Best Fitness Tracker for Elliptical – It could help to ask yourself if you’re interested in and/or need a more straight-laced fitness tracker that focuses primarily on steps and general activity or if venturing into the smartwatch category will be the most economical, efficient, and enjoyable purchase.
And since fitness trackers are really meant to encourage an active lifestyle, you’ll be best served if you select a model that motivates you. That’s the device that will make the most impact toward your individual wellness goals.
A fitness tracker is a wearable device that helps you keep track of basic and specific activities—like daily step count, walking, and swimming in some cases—all toward the goal of being more tuned into the amount you move and moving more generally.back to menu ↑
- Track workouts, heart RATE, distance, calories burned, floors climbed, active minutes and steps
- Monitor your sleep automatically and wake with a silent alarm
The Fitbit Charge line has produced some of our favorite fitness trackers on the market since the original model’s debut in 2014. Now in its fourth generation, Fitbit builds on what we like about the Charge family with the addition of GPS to map your exercise route without a phone, Spotify support, more sleep tools, and a motivating new metric called Active Zone Minutes.
Plus Fitbit Pay is now available on all Charge 4 models, not just the more expensive Special Edition. Though we’d like to see a color screen, the $149.95 Charge 4 is an excellent update, and an Editors’ Choice.back to menu ↑
- Easy-to use GPS running watch tracks how far, how fast and where you run
- Estimates heart rate at the wrist, all day and night, using Garmin elevate wrist heart rate technology
The Garmin Forerunner 10 looks nearly identical to the $139 Garmin Forerunner 15, which adds daily activity-tracking features and Bluetooth (but only for Garmin accessories).
It has the same squarish body, a traditional wristband and four tactile buttons (one on each corner). It also comes in a variety of demure and bright colors, including orange, lime green, pink and violet.back to menu ↑
- GPS model lets you take calls and reply to texts from your wrist
- Measure your blood oxygen with an all-new sensor and app
The Apple Watch Series 7, announced in September 2021, is the current iteration of the Apple Watch that originally launched in 2015 and replaced the Series 6. The Apple Watch Series 7 builds on the design of previous Apple Watch models with a more rounded design and offers some notable new features including larger displays, improved durability, and faster charging.
The Apple Watch Series 7 is available in new 41 and 45mm size options that are 1mm larger than the 40mm and 44mm options of previous generations, and the casings have been refined with softer, more rounded edges. Like the Apple Watch Series 6, Series 7 models feature a black ceramic and sapphire crystal backing and a Digital Crown with haptic feedback. The Digital Crown has a built-in sensor for taking ECG readingsback to menu ↑
- 【ALEXA & GPS BUILT-IN】You can talk to Amazon Alexa on your Amazfit Bip U Pro smartwatch, Ask questions, get translations, check the weather, control your smart home devices and more. And get precise tracking of your distance, daily step count thanks to integrated GPS.
- 【60+ SPORTS MODES & 5 ATM WATERPROOF】Featuring 60+ sports modes to help you exercise at a higher level. Water-resistant up to 50 meters, you can wear the fitness watch for swimming and it will record your achievements even underwater.
The Bip S is the third variant of the(along with the Amazfit Bip Lite). Created by Chinese company Huami in 2018, the original Bip was a fan favorite from the get-go. It did the basic smartwatch tasks for much less than competitors, and it lasted up to 45 days on a single charge. , calling it one of the best low-key smartwatches around.
The Bip S has better fitness features and a slightly better screen than its predecessor, but it hasn’t changed much in the last two years. And while it’s still one of the best deals out there, it lags a bit behind others, like the Apple Watch or Galaxy Watch, when it comes to features and connectivity.back to menu ↑
- Brighter colors, smarter life: 0.95-inch AMOLED touchscreen, resolution: 240 x 120 pixels. Connection: Bluetooth 4.2, waterproof 5 ATM. System requirements: Android 4.4 or later. Also the HUAWEI watch store offers various watch faces in different styles, such as sports, cartoon, intelligence and high-tech. (available only on Android and not applicable to iOS system).
