Fitness Trackers & Wearables


I've been researching fitness trackers for awhile, wavering on if I really NEED one or just WANT one, and which one should I get if I were to break down and make a purchase.

I see there are several with GPS capability, the Garmins(of course), it looks like there's a TomTom highly rated by runners and a Magellen.
The Fitbit's seem to be the most popular, they just don't have GPS capability.

I was wondering if any of our members use them and would like to share their experience.


happy with my fitbit zip

It depends on what you want. For my wife and I we're happy tracking steps, active minutes & distance. We don't alter the activity, which primarily adjusts the calories count. If you get your steps, we figure you get your calories.

I track my weight, but I don't get obsessive. It's a goal, and it motivates me to keep close to that.

I don't sleep really good, but I don't need a fitbit with that feature to tell me that.

It does motivate and it is addictive. If we're close to one of our step, distances active minutes, we've both been known to walk from room to room to get there.

Amazingly, the fitbit does not log false steps from driving and hitting bumps. You can't cheat it by shaking it up and down. You have to be walking, running etc.

It's calculation of walking stride is calculated magically based on your height and weight and is amazingly accurate.

If you're really into fitness, like running or biking, a GPS based unit might be better.

You definitely want something that downloads to keep a record.



I use an Android app, Moves, on my Galaxy S6. It counts my steps and has GPS, showing where I've been. Not completely confident of the accuracy of the step counting but it provides a day-to-day comparison. That is sufficient for my needs.

Bob: My toys: Nüvi 1390T, Droid X2, Nook Color (rooted), Motorola Xoom, Kindle 2, a Yo-Yo and a Slinky. Gotta have toys.


An article in Consumer Report raises the issue of some of these devices transmit (or the smart phone forwards) unencrypted personal information, putting the user at risk.

Misfit works for me

If you just want something to measure activity and sleep quality, at minimum cost, the Misfit works well. It can be worn on the wrist, on the ankle (for biking), in a pocket or on the sleeve. It's waterproof and can measure activity when swimming. It uses a disposable battery that last up to six months. Mine stays on my wrist all the time and does everything I want. If I need a gps while walking, I just use my phone.

I've got the Flash model but would likely buy the more expensive Shine if I needed to do it again.

Fitbit One

I've used a Fitbit One for a year and a half. I track the data with my iPhone. It works well for tracking steps, floors, basic activity. I enter fluid comsumption (as that's something I need to worry about, getting enough fluids). I also use it to track sleep.

I don't worry about it not having GPS -- if I want to track something where position is important, like running or riding, I wear a Polar heartrate chest strap with Bluetooth, and use the Polar app on my iPhone for tracking.

The basic tracking the fitbit one does it does well, in a small package that I only have to recharge once a week. I don't want the size or the battery drain associated with GPS. I clip the fitbit in place in the morning and take it off at night. Simple, pretty much invisible.

Recently got an iPhone 6, and am starting to use the Health app -- it looks to be quite close to the fitbit in steps, flights, and such. Pity politics takes precedence over functionality and Apple won't talk to fitbit.

Oh, I do find the data useful! Not only the direct things like how much I'm walking, how many flights of stairs, but being able to look back and understand that when I don't get a lot of sleep for a few days in a row, my performance in many areas tends to suffer.

Or that Hell Week at the Theatre is just that -- covering a lot more steps, and if I'm up in the rigging or on the rails, that shows up as a lot more flights of stairs. And the late nights tend to show up as less sleep!

Nuvi 2460, 680, DATUM Tymserve 2100, Trimble Thunderbolt, Ham radio, Macintosh, Linux, Windows

Samsung Gear Fit

I have a Samsung Gear Fit. The Gear Fit is a good, basic activity tracker. I like it because it has what I am looking for:
• It is nice-looking, with a stylish display when I use it as a watch.
• It measures activities fairly well, as I have compared it against tread mills and ellipticals at the gym.
• It has a good static heart rate monitor but doesn’t seem to monitor or average heart rate over time.

Of course, it has some drawbacks:
• It currently only works with a Samsung phone! Apparently there are some generic android apps, but I haven’t tried any.
• It doesn't have GPS(the higher-end Gear S does) but I don't do much cross-country running anymore.
• The Samsung S Health app for downloading and monitoring activity is not very good.

But I actually like the Gear Fit a lot – it does what I want and was a reasonable price.


I tried using the App that came with my Samsung Galaxy Note 4

1. The phone is too big for a pocket so you need a fanny pack.... Not good.

2. It used too much battery having the app turned on all day .

3. I had to remember to always carry the phone with me when doing anything around the house or out doors.

These three reason are good ones to not use a phone.

If I get serious about it I will get something to wear like a bracelet or watch. The phone with an app is not the thing to use.

