Fitbit Alta, analysis: the leading activity bracelet is reinforced with more design and the best application
Among the vast offer of activity measuring bracelets, Fitbit has models in almost every option you can think of. After the most complete Fitbit Blaze, its commitment to remain number one in the most basic models is called Fitbit Alta.
This new model disposes of advanced functions such as heart rate measurement or GPS to focus on the essentials of a quantification bracelet: precise measurement of our activities, comfort of use and autonomy. In the analysis of the Fitbit Alta that we have already done in Xataka we tell you how it has been using it for several weeks, we review the news at the software / app level as well as the technology that make it one of the best options within its range in today.
Fitbit Alta: how to wear nothing
I already told you in the recent shopping guide on quantifying bracelets: if counting steps, sleep and calories is enough, the main thing in a quantifying bracelet is that it is comfortable to wear. Forget that you are wearing it.
That premise is perfectly fulfilled by the new Fitbit Alta. This model comes standard with a flexible and very nice plastic band, smooth on the bottom and embossed on the outside but without being a problem in keeping it fairly clean. These bands can be easily removed by means of a click type which seems very robust to me.The bracelet exchange system allows the Fitbit Alta to expand the number of potential users, with colored plastic, metal and leather straps, but at a fairly high price.
The closure system of the bracelet is by pressure, and a priori there should be no problems of accidental opening. In the three weeks we have used the Fitbit Alta daily, even with jackets, we have not felt that we could lose it due to an unwanted opening. Since you will not take it off often, it seems to us a balanced system.
Fitbit Alta's more casual and sporty look with the plastic strap, aptly available in various colors (key to attracting the consumer), can be complemented by models with a leather or metal finish. The colored plastic models are priced at 30 euros while going to leather or metal goes up quite a bit: 70 and 100 euros respectively.
In our case we have been able to test both options and in all cases they seem to us to be the most comfortable models that we have been able to wear. You really forget that you have something on your wrist and with its closure system and three sizes of bands, you will not feel that it does not fit your wrist.
The only drawback at the design level that would put the Fitbit Alta has to do with water resistance. The company indicates that it can withstand splashes, sweat or rain, but nothing to be able to go to the pool with it. Showering with it is also not recommended (Fitbit argues that it is better this way to keep the skin under the bracelet dry), so there are already daily situations in which you should remove it. I would have preferred that this water resistance, even if it had been only three meters, was on its specification sheet.The great design-level values of the Fitbit Alta are the interchangeable straps and you do not notice that you are wearing it. Add one of the best autonomies in its category and you have a more than right choice
The second pillar of the Fitbit Alta in terms of comfort of use in quantification is in the battery. Fitbit has always been able to boast excellent and faithful data in this regard and with the new Alta it does so again. In the official figures Fitbit puts five days of autonomy, a fact that in our case falls even short: we have managed up to seven days without having to think about charging the Fitbit Alta.
What of the use of proprietary chargers in another sing. The one of the Alta is one with a clamp format, easy to place although not direct (sometimes the connectors seemed to be well hooked but they were not). The charging time is one hour, an excellent figure for this type of device.
A screen to look and touch little
Despite the compact design of the Fitbit Alta, this bracelet has an OLED-type screen. It is landscape but we can configure the data to show it vertically or horizontally.
The visibility of the screen is very fair outdoors. Its operation makes it always off and on in certain situations, which given its size and possibilities of displaying data, seems to us the best decision because it allows us to stretch the autonomy of the Fitbit Alta quite a bit.
In theory, it has touch technology so that with a touch you can activate it and know the time or quantification data. But in practice it is something that you will not want to use because its operation leaves a lot to be desired. Rarely do you manage to activate the screen at the first touch, and there is no question of touching it with more or less force. We have tried in every way possible but usually just ended up activating after several taps. And never the same number.
That same system of taps on the screen is used to go through the data that is displayed, so nothing to slide on it. Once activated, the touch works better than from the off state, but it also doesn't seem as fine-tuned as we would like.
What does work well is the activation of the screen by twisting the wrist. The Fitbit Alta detects quite well when you make the gesture of looking at the screen and activates it, so it is quite useful as a clock, with the default time and date.The screen of the Fitbit Alta gives us scope to look at the time and some sporadic data from our quantifications, but the touch technology does not work and it is better to opt for the twist of the wrist to activate the screen
The usefulness of the screen beyond knowing the time or reviewing the alarm time that we have activated (silent vibrating alarms are the best ideas of this type of bracelets) and steps taken is not much. The Fitbit Alta supports receiving call and message notifications, but they are only vibrating alerts and as soon as the text of a message passes through the screen and that's it.
On the screen, with the news that has arrived in the latest version of its application, we can receive notices to move, something curious and motivating. The goal is to reach at least 250 steps per hour.
Software and app that keep improving
Fitbit makes very good quantifying devices, it is the industry leader by far, but if you had to choose just one reason to prefer your models to others right now, it would undoubtedly be the software and applications.
The appearance of the application has not changed much, but interesting new features are being added that complete the community, the challenges and the statistics. The most relevant is the one that detects activities that we carry out without having to tell you anything. He does it quite correctly with hiking, racing and cycling.
See complete gallery »Fitbit interface (17 photos)
The configuration must be fine-tuned correctly in the options because if not, by default if we make a departure from home of more than 15 minutes walking, it will be taken as exercise. And when it comes to following up, we don't fit in with other outings that are for exercising.
As for the data that the Fitbit Alta may or may not collect, there is no heart rate since it does not have an integrated reader, but there is no measurement of climbed plants either. The absence of an altimeter seems to me a mistake because it is one of the main motivations for non-sports consumers who want to quantify themselves, and Fitbit, by means of badges, has it very well implemented.
With the Fitbit Alta we have fairly accurate measurements of steps, distance, calories burned and minutes of activity. It also includes quantification of sleep, something that it does automatically and correctly, although we would like you to go deeper into how we sleep. It detects even naps without problem if you are one of those who dedicates more than 15 minutes.
The latest novelty related to sleep is a kind of program in which we set a daily sleep goal and we can create both reminders to go to bed and silent alarms to get up.
Despite this, Fitbit, in the face of competition from giants such as Apple or Samsung, has improvements to include mainly in the field of purer health and not so much in exercise. It is not the case of this model that does not have a pulsation meter, but we leave it there for you to take note.
With a strong presence in the business and healthcare market, Fitbit has recently renewed its more complete ranges with equipment closer to sports watches than to quantifiers, but also with this Alta model, reinforcing a segment with more and more competition in price and models. .
Maintaining a very comfortable design and now powered on the fashion and accessories side, the Fitbit Alta concentrates its value not on the price but on its autonomy and a complete application, with the largest community in quantification and continuous improvements.