- Smart Heart Rate Tracking: Thanks to professional optical devices, processing chips and AI algorithm, the HUAWEI TruSeen 3.5 accurately monitors your heart rate and provides smart vibration reminders if your heart rate exceeds the heart rate limit. While you are sleeping, the device will continue to monitor your sleep while the invisible light does not cause distractions.
For years, Xiaomi’s Mi Band line has been the top dog in the budget fitness tracker space. Huawei aims to change that notion with its new fitness tracker, the Huawei Band 6.
The new Huawei fitness tracker is a capable little wearable, with a surprising amount of features not often seen in the sub-€50 market. Read our full Huawei Band 6 review to see if the wearable gives the Xiaomi Mi Band 6 a run for its money.back to menu ↑
Best Fitness Tracker for Elliptical – BUYER’S GUIDEback to menu ↑
Fitness Tracker Operating Systems
Fitness trackers all require a smartphone (via a mobile app usually) to set up, use, and enjoy to their maximum capacity. But you can’t necessarily use any smartphone with any wearable. These main fitness tracker operating systems are generally widely compatible with Android and iOS devices, but you’ll definitely need to make sure the device you’re considering will work well with your smartphone and the complementary mobile app or desktop software.
Fitbit watches come with the appropriately named Fitbit OS, which is compatible with Android and Apple devices and Windows 10 as well. Highlights of this technology include basic activity tracking as well as more advanced sleeping data in newer models. This OS also offers a wide range of third-party integrations with fitness-related services and apps including Amazon Alexa, Runkeeper, Strava, and MyFitnessPal. All Fitbit OS devices interact with the Fitbit app, which is available in mobile or web versions. App integration and setup is the only way to get critical updates, sync data, and access data too. The software continues to evolve and offer appealing smart features like mobile payment, but onboard GPS isn’t something you’ll see in many Fitbit OS models.
The Garmin brand has its own Garmin OS that’s widely compatible with Android and iOS smartphones. Like Fitbit, Garmin fitness trackers work in tandem with the brand’s own platform-specific Garmin Connect mobile app. For those who prefer desktop access as well, the Garmin Express software offers syncing, software, and map updates. While the Garmin OS overlaps with Fitbit to offer music playback ability in some devices, similar smartwatch features, and free and available apps and watch faces, this OS stands apart for its fitness-oriented traits. Some models feature animated workouts and the Garmin Connect allows users to create workouts, set or find nearby routes, and sign up for racing training plans with the help of a virtual coach. The Garmin OS also dives deep into wellness data including menstrual tracking, respiration rate, and stress levels.
Tizen is an open-source, Linux-based software. (Linux is an alternative operating system to Windows or MacOs.) This means that the software is available to any developer who wants to make apps that work with products that run on this operating system. In the wearables market, Samsung is the only manufacturer that uses Tizen OS on its smartwatches and fitness trackers. There are fewer complimentary apps available for Tizen OS devices than Google Play apps for Wear OS trackers. But Tizen OS wearables often come with a rotating bezel feature for quicker navigation and compatibility with a broad range of Android devices and even iPhones too.
Wear OS by Google (and formerly called Android Wear), is an operating system based on Android and developed specifically for wearables. As you’d expect, Wear OS devices are highly compatible with Android smartphones and provide similar perks with access to the Google Play store—where there is a wide range of apps that are compatible across smartphones, smartwatches, and fitness trackers alike. Wear OS watches also span several brands, since Google has partnered with labels like Misfit, Fossil, Kate Spade, and Montblanc to create fitness-oriented wearables based on this platform.
