A good wearable product is one that you wear but does not alter the way you live life. I have reviewed a lot of tech consumer products and most of them adds to your way of life such that you are “forced” to adjust your routine to fit into them. For smartphones, they are bulky and you have to be mindful that you do not lose them. For earbuds, you cannot keep wearing them on your ears all the time. For Fitbit Inspire 3, I always forget that I’m wearing it. Unlike other wearables, I do not have the urge to remove it at every opportunity, thanks to the comfortable silicone strap. This fitness tracker on my wrist quietly captures my bio data, stores them, analyses them, and presents the information through the smart app so that I learn a little more about my health.
And Fitbit does more than just that. Like many smart devices, Fitbit has developed an active community of users who share their fitness journey through the app so that others can get motivated. There are also contents like video workouts, mindfulness sessions, even food recipes to support your wellness journey.
As you can see, owning a Fitbit is not just to track your steps. It is also a membership to a health-conscious community.
Admittedly, I have not reviewed any fitness trackers in recent years. I am quite contented with my Samsung Gear S3, which is just a gadget with gorgeous watch faces and basic health tracking sensors. Before going to bed, I switch out to the Samsung Gear Fit2 Pro to track my sleep and to wake me up in the morning, and the reason for not wearing the Gear S3 is the size and the battery. It is a hassle, to be honest, but like any living creature, we adapt.
Now after wearing the Fitbit Inspire 3 for over 2 weeks, it has eliminated the odd routine of switching trackers, and even saved the hassle of frequent charging. There are also features that I like on the Inspire 3.
The Inspire 3 weighs just 17.7 grams. It’s so light, and the silicone strap is so comfortable, that I actually don’t feel that I am wearing anything. I only remove it when I bathe and for charging.
Charge Every 10 Days
The Inspire 3 can last for more than 10 days in a single charge! There is still about 20% remaining after 10 days but I went ahead to recharge instead of waiting till it reaches zero. Recharging also takes less than 2 hours.
The Inspire 3 does not have any physical click buttons, so how it works is that you need to touch both sensors at the sides of the tracker at the same time to activate. You can also tap the display to wake the screen, or raise the wrist to auto-wake. I use the double-touch gesture more for turning off the display or to go back to clock screen immediately after browsing the menu settings.
Having a tiny tracker during runs helps to remove distractions. The information is easy to read, and I just tap on screen to toggle the various stats on-screen, and swipe up to pause the session. During the session pause, swiping up will display all the stats so far, which is again a sensible design.
The Inspire 3 does not have built-in GPS, so it relies on your smartphone to capture the distance and route. Once the session completes, you can assess your result on the smartphone app.
When we sleep, we lose consciousness, we don’t know what is happening to our body. Wearing the Inspire 3 (or any fitness tracker) offers a glimpse to our sleep health. The app provides some useful guide on the various stages and awards a sleep score to help me understand if I have a good sleep.
Not only does it tracks sleep, it also captures breathing rate, skin temperature, resting heart rate.
Alarm and Gestures
I use the tracker as a morning alarm, I like the alarm vibration pattern and also the gestures to stop the alarm: swipe down to snooze, and swipe up and tap to turn off the alarm. There is an additional step to permanently stop the alarm to prevent accidental gesture when I am half-awake.
The screen size can be a challenge to see long notification messages, but it contains enough text for me to determine whether I should follow up with reading the full message on the smartphone or to ignore it. Moreover, the Inspire 3 is not replacing my smartphone, though many large smartwatches are promoting this advantage, the poor battery life is a deterrent to spend too much screen time to drain the precious energy.
The Fitbit Ecosystem
The Inspire 3 supports the usual features like tracking of heart rate, SpO2, exercise, sleep., What I appreciate is that Fitbit put some sense into the data so that it becomes a little more meaningful for the user. For instance, I get scores for sleeping, stress, cardio fitness, daily readiness, which I will then check against my actual experience. Do I feel as rested as the sleep score claims?
Through the Fitbit app, I can also check out videos for wellness, workouts, nutrition, as well as share my accomplishments through the community pages, read and get inspired by other users.
What’s Not To Like?
Life is not perfect, and so are products. The biggest drawback is, ironically, the display is too small, or should I say, it’s too narrow, so a lot of words are truncated or overflowed to next lines. However, kudos to the UI design that makes the display easy to read.
The other small thing is that there is no GPS, so I have to bring my smartphone to capture my running route. It also does not have smart pause feature when you are stationary, for instance, at the traffic light.
And then, there is a limited number of clock faces – 21 to be exact. And while there are quite a lot of designs to choose from, it can only display very little info. On other smartwatches, I can select a watch face that displays time, date, battery, steps, heart rate, altogether. But on the Inspire 3, there isn’t such a watch face available. I guess you would have to get the more expensive Fitbit smartwatches if you want more fanciful clocks.
The Fitbit Inspire 3 is a featherweight health and fitness tracker that I comfortably and willingly wear round the clock (except for bathing). It has encouraged me to be more aware of my health and to motivated me to be more physically active. It also works with Healthy 365, the Singapore national health program to earn Healthpoints and redeem rewards. At S$148, it is not the cheapest entry-level fitness tracker. There are many fitness trackers brands and models in the market, but none makes me feel the way I feel with Inspire 3, so comfortable that I do not remember wearing it.