Mary, Nuvi 2450, Garmin Viago, Honda Navigation, Nuvi 750 (gave to son)

Food for thought

Lawsuit says Fitbit overestimates sleep by 67 minutes per night
from Ars Technica by Joe Mullin

A Florida man has filed a lawsuit against Fitbit, saying the company’s claims that its devices can track sleep are false. The plaintiff, James Brickman bought a Fitbit Flex in 2013. His case is seeking class-action status, hoping to represent consumers who bought any of Fitbit’s line of products that include sleep-tracking technology.

Illiterate? Write for free help.

Old Thread, but still applicable (maybe)

Has anyone tried adding POIs on the newer Garmin GPS included wearables?


Your FitBit can be used in court, too.
A woman falsely accused someone of rape, and her fitbit proved she was walking around the entire night in question.

Tech cuts all directions....if it records for You, it also records for everyone else, especially Big Brother. And just as your phone calls, emails, texts and geo-location are tracked and stored, "just in case" its needed years from now, so is your fitbit info.

Kind of interesting how we have quickly offered up almost every single private thought and movement to government inspection, as most feel there is no right to privacy and if you aren't doing anything wrong, there is nothing wrong with the govt watching.

Need vs Want, ;) Yeah, just get it!!!

I have a Garmin fenix, and love it. I can use a HRM and Temperature sensor with it. It is very impressive what data gathering this thing can do. The fenix has evolved a few versions since mine, so I have to think they have gotten even better. It can provide calorie expenditures also, good when setting that as a goal.

I am looking into a Garmin vivoactive HR to replace the fenix. Just want a new one, still love the fenix.

My wife and I share the fenix, we are able to load our profiles and switch between our activities very easily.

The online data gathering capability in Garmin Connect is pretty cool in that you can upload your activities and collect them, visualize them, analyze them, and admire them. It is pretty cool watching all the miles pile up.

And then there is the linkage with Apple Health and Garmin Connect, which is pretty cool. If you have an Apple iPhone, I would recommend that you look into how well the fitness device you are considering integrates with Apple health. I am learning more about Apple Health and it is pretty good. Garmin and Apple Health get along pretty good, it is working for me.

And I can also save the Garmin data from the fenix in BaseCamp if I wanted to stay offline.

GPSMAP64s, iPhone 12, Yaesu VX-8R w/GPS.

Yes, works on the original fenix

visiter555 wrote:

Has anyone tried adding POIs on the newer Garmin GPS included wearables?

I have loaded POI and maps on the fenix. The fenix (original) is manageable pretty much like a regular GPSr, with a computer and BaseCamp, Mapinstaller, etc.

GPSMAP64s, iPhone 12, Yaesu VX-8R w/GPS.


How "big" was your POI file?

diesel wrote:
visiter555 wrote:

Has anyone tried adding POIs on the newer Garmin GPS included wearables?

I have loaded POI and maps on the fenix. The fenix (original) is manageable pretty much like a regular GPSr, with a computer and BaseCamp, Mapinstaller, etc.

How accurate is your

How accurate is your Wearable work during biking? I walk and bike as well as swim. I like the specs of the VivoActive HR, but would prefer something with more of a classic round watch face. I really like the Fenex 3 with HR BUT the price is outrageous for my poor budget!

By the way, my phone is a BlackBerry Z30 (work) and not likely to change to Android or iOS...

Not Sure

visiter555 wrote:

How "big" was your POI file?

diesel wrote:
visiter555 wrote:

Has anyone tried adding POIs on the newer Garmin GPS included wearables?

I have loaded POI and maps on the fenix. The fenix (original) is manageable pretty much like a regular GPSr, with a computer and BaseCamp, Mapinstaller, etc.

I do not recall loading a POI file on to the fenix.

I add POI as individual points, drag them on to the fenix using BaseCamp.

The POI files I use on my 64s, such as Rest Areas, are not something I would use on the fenix. I load the fenix with POI I use for biking, hiking, etc. I have not come across a suitable POI file that would be compelling to load on to the fenix.

GPSMAP64s, iPhone 12, Yaesu VX-8R w/GPS.

Fitness Trackers & Wearables...?

Don't want one. Doesn't interest me.


I'm not really lost.... just temporarily misplaced!

And that means...

Move along....nothing to see here. lol

Nuvi1300WTGPS wrote:

Don't want one. Doesn't interest me.


Any opinions on the Apple

Any opinions on the Apple Watch for fitness? In thinking of getting one since I have an iPhone.

Done with wrist devices

I feel like I want to be done with wristwatches and similar devices, kind of a diversion from my normal view here that I prefer specialized devices over letting the smartphone do everything. I'm happy with my iPhone tracking steps, distance, and flights of stairs daily and don't want a Fitbit or similar device. I'm sure there are some that are not wrist-based, but still, the smartphone's enough for me on this one.

I do recommend goal-oriented people track some fitness objectives like this, though. It does seem to improve behavior.

JMoo On


ceevee wrote:

Any opinions on the Apple Watch for fitness? In thinking of getting one since I have an iPhone.

It's good... for me it's tracking is motivational for me...

*Keith* MacBook Pro *wifi iPad(2012) w/BadElf GPS & iPhone6 + Navigon*