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The Fitbit Surge Review

Quick Take

The Surge was Fitbit’s first foray into the world of the smartwatch and it was an instant success. It covers all bases in terms of fitness tracking such as steps and distance traveled and calories burned, as well as adding heart-rate monitoring into the mix. Most notable is the Surge’s GPS capabilities, giving users accurate, up-to-the minute stats and information. Yet we aren’t sure the design will cut it for all trainees, especially seasoned athletes. Find out more about the Surge below.

Pros

Built-in GPS
Continuous heart-rate tracking
Music Control

Cons

Quite bulky
No social media notifications
Not waterproof

What To Know About the Fitbit Surge

As well as covering all your standard fitness tracking bases, the Fitbit Surge features a range of performance features such as built-in GPS, continuous heart-rate monitoring, music control and an easy-to-use touchscreen display. You can sync your workout data automatically and wirelessly to various devices using Bluetooth (4.0 wireless technology).

Other Fitbit Surge Key Features and Specs:

  • GPS built in
  • PurePulse heart-rate feature for continuous tracking
  • All-day activity tracking
  • Multi-sport modes
  • SmartTrack feature for automatic exercise recognition
  • 7-day battery life
  • Smartphone notifications
  • Control music from your mobile playlists
  • Auto sleep tracking and silent alarms
  • Easy to use touchscreen
  • Wireless stats syncing

Design

An important design feature to note is that the Surge is not waterproof. It is sweat, rain and splashproof but you should not swim or shower with the Surge on. The band is made of a flexible elastomer material, and it has a surgical-grade stainless steel buckle so you don’t need to worry about it falling off even during intense workouts. It’s flexible and comfortable but also durable. That said, it is on the bulky side. If you want a slim tracker or watch, the Surge will not be the best Fitbit for you; the brand has other ultra-slim options if that’s what you prefer.

 

Sensors & Components

The Fitbit Surge features the following sensors and components:

  • Built-in GPS
  • 3-axis accelerometers
  • Digital compass
  • Optical heart rate monitor
  • Altimeter
  • Ambient light sensor
  • Vibration motor

As for the display, the Fitbit Surge features a monochrome LCD touchscreen which is backlit. This is useful for if you run or cycle in the evenings. You don’t need to worry about replacing the battery on the Surge. It features a rechargeable lithium-polymer battery which lasts up to a week. That said, the GPS battery life lasts up to 10 hours so it’s best to charge your Surge every few days or each day to ensure you are always tracking via GPS. As for connectivity, the Surge features Bluetooth 4.0.

 

Functionality

One of the Surge’s standout features is the built-in GPS. This allows you to see your distance, pace, split times and elevation on your wrist in real time without your smartphone. You can review your routes in the Fitbit app after each workout. Whether you’re climbing flights of stairs or walking down the street, the GPS will help you gain better insights into how your body reacts when you perform certain moves. This can help you realize what movements burn the most calories and which are providing you with little or no benefit.

 

Other Fitbit highlights the Surge features include PurePulse heart-rate monitoring. This continuous heart-rate monitoring 24/7 happens automatically thanks to the wrist sensors. This feature can help you to build a clearer picture of how physically fit you are, how efficient your workout is and where you need to improve. You can use the simplified heart-rate zones (which the watch displays next to the pulse reading) to ensure you are getting the most out of your workouts. This way, you no longer have to think about whether you’re exercising at your peak level because the Surge will tell you. Then there is the multi-sport functionality. With this feature, you can track your different workouts such as running, biking or weights and get real-time stats on your watch. Just head to your app to check out your post-workout summaries in more detail after workouts. Being able to distinguish whether you are walking or cycling can make a big difference to your daily calculations. Programming the proper activity also allows the device to give you workout tips and show your overall progress in each individual sport.

 

You can keep on top of your calls when you’re on the go too. The Surge alerts you of any incoming text messages and calls, and you can also control your music playlists from your wrist. Another notable feature is the sleep tracking component. The Surge features silent alarms and automatic sleep tracking. It’s fitted with a vibration function to quietly wake you without disrupting anyone else in your home. It also automatically monitors and records your sleep patterns, telling you how long and how deeply you sleep for, so you’ll know if you need more rest.

 

Verdict

As well as built-in GPS, the Surge is jam-packed with features that can help you keep tabs on your overall health and wellness, from sleep tracking to continuous heart-rate monitoring. Having this many features does also mean that it’s a pretty bulky, large watch. If you don’t mind the design, that’s OK, but if you’re looking for a non-intrusive, slimmer watch, the Surge isn’t for you. If this is the case, check out Fitbit‘s other models. Another qualm we have is that the Surge is not waterproof. Yes it is splash and sweatproof, but this isn’t much use if you’re caught out in a storm on a run. For (mainly) indoor, day-to-day activity tracking from your workplace to the grocery store to your yoga studio, the Surge won’t disappoint. Seasoned athletes should probably opt for a waterproof option.

Rating: 85%

Specifications

Product Type

Smartwatches

Brand/Model Series

Fitbit Surge

Overall Rating

85 %

Type Of Display

Monochrome LCD Touchscreen

Accelerometer

Yes

Sleep Tracking

Yes

Steps Tracking

Yes

Calories Tracking

Yes

Downloadable Apps

No

Bluetooth Enabled

Yes

Heart Rate Monitor

Yes

Water Resistance Rating

Sweat, rain and splashproof only

Battery Type

Rechargeable Lithium-polymer

Max Battery Life

168 hrs

What is included in the box?

Tracker, Charging cable, Wireless sync dongle

GPS

Yes

On-board music storage

No

NFC Touchless Payment

No

View Full Specifications
 
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