During the past several years, fitness trackers have become an increasingly common piece of athletic gear. Though not all of these products are the same, the best fitness trackers allow you to monitor your daily activity and record your progress toward key personal wellness goals.
Since the very beginning of the personal fitness tracker, Fitbit has been a leading name. Fitbit has made a number of worthwhile products. The Fitbit Charge 5, in many ways, is what makes this brand iconic.
We put it through its paces to determine all of its strengths and limitations. Here's a comprehensive Fitbit Charge 5 review, via the ACTIVE Reviews Team.
By clicking on the product links in this article, we may receive a commission fee at no cost to you, the reader. Read full affiliate disclosure here.
Why Trust Us?
ACTIVE.com's editorial team relies on the knowledge and experience of fitness and wellness experts including competitive athletes, coaches, physical therapists, nutritionists, and certified trainers. This helps us ensure the products we feature are of the highest standard. Collectively, the team has spent countless hours researching equipment, gear, and recovery tools in order to create the most accurate, authentic content for our readers. Customer satisfaction is also a key part of our review process, which is why we only feature products that are highly rated.
A Quick Look at the Fitbit Charge 5
- Waterproof rating: Up to 50m
- Battery life: 7 days
- Display: 1.04" touchscreen
- Connectivity: Text, call, and app notifications; Bluetooth connectivity; no Alexa or Google Assistant
You may not realize it, but Fitbit is actually owned by Google. So it’s no surprise that the company offers truly advanced technology. What sets this fitness tracker apart is that it provides personal health tech at a relatively modest price point. It's one of the best values you'll find among personal fitness trackers.
We recommend the Fitbit Charge 5 to anyone who wants data-driven personal fitness insights, without a lofty price point.
What We Like
- Bright, readable screen
- The sleep tracking functions are excellent
- Provides alerts both for low and high heart rates
- GPS tracking is great for outdoor treks
- Battery lasts up to one full week
- Comfortable, secure fit
- Sleek, stylish design with three colors choices
- Swim proof
What We Don't Like
- For the best experience, you'll need to pay for an ongoing Fitbit Premium membership
- No altimeter or elevation tracking
- Screen is a bit smaller than other fitness trackers
- No real options for music playback controls
There are plenty of features included in the Fitbit Charge 5, but some of the best include:
- GPS tracking
- Time display
- Sleep monitor
- Heart rate monitor
- Daily Readiness Scores
- Stress Management Scores
- 6-month membership to Fitbit Premium (included)
Fitbit has been around long enough that they've mastered sleek, intuitive fitness watch design. This slim tracker has a responsive touchscreen face, protected by a layer of Corning® Gorilla® Glass 3. An infinity loop band keeps the watch secured to your wrist. Graphite/Black, White/Soft Gold, and Steel Blue/Platinum are the color choices.
Alternatives to Consider
As you weigh your options for a personal fitness tracker, there are a couple of alternatives to consider. You may want to look at some more expensive watches from within the Fitbit product line.
For example, there’s the Fitbit Versa 3. It costs at least $100 more than the Fitbit Charge 5, but you'll get a few extra features. The Versa will provide you with voice assistance, something the Charge doesn't offer. You'll also get access to some music controls. It’s compatible with Spotify, Deezer, and Pandora. But the Versa has a slightly lower battery life than the Charge, six days not seven.
You could also invest in the Fitbit Sense. t It offers many of the same features as the Versa and comes with more powerful and sensitive sensors. Fitbit Sense costs more than $300 and has a six-day battery life.
If swimming is your preferred way to work out, then you're in luck. The Fitbit Charge 5 is waterproof for up to 50 meters, which means it's more than ready for the pool. Even if you're not a swimmer, that waterproofing will protect your Fitbit if you're caught in the rain on a run.
The last thing you want is a fitness watch that runs out of juice in the middle of your workout or needs constant recharging. The Fitbit Charge 5 offers a battery life of up to one full week. This is better than many of its competitors, including pricier Fitbit trackers. Know that the battery lasts longest when you're not using the GPS features.
The touchscreen display is bright, vivid, and easy to read. You won't have any trouble seeing your fitness stats or making adjustments to your settings, even mid-sprint. The range of customizable watch faces is nice, too.
Depending on your preferred color, you should be able to find your Fitbit for as little as $116. This makes it the most modestly priced option in the Fitbit family, but for all the features you get, we think it's a pretty good overall value.
Some possible drawbacks to the Charge are that you don't have access to a personal assistant, like Alexa, and music options are limited. But you'll at least be able to get text, call, and app alerts. The inclusion of GPS tracking is really what's more important, especially if you run, hike, or bike.
FAQs About the Fitbit Charge 5
Is the Fitbit Charge 5 worth buying?
Given the modest price point and the robust set of features, we think the Fitbit Charge 5 is well worth purchasing. We'd only recommend shopping for higher-priced options if you really need something with advanced music playback and/or voice assistance. Be aware that, if you do go with a Fitbit, you'll likely want to pay for a Premium membership to unlock the best features.
Is the Fitbit Charge 5 accurate?
While most wearables can be a little imprecise, especially in the first few minutes of tracking, the Fitbit Charge 5 is overall fairly accurate. For most fitness buffs, it'll be close enough.
Is the Fitbit Charge 5 accurate for calories burned?
In terms of accuracy, calories burned is one of the Charge 5's best metrics. It's very accurate and is a marked improvement over the Fitbit Charge 4.
Does the Fitbit Charge 5 have a GPS?
Yes, the Fitbit Charge 5 has a built-in GPS, which is one of its most significant features. It puts it a notch or two above other fitness trackers in the same price range.