Fitbit's latest model looks to compete with Apple and Samsung

The Fitbit Charge 3 may be the fitness tracker company's most decisive step into the smartwatch market so far


Fitbit has released the Charge 3 fitness tracker watch, the latest in its Charge range of watches. Despite looking almost identical to the last few iterations of the Charge, Fitbit has made some significant changes with this version, so much so that it may end up competing with more traditional smartwatch brands such as Apple and Samsung.

The Charge 3 has been equipped with a new aluminum shell and a stronger Gorilla Glass 3 screen which has 40% more active screen area than the previous Charge watch. Instead of the standard black and white display, this iteration now has greyscale colors which allows for a more active and discernible display.

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The watch still has all of the fitness tracker features former versions did, as well as a new swim tracker and is water resistant up to 50 meters, has an upgraded heartrate and Sp02 (oxygen saturation) monitor. It will also last up to seven days on a single charge, which is two days more than the former Charge watch.

However, other than the standard fitness tracker features, it has adopted a few features more commonly associated with smartwatches: All physical buttons have been replaced with a haptic feedback touchscreen, and it has a clock-face option which can be swiped away to reveal stats such as active minutes exercised, calories burnt and steps taken.

While the new Charge does not have GPS capabilities (an intentional choice to allow for a longer battery life, according to the company) it can now connect to smartphones and Android users can even accept or reject calls and reply to messages via a number of canned response. Users can see app notifications, calls, calendar and the company said it plans to include "popular brand apps" in the near future.

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