Move Over Fitbit the Apple Watch Sport Is in Town

by Editorial Team December 6th, 2016 | Health News
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apple-watchImage via Flickr by William Hook

Are you in the market for a smart watch? If you’re mostly interested in fitness tracking, you might be tempted to try the Fitbit Surge or Blaze, but for most users the stylish Apple Watch Sport from T-Mobile is well worth the extra cost. With 18 hours of battery life and light-weight 1.06 ounce body, it’s convenient and fits easily into your day to day life. Plus, with a reliable network like T-Mobile’s, you can easily pair it with your iPhone and stay connected all day long. Activity tracking is at the core of the Fitbit devices, of course, which have evolved by tacking extra features onto a set of fitness-related functions. Apple designed the Apple Watch specifically as a companion for the iPhone, so you can enjoy the freedom of leaving your phone in your pocket or purse for long periods of time.

Fitness Apps
Apple has packed two fitness-related apps into the Apple Watch. Activity monitors your movement, health, wellness, and daily routine. The Workout App tracks your exercise. The Apple Health app on your iPhone collects all this data. While the Fitbit watches are compatible with iPhones, they don’t integrate with the Apple Health app. Apple Watch can also run other fitness apps, like Pocket Yoga, Map My Run, and Runtastic Pro. Fitbit devices are compatible with many apps but can’t actually run software on their own.

Movement Motivation
Apple Watch Sport includes some serious tools to keep you moving right on the watch face. The screen displays three colorful rings, which light up to help you track your progress through the day. One ring shows calories burned, one shows minutes of brisk activity, and one shows how long you’ve been standing versus sitting. The exercise ring uses your heart rate and GPS data to measure your exercise, and it will learn your habits and keep pushing you to exert yourself as you become more fit. Instead of just counting steps, the Apple Watch wants to see you get your heart rate into the target zone. The watch will also ping you if you’ve stood or sat in one place too long.

Heart Rate Accuracy
Apple Watch Sport and both Fitbit watches all have built-in heart rate monitors. The Apple Watch checks your heart rate every 10 minutes throughout the day and monitors your vital signs continuously during workouts. Testers at U.S. Consumer Reports were very impressed with the accuracy of the Apple Watch’s monitor. They tested the Apple Watch extensively against their highest-rated heart rate monitor and found “no significant differences” between the two.

Fashion Forward Features
Apple Watch offers a selection of popular band designs, and it is introducing new ones all the time, including its newest line made of woven nylon and more colors specifically for the Apple Watch Sport. There are more than 35 possible combinations of Apple watches, sizes, and straps, and customizable faces as well. The design of the watch itself, and the opportunity to tailor its appearance to meet your needs, make the Apple Watch a desirable fashion accessory, while the stark and simple Fitbit watches suffer by comparison.

Full Range of Apps
The Fitbit Surge, Charge, and Blaze all offer a few features, such as caller ID, text notifications, and music controls, that can communicate with your phone, but they are still essentially fitness trackers on bands. The Apple Watch, however, is so much more. The device has a microphone and a speaker, so you can give the Apple Watch voice commands, dictate text, send audio messages, and chat via walkie-talkie mode. The Apple Watch also gives you access to your calendar, weather, Apple Maps, and works with your phone to control the camera remotely for superior selfies.

Room to Grow
Perhaps the biggest advantage the Apple Watch has over a fitness device is its ability to run apps independently. New apps are constantly becoming available for the Apple Watch. Already you can use the device to order an Uber, check Twitter, or even turn on the lights as you pull into the driveway if you have an internet-enabled home. The future is restricted only by the imagination of app developers.

The Apple Watch is slightly more expensive than the Fitbit Surge or Blaze, but its broad range of capabilities, stylish appearance, and endless potential make it well worth an extra investment.

Brought to you by our friends at t-mobile.com.

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