While the Apple brand doesn’t produce any dedicated fitness trackers, all Apple smartwatches operate on Watch OS, which folds in many of the same activity and workout-tracking features other fitness tracker OSs offer. Watch OS also delivers several standout health/wellness features that the other tracker manufacturers have yet to catch up with. These include a fall-detection feature that can call for assistance with a tap of a button, a decibel monitor that prohibits volumes levels above a certain threshold, and EKG (versus optical sensor) heart-rate monitoring.back to menu ↑
Style Vs. Durability
Once you know a fitness tracker is compatible with your smartphone, the next big decision to make is whether looks or utility are more important to you—or what kind of balance between the two is most appealing.
If you want to wear this device 24/7, it should be water-resistant enough for the shower, comfortable enough to sleep in, and versatile enough to match your wardrobe choices. Models that can transition more smoothly from your morning workout to the workday come with typical circular face shapes and with more traditional watch band materials like leather or metal—and come in various colors. Some that fit more under the umbrella of hybrid smartwatches don’t even give themselves away as fitness tracking watches. These models look like a typical analog watch with hidden or hideable fitness tracker features.
Durability doesn’t necessarily preclude style, but the more it looks like a traditional analog watch, the less comfortable or effective a device may be during your next workout. If the stylish face is too large or heavy, it might not sit flush against your wrist and provide accurate data tracking. And while a leather band looks attractive, it isn’t as friendly to sweat as models with nylon and silicone straps that look sportier than fashion-forward, but dry faster and are easy to clean.
And if you’re a minimalist and you’re not a fan of bulky watches or accessories, many fitness trackers are slim and look more like bracelets than watches. Some bands can even tuck underneath the face of the watch to provide a smooth fit and eliminate excess material.back to menu ↑
Another important part of the style/utility argument is the display. It’s probably the biggest part of informing how sporty, fashionable, and easy-to-use a wearable is.
Some fitness trackers, those that are the slim and rectangular kind, come with similarly shaped displays that are taller than they are wide and sit well under or just a little over an inch. Larger, circular displays are closer to 2 inches, and often seem larger because of the size of the case and type of material—which could range from aluminum to stainless steel. An inch or so doesn’t seem like a huge size gap, but this extra screen allowance could make all the difference between effortless taps or pecking away at the display without success.
Fitness trackers come with the option of several different display technologies. The most straightforward models might come with grayscale or color LCDs (liquid crystal display). These screens use liquid crystals to illuminate pixels on screen. This is not to be confused with LED, which stands for light-emitting diode and uses backlighting to bring color to pixels.
You’ll find an advanced form of this technology in wearables called OLED (organic LED). OLEDs make it possible for every single pixel to light up, which leads to more intense shades and greater contrast. That’s why you’ll see OLEDs in wearables—because they provide easy-to-see and read displays. Although they don’t look so great in bright and direct sunlight, so if you always exercise outdoors, this display technology could be a let-down.
AMOLED, or Active-Matrix OLED, devices, take OLEDs one step further. These displays can produce faster responses with touch prompts and are quite readable in direct sunlight. Super AMOLED technology kicks AMOLED up a notch by offering even clearer and brighter screens and visibility in all lighting situations.
Bezels and Buttons
Touchscreen functionality can make some interactions faster and more convenient. We’re used to smartphones and other smart devices that rely on this type of operation. And while Super AMOLED display technology makes scrolling on a small fitness tracker quite fast, touch prompts on such a small surface can be tiring and less efficient. Many devices have at least one or two physical buttons for starting and stopping activities, moving back pages, or accessing settings. Others feature bezels that rival the efficiency and speed of scrolling motions. It’s worth considering your preferences and how buttons, scrolling, or bezels slow or speed things up for you.back to menu ↑
Activity And Health Tracking
The name of the game when shopping for a fitness tracker is a device’s activity tracking prowess. Most cover the basics like walking and running and maybe even some cardio- or body-weight-based workouts. But accuracy and depth of data tracked change the conversation considerably. If you’re someone who likes to log workouts on workout equipment at the gym (treadmill, elliptical, etc), keep track of steps, and receive reminders to move throughout the work day, you’ll probably be satisfied by any number of models on the market.
