Fitbit Debuts Tracking Features for Charge HR and Surge

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Fitbit Inc. FIT updated its Surge and Charge HR fitness wearables, thereby making exercise tracking smarter and easier than ever. The new software update enables both the fitness trackers to record exercises like biking, hiking, running and sports automatically.

New Features

It launched a new SmartTrack feature with automatic exercise recognition and enhancements, that is, when wearing a Fitbit Charge HR fitness tracker or Fitbit Surge GPS watch, it automatically identifies exercises during workouts and records them to the Fitbit mobile app along with an exercise summary including information on time, calories burned and heart rate, thereby offering users praise for every active moment.

SmartTrack also recognizes a wide range of activities, including elliptical, outdoor biking, running, walking, and general categories of aerobic workouts (i.e., Zumba, cardio-kickboxing and other dance classes) and sports (i.e., tennis, basketball and soccer).

Users, depending on their choices, can pick the form of activities they want to be identified as exercise and fine-tune how long they must be active before an activity is recorded in the Fitbit app. By default, activities are automatically identified when users have been active for at least 15 minutes.

Fitbit also introduced Exercise Goals within the free Fitbit app to enable users to discover the routine that is ideal for them, and serve as an everyday force to achieve their personalized targets. The Exercise Goals are available for free to all Fitbit device and app users.

Moreover, Fitbit updates its proprietary PurePulse heart rate technology, which will now offer users an enhanced heart rate monitoring experience through and after high-intensity workouts like boot camp and Zumba. The update is triggered while using Exercise Mode on Fitbit Charge HR and multi-sport modes on Fitbit Surge.

The SmartTrack and PurePulse software updates are available for free to all Fitbit Charge HR and Fitbit Surge users worldwide.


Fitbit enjoys a leading market position and is a global brand for wearable activity tracking devices.

It, however, faces competition in both the high and low end product range. On the high-end front, it competes with the Apple AAPL Watch, which starts at $349. Also, many big manufacturers are developing connected devices on Google's Android operating system. On the lower end, fitness-tracking devices from Jawbone, Garmin Ltd GRMN and Xiaomi also pose tough competition.

Last week, watch manufacturer Fossil Group FOSL entered into the wearables space with the acquisition of Misfit.

Competition is on the rise and it might compel Fitbit to slash prices to maintain market share. This in turn can take a toll on its margins.

Thus, Fitbit needs to introduce innovative features to make its products more compelling to keep the competition at bay, leave alone to stay ahead of its competitors.

Fitbit currently has a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). 

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This article appears in: Business , Investing , Stocks
Referenced Symbols: GRMN , AAPL , FOSL , FIT

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