also based on temperature.
You’ll love the Sense and Fitbit apps because they have lots of cool features, like:
- Scan your ECG
- Scan the EDA
- Tracking your workouts
- Tracking your sleep
- Notifications on your phone
- Play some music.
- Pay with Fitbit
These key features are outlined below.
One of the main things that make Sense stand out from the competition is that it can do an ECG scan to help monitor your health.
You might also get a warning about atrial fibrillation (Afib), a serious condition you should talk to a doctor about. You need to enable the phone app’s ECG widget to use. Open the watch widget. You’ll then be told to keep your hand and arm still for 30 seconds while holding the watch’s corners. The sense will display your reading right away. ECG scans won’t work if your heart rate is under 50, rendering the feature useless if your heart rate is that low.
On the Sense, you can use the EDA scan to manage stress. You go through a guided mindfulness session while the scan measures electrodermal activity in your palm.
Two minutes of deep breathing will be required during the session. Once you’re done, you’ll be asked to log your feelings. Your EDA responses will be graphed over time by the EDA app.
You’ll have fewer EDA responses if you’re calmer. This feature is cool, but it can be hard to sit still for 2 minutes in the middle of the day.
The bottom line
There are many features in the Fitbit Sense smartwatch which are easy to read. In addition, it has ECG and EDA monitoring and is less expensive than most similar smartwatches.
I think the Fitbit Sense is great for keeping track of your health, especially your sleep patterns and heart rate. If you want something simple, streamlined, or to track certain sports metrics, you might be able to find a better smartwatch.