A fitness tracker is the perfect way to monitor your activity and health effortlessly and with unmatched accuracy. Think of it as an electronic finger on the pulse, constantly measuring your vitals, quality of sleep and step count.
Today’s fitness band market is stuffed with fantastic devices, most of which can do a pretty good job at the basics of tracking. But frankly, we’re only interested in the best, and you should be too.
This guide will show you the best of the best activity trackers money can buy and show you how each ranks in terms of stand-out features, specs, price, design, the quality of the software you’ll be using on your phone and much more.
1. Moov Now
Our favorite fitness tracker right now
Screen: No | Heart rate tracker: No | Waterproof: Yes | Activity tracking: Yes | GPS: Yes, through phone | Battery life: Six months | Compatibility: Android/iOS
Great battery life
The Moov Now is officially our favorite fitness band in the world right now. It’s cheap, offers everything you’ll want in an everyday tracker and there’s a phenomenal six month long battery life.
The Moov Now isn’t just designed for step tracking though – it comes with boxing and rep-based training, as well as a swimming mode on top of run coaching and sleep monitoring features. That’s a lot to get stuck in with.
You won’t get GPS or some of the more complex fitness tracking features that others on this list offer, but if you’re looking for a great everyday tracker that doesn’t cost a lot of money the Moov Now will suit you perfectly.
Read the full Moov Now review
2. Fitbit Charge 3
Take charge of your fitness
Screen: Yes | Heart rate tracker: Yes | Waterproof: Yes | Activity tracking: Yes | GPS: No | Battery life: Six days | Compatibility: Android/iOS
No onboard GPS
Not a color screen
More refined than the Fitbit Charge 2, the Charge 3 is Fitbit’s newest device and has a more lightweight design that looks better on your wrist. It’s also one of our favorite Fitbit products money can buy right now.
The display is bigger and clearer than a lot of other fitness trackers on this list, but it’s still a black and white screen.
There’s no onboard GPS, like some other trackers on this list have, but it’s waterproof and offers a full fitness suite including a heart rate tracker. You can track GPS by pairing your phone with the tracker too.
You have to spend a bit extra on this than other fitness trackers you can buy in this same list, but if you enjoy the whole Fitbit app and experience and would also like access to notifications and Fitbit’s fantastic sleep tracking, you’ll want to opt for this as it’s one of the company’s best trackers ever.
Read our Fitbit Charge 3 review
What’s next? We don’t expect to hear about it soon, but we’ve brainstormed what we’d like to see come to a Fitbit Charge 4.
3. Garmin Vivosmart 4
It tells you how much energy you do (or don’t) have
Screen: Yes | Heart rate tracker: Yes | Waterproof: Yes | Activity tracking: Yes | GPS: No | Battery life: 7 days | Compatibility: Android/iOS
Our highest ranked Garmin product in the best fitness tracker list is also one of the most accomplished in its range of health bands.
This device isn’t made for serious athletes like a variety of other products from the Garmin brand, but instead this is for those who want to be able to track the odd bit of exercise and have an attractive band to do it.
The screen is bigger on this version than other Garmin products, and it has a battery that should last you around a week depending on how much exercise you’ll be doing.
There’s also an innovative feature called body battery that helps you learn when exactly is the best time to exercise depending on how much energy you have. This is great for those who are just as interested in their recovery and general wellbeing as they are clocking up the miles.
Read the full Garmin Vivosmart 4 review
4. Huawei Band 2 Pro
A slim, capable wearable with impressive battery life
Screen: Yes | Heart rate tracker: Yes | Waterproof: Yes | Activity tracking: Yes | GPS: Yes | Battery life: 21 days standby | Compatibility: Android/iOS
Accurate step counting
Lacks innovative design
In fourth place is the Huawei Band 2 Pro. a sleek little fitness tracker that manages to pack a decent amount of features into its diminutive frame, and for an impressively small amount of money.
The Band 2 Pro has heart rate monitoring, VO2 max, GPS, step and sleep tracking and a seriously impressive battery life. The slim screen means that this tracker will work just as well with running gear as it will with a business suit, although the slim screen isn’t going to be as easy to read as some of the competition.
If you’re looking for a device that’s going to give you totally precise metrics, this isn’t it. But if you want an affordable entry-level device for your first foray into the world of fitness tracking, this is a great place to start.