But not all competent devices offer the same level of granularity with other health data. If you’re interested in sleeping better, some fitness trackers provide detailed sleep monitoring technology so that you can analyze sleep phases or at least be more aware of your patterns. Other advanced health stats like resting and all-day heart rate, VO2 max, blood oxygen levels, and perceived stress levels can offer a fuller and bigger wellness picture—if that’s what you’re going for.
Specific types of activity tracking could mean more if you’re a particular type of athlete or exerciser. If you’re a dedicated runner, swimmer, or golfer, some brands and devices will be better for your needs since they offer a greater variety of sport-related profiles and the kind of data points you’re looking for. For example, many fitness-tracking wearables offer a 5ATM water-resistance rating, which is suitable for lap swimming and showering. But not all offer data on the number of strokes per length or can detect your stroke type or swolf (swimming efficiency).back to menu ↑
Another critical part of choosing the right fitness tracker based on your preferred activities and sports, is GPS. If you regularly participate in a distance sport like running or skiing, a fitness tracker without GPS is not very valuable. Some wearables use your smartphone as a GPS source, also called connected GPS. But if you’d rather leave your phone at home, look for models with built-in GPS monitors and barometers (for altitude measurements).
Accuracy and level of detail can be deal-breakers as well, depending on your sport and preferences. All wearables are impacted by everyday environmental factors like tall buildings and weather fluctuations that can cause GPS signal interference. But you’ll increase the odds in your favor if you purchase a wearable with built-in GPS. It will require no other devices (like your smartphone) to capture location and the technology continues to improve as manufacturers make tweaks.back to menu ↑
A solid fitness tracker should be able to last for the whole day—and most last at least several days and maybe even up to one full week. Stretching at least five days out of one charge is not an outlandish ask on some fitness trackers that fall under the hybrid smartwatch umbrella. If you’re interested in extending a single charge, some models allow you to use your fitness tracker as a watch only—which could extend the battery life a week or more.
Other models are always on and can’t enter watch mode, which means you’re probably looking at a charging session every couple of days or so. This is especially true if you’re an active person who logs workouts daily and you enjoy using all of the smartwatch features fitness trackers offer.back to menu ↑
The differences between smartwatches and fitness trackers are sometimes obvious based on design details and features lists. But the lines are blurry and continue to blur since many fitness trackers have at least one or a handful of smartwatch features—including voice control, smartphone and email notifications, the ability to respond to texts and emails, or play music right on the device. And some hybrid smartwatches blend the best of both worlds with all of these traits in addition to fitness tracking capability.
Most fitness trackers use Bluetooth and/or Wi-Fi for data syncing or downloading apps to the device. Other connectivity options such as incorporating a cellular data plan with the device is not something you’ll see in a dedicated fitness tracker. But many newer models have joined the ranks of smartwatches by offering contactless payment via NFC (near field communication) technology, which sends data wirelessly between two devices. This technology works with mobile payment apps like Apple Pay, Garmin Pay, or Samsung Pay so that you can leave your wallet at home and pay with the tap of your wearable.back to menu ↑
Frequently Asked Questionsback to menu ↑
How To Pick The Best Fitness Tracker?
Fitness trackers can be as basic or as feature-loaded as you want. Looks and comfort are helpful starting points. This is an accessory you’ll be wearing a lot, if not daily, so make sure it’s comfortable and suits your personal style. It’s also important to consider operating system compatibility (beyond devices alone) and the possible third-party integrations and smart features (music, contactless pay) you want—and are willing to pay for.back to menu ↑
Fitness trackers are more popular than ever before as people gain a new focus on wellness and counting steps and calories, but how do you pick the best one? Not to worry, we’ve put together a list of the best fitness trackers for any budget, evaluated their tracking ability, battery life, and software. Our reviewers have spent weeks testing each of these wearables to make sure you can find one to meet your needs.