Report: Fitbit to launch two new devices, one with heart rate tracking

By Aditi Pai
07:10 am
Fitbit Force Fitbit Force

Details and images of two upcoming Fitbit activity tracker devices, called Charge and Charge HR, have leaked, according to a report from Gizmodo.

Fitbit first mentioned their new generation of devices in February when they voluntarily recalled the Fitbit Force after just less than 2 percent of Force owners complained of somewhat mysterious bouts of skin irritation, usually occurring a number of weeks after they began wearing the tracker.

According to the leaked promotional materials, the new devices will track everything the Force tracked: steps, distance, calories burned, floors climbed, and sleep. Both devices will also offer a silent alarm to wake the user in the morning and their displays will show the user's stats. One new feature, though, is that the Charge HR will also track heart rate.

Very few wristworn activity trackers currently sense heart rate. Earlier this summer, Boston-based startup Whoop raised $6 million to build a wristworn activity tracker that measures heart rate continuously. Then in September, Apple unveiled its Apple Watch, which will will track movement through a built-in accelerometer and heart rate through optical sensors.

And most recently, Basis, which has been tracking heart rate from the wrist for several years now, but only while at rest, launched a new device, called Basis Peak, that offers heart rate tracking even when a user is working out.

Fitbit's Charge and Charge HR are expected to cost $185 and $220, respectively, according to Gizmodo, which puts the devices' price tags between the Apple Watch, which is expected to retail for $349 and Basis Peak which will cost $199.

Recently, Fitbit made news when it said it does not currently have plans to integrate with Apple's HealthKit platform, which integrates data from third party apps and devices. If the leaks about Fitbit's Charge HR turns out to be true, that device matches the Apple Watch's health sensing features.


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