Short Term Review – Fitbit Blaze, June 2017
There are a lot of reviews for the Fitbit Blaze online. You could totally go read one of those but I wouldn’t recommend it. Why? Well, it’s not only because my review is amazing as I’ve done independent research on the fitness lifestyle of unicorns; it’s also because I’m a real person using this thing for real. I am not borrowing it from the company to test and give back.
So, I got the Fitbit Blaze from Best Buy. When you go in to purchase one there is a wrist sizer on the counter. I’m not sure why Fitbit laid out two flat size testers rather than an actual band but it ended up working.
The previous Fitbit I owned came in Small, Large, and Extra Large. I’m not sure why they skipped medium and went with extra large because we all know that’s what it is: Small, Medium, Large. You aren’t fooling us Fitbit. Maybe they’re just trying out what Starbuck’s did with their decision to name sizes ridiculous things. I still order small, medium or large. #rebel
The first thing I did when I got to the car with my beautiful box housing my plum Fitbit was open it to be sure it fit since I went for the small. It fit nicely and looked so pretty. It’s so stylish compared to the other thin snappy bracelets from previous tracker versions.
I don’t know what you call the piece on the band that holds the extra flap of the strap down but that thingamabob has a little nub inside of it so it fits into a notch on the band. It’s a good feature but because I had no way of knowing I tugged and tugged to get into the strap until I realized what was going on.
What’s in the box?
When you open your box you’ll find two cutely wrapped up boxes. One has a 400 page booklet that has one page of consumer info and it’s repeated in 500 languages.
Also, I may have been exaggerating about the 400 pages. And the 500 languages.
The other tiny party favor that comes out is a little wrapped up paper that tells me to log into my Fitbit app to do the setup. Actually what it said was go to fitbit.com/setup. When you go there it then tells you to download the app on your device. This advice is a little clunky because I already had the app on my device but I wanted to know how to setup my Fitbit not download the app.
The only other thing you get in the box besides the fitness tracker is a very interesting take on the charger. It’s a square piece that opens like a flip top container. I knew the idea was to somehow get the tracker out of the watch band and put it in there. Since there were no instructions with it I Googled “how to charge Fitbit Blaze”. I could see that it needed to come out but I didn’t know how to remove it and I surely didn’t want to break it. All the images I saw were of the tracker already in the charger. I finally figured out that it has to be popped out by pushing from the front to back.
In order to charge it you just put it into the square holder and plug it into either a PC or a low voltage power block. If you look closely at the charger you will see a small button to push that will pop open the charger cube. There are a few prongs in the back that have to match up with the tracker when you place it inside.
My Blaze (pronounced Blah-Zayyy) needed a good charge because it was almost dead when I bought it. I was able to set everything up while it was charging. I ran updates from the app and then setup notifications. I am amazed at how many different apps I can choose to be notified by and how they worked with my device – something Google added with Android 4.3 Jelly Bean. I really didn’t think Fitbit had progressed this much. I understand they are read only but it’s still pretty amazing. Everything from Hangouts to Facebook was in that list to choose from.
Setup and ready to get my steps on!!
After A Few Weeks Of Use
Right off the bat I want to just let you know I love this thing. It is amazing how this tracker motivates me to move more. I’m not sure why keeping record of progress makes such a difference but it does.
When I woke up the morning after I got it I was so happy to be using the “silent alarm” feature. It’s such a gentle way to wake up with a vibration on your wrist rather than a blaring alarm. The tracker keeps up with how long you slept as well as what type of sleep you had (deep, light, REM).
After the first day I turned messaging notifications off. I really wanted to only be notified on the tracker when I needed to get up and move. I didn’t want to get used to the vibration on my wrist, I wanted those alerts to mean something. I do, however, turn the notifications back on before a workout. I like to be able to be free of my phone while I am working out but I don’t like to be unreachable especially for my kids. The notifications are so easy to turn on and off this really doesn’t take any effort at all.
Fitbit has done something really cool with the quick choices on the tracker. You have the choice of Today (which gives you your current stats), Exercise (you choose your top few exercise types to track so you can easily start your workout from your wrist), Fitstar (guided workouts that use your bodyweight only – no equipment), Relax (personalized guided breathing sessions), Timer, Alarms, and finally Settings. I was disappointed that my favorite exercise, Zumba, was not in the list for me to choose from as a favorite. I went to class wearing the tracker and as soon as I was done the Blaze told me it detected my exercise and noted it in my log. I was impressed!
I don’t use many of the other features on the Fitbit itself. I find that I’m mostly using the app because this is where you log your food, water and goals. I will have to say that it would be a nice feature to be able to just tap a water entry from the Blaze instead of opening the app just to tap “water” and close it.
There are a lot of features that I’ve never really used. The Blaze will allow you to control your music playlist from the OLED touchscreen. I’ve set this up but haven’t really used it. There are several different watch faces to choose from with varying information. The only quirk I’ve found with it is that it will, at random times, turn your notifications back on once you’ve turned them off. It’s only occasionally and I don’t know what’s causing it.
Overall, I’m very impressed with the Fitbit blaze. Not only does it look nice but it works really well! They’ve really nailed down some good features in this and for the current $249 retail price it’s a very good deal.
Now, if you’ve read this entire article waiting to hear about my independent research on the fitness lifestyle of unicorns it seems that I’ve run into a bit of a snag. I took them into Best Buy to use the sizing chart and things went haywire from there. I’ll have to make this a whole separate article. Stay tuned!