Gadget review: The Fitbit Flex

The Fitbit Flex is the best selling activity tracker on the market. Its core features are similar to most other wristband-trackers: it measures your sleep and steps and helps you log how many calories you eat.


It currently retails on Amazon at around $94 – cheaper than most of the competition.

Is it the price that makes the Fitbit so popular? What else does it have going for it? I tested the Flex during three months and here are my thoughts on the device.

Three things I like about it

1. A lively community: The Flex’s community features are the best of all trackers I’ve tried: I can taunt my friends, I can cheer them on or send a message. It’s fun and works well.

2. Easy to see my progress: I like the little LED-lights: they show me how close (or far away) I am from reaching my daily step-goal. There are five lights and that’s just right for me.


3. A nice mobile app: If you are a regular visitor here you know that I am a data-freak. But data must be easy to digest and this is where the Flex shines: its mobile app gives a nice and simple overview of what’s most important. What’s more, the Fitbit syncs via Bluetooth: I don’t need a cable to upload my data.


Over to the things I don’t like so much

1. Hard to wear: Putting the Flex on is really hard and that’s frustrating. I want a device that’s easy to wear. It may seem minor but these things can stop you from using a device.

2. The web-app is overwhelming: Where the mobile app is user-friendly, the web-app is just the opposite: there’s too much stuff and it is overwhelming.


3. Battery-life
It’s the shortest of any tracker I know. The battery lasts five, maximum six days. Compare this to the Jawbone with ten days – not to mention the Misfit Shine where the battery lasts several months. What’s more: the Flex doesn’t warn me when the battery goes flat. I’ve gone entire days without knowing it was empty.

So, would I buy the Flex again?

This is a tough one.

I can’t get beyond how hard it is to put the Flex on. I prefer to use the Shine even if it gives me less tips and useful data.

On the other hand, the Fitbit Flex is way ahead of the competition in the social corner. If that is important to you, the Flex is definitely an option. You are also more likely to find active friends because the Flex has so much market share. And the price is attractive of course.

But you have to get beyond the frustration of putting it on. I propose you try it out before you buy.

Have you used the Fitbit Flex? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.

Looking for a tracking device? Check out our review of the Misfit Shine here.

Co-founder of Addapp. I love tracking, coffee, anything cooked by my mom, startups, and quantifiedself.

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