Read our Huawei Band 2 Pro review
What’s next? The company has now announced the Huawei Band 3 Pro, but we’ve yet to be able to review it properly. We hope to have one to test in the next few months.
5. Samsung Gear Fit 2 Pro
Samsung comes in a close second place
Screen: Yes, 1.5-inch AMOLED | Heart rate tracker: Yes | Waterproof: Yes | Activity tracking: Yes | GPS: Yes, through phone | Battery life: 3 days | Compatibility: Android/iOS
Offline Spotify support
Clumsy setup processor
Expensive for fitness tracker
The Gear Fit 2 Pro has a gorgeous design that looks fantastic on your wrist and as it’s sporting a big, beautiful AMOLED display you’ll be able to see all of your stats nice and clearly.
It also comes with GPS built-in so you can leave your phone at home while you go for a run as well as a top-notch heart rate sensor that should give you one of the most accurate readings possible from a wrist based tracker. Plus it will track your swimming too.
Read the full Samsung Gear Fit 2 Pro review
6. Garmin Vivosmart 3
Garmin drops GPS but comes in at third place
Screen: Yes, Monochrome | Heart rate tracker: Yes | Waterproof: Water-resistant | Activity tracking: Yes | GPS: Yes | Battery life: 6 days | Compatibility: Android/iOS
Six day battery life
GPS and heart rate monitor
Design is lacking
Data could have more depth
In sixth place is the Garmin Vivosmart 3, which is on the more expensive side of the fitness trackers listed but offers almost everything you’ll want from an exercise tracker.
With a six-day long battery life, a heart rate monitor and fitness age feature, this is a device created more for gym-goers than runners.
The Vivosmart HR+, the device Garmin released before this tracker, came with GPS built-in but this newer version has dropped the feature and it’s a big shame for anyone who wanted to take this watch running.
Even so, you should definitely consider the Garmin Vivosmart 3, especially if you’re looking for a band that can do high-end fitness tracking with an almost week long battery.
Read the full Garmin Vivosmart 3 review
7. Polar M430
A running watch with all-round fitness skills
Screen: Yes, Monochrome | Heart rate tracker: Yes | Waterproof: Yes | Activity tracking: Yes | GPS: Yes | Battery life: 20 days | Compatibility: Android/iOS
Good battery life
Reliable and accurate
Not the best looking
Annoying charging lead
The Polar M430 has a lot of things going for it, including GPS, a heart rate monitor and sleep tracking skills, along with good battery life. For the most part it’s also reliable and accurate, which is something not all fitness trackers can claim.
The M430 is designed primarily for runners, and can monitor the likes of your pace, distance, speed and cadence, but with all of the above, plus daily general activity tracking, it’s a strong choice for tracking most kinds of exercise and activity.
Given all the tech packed in, the Polar M430 also has a reasonable price tag. It’s not the best-looking fitness tracker, but it’s comfortable and functional.
Read the full Polar M430 review
8. Garmin Vivosport
The first tracker in this list from Garmin
Screen: Yes, color touchscreen | Heart rate tracker: Yes | Waterproof: Water-resistant | Activity tracking: Yes | GPS: Yes | Battery life: 7 days | Compatibility: Android/iOS
Small for GPS tracker
Good battery life
No swim modes
It’s not as stylish as most of the Fitbit products, but the reason the Garmin Vivosport appears in this list before products from the latter company.
This is cheaper than most Fitbit products but it comes with GPS built-in and offers a solid seven days battery life from a single charge.
Although it’s waterproof, it wont’ track your swimming easily but the Vivosport excels for other kinds of workouts and is great for tracking your jogging and cycling.
Read our full Garmin Vivosport review
9. Fitbit Blaze
A solid wearable, but it won’t set the world alight
Screen: Yes | Heart rate tracker: Yes | Waterproof: No | Activity tracking: Yes | GPS: Connected GPS through phone | Battery life: 5 days | Compatibility: Android/iOS/Windows
Stunning battery life
Interesting fitness features
Lacking in notifications
Strange design won’t suit everyone
Want a fitness tracker that looks more like a watch? You’ll likely like the look of the Fitbit Blaze – it’s one of the best fitness watches on the planet.
The first tracking watch from Fitbit is a strange looking device, but suits a lot of people and comes with automatic fitness tracking features that make it possible to just jump into an exercise and wait for the results to roll in right away.
With good battery life and a plethora of extra features compared to most other Fitbit devices, this may be the best tracker for you.
Read the full Fitbit Blaze review