I’ve had my Fibit Ultra for about 5 months but when the new Fitbit One came out, I had to have it….and I’m so glad I upgraded. There was absolutely no issue with the Ultra, which is currently not available as it is being replaced by the One – I’m actually selling it at half price to a friend because it’s in ‘like new’ condition and my husband still has his. However, the One takes everything that was great about Ultra tracker and improves upon it with a couple great features.
Fitbit Ultra vs. Fitbit One
The main technical upgrades that I was excited for were:
- Sweat, water and rain proof. I workout hard and when my husband and I walk outside, there is always a chance that we’ll get caught in the rain. When we have, the first thing I’ve done is work on protecting my bodybugg/Fitbit and iPhone. It’s nice to know this isn’t a concern anymore. The Fitbit One is smaller than the Ultra and fits into a rubber case, which protects all of its connectors that were previously exposed. Please note that it is NOT fully waterproof and cannot be submerged in water or worn while swimming.
- Syncs to Smartphones and Tablets. Unfortunately I only have an iPhone 4 (syncing starts at 4S and up) but I will be upgraded to the iPhone 5 soon so I am looking forward to this feature. I don’t consult my current iPhone Fitbit app that much anyway because I can see all the info I need right on my device, but it will be a really nice feature when I can take advantage of it. Right now I have to shove my head halfway into my shirt to see my current burn (I wear my Fitbit on my bra), which can get me odd looks in public… I’m looking forward to just pulling out my phone, opening my app, and seeing everything right there.
- Silent Wake Alarm. You can set multiple alarms and your Fitbit will vibrate. I have two set up in the morning in addition to my iPhone alarm, but this is also a great feature if you need to remind yourself of something at the same time every day. You can choose to have the alarm go off once or repeat (and you select which days of the week it will go off). This is such a simple but great upgrade, I love it!
New to the Fitbit? In addition to the feature upgrades I listed above, the Ultra and One both offer the following capabilities:
- Steps, Distance & Calories Burned. This is the most basic information you need if you’re working on losing weight or just looking to live a healthy lifestyle. I’ve used both the bodybugg and the Fitbit and the calories burned were pretty much the same (to within a 20-40 calorie difference at times) so I’m going to say the calorie burn is accurate. It also tracks the steps and distance you’ve walked, and even flights of stairs. These display on your Fitbit device, mobile app, and website in real time.
- Activity Badges. This is a really fun feature that I didn’t see the appeal of until I started earning different badges. I love getting emails (like the one seen below) informing me that I’ve earned a new badge. I feel accomplished and it makes me check out what I’ve earned and excited to start working towards the next goal. Between that, the random messages that pop up on my iPhone telling me that I’m almost to my daily step goal, and my daily food and calorie logging, I’ve always got fitness and my goals on my mind.
- Sleep. This was one feature I didn’t think I’d care about but now I’m addicted to. The Fitbit shows you your hours asleep, time it takes for you to fall asleep, number of times woken throughout the night, and rates your sleep efficiency. I can tell you it’s pretty accurate – if I wake up feeling tired and dragging, I can look at my Fitbit sleep tracker and see why.
- Syncs wirelessly to Macs and PCs. For the Fitbit One, you have a Dongle that plugs into the USB port of your computer and syncs you’re information when you’re within 20 feet of it. You also now have the Fitbit Connect app installed on your computer where you can manually sync, set up a device, check for upgrades and troubleshoot.
- Rechargeable Battery. Your Fitbit One battery will last a minimum of 5-7 days between charging. I plug mine in once or twice a week when I’m sitting at my computer and not moving around much – 10-15 minutes is all I need to get my battery back up, and I’ve never had an issue with the battery dying on me.
- Free online and mobile tools. After your initial purchase of the Fitbit One ($99.95 + shipping), everything is absolutely free. Besides having a beautiful user interface, the Fitbit online site and mobile app are simple to work with and provide a lot of information in one glance. You can set goals, track your progress, and you can connect your account to My Fitness Pal (also free) for very easy food tracking on your computer and smartphone.
- Fitbit Tracker and Silicone & Metal Clip Case. (top left) The Fitbit One is considerably smaller than the Ultra and goes into a silicone & metal clip case that you attach to your clothes (protecting its connectors from water and sweat). It is taken out of the case and slid into the Sleep Wrist Band at night (top right) through the slit you see at the top. It sits inside a nice little mesh pouch so you can still see the information on the device. I was unsure about it at first since I was used to the Ultra clipping onto the wristband (one side in, one side out) but this option is so much more compact.
- Wireless USB Dongle. (top middle) The little dongle plugs into your computer’s USB and uploads the information from your Fitbit One when you are within 20 feet. I absolutely love how small it is, especially when I’m plugging it into my laptop’s side USB port.
- Charging Cord. (bottom) To charge your Fitbit One, you take it out of the silicone & metal clip case and plug it into the charging cord, which connects to your computer’s USB port. The battery indicator displays on the Fitbit as it charges.
Why Not the Fitbit Zip?
The Fitbit Zip is only $59.95, which may be a better option for some people. The reason why I’m not a fan of it is because it doesn’t include the sleep tracker, doesn’t record floors climbed, doesn’t have a silent alarm (which is one of my favorite new features of the Fitbit One) and it requires a watch battery. That’s not a big deal for a lot of people, but I say pay the additional $40.00 and get so much more out of your tracker. I have no experience with it so I’m not knocking it all, though…different people have different preferences.
*Fitbit photos courtesy of Fitbit.com.