Updated 12 Oct 2016

Fitbit

Surge

Snapshot: The Fitbit Surge fitness tracker comes with a heart rate monitor and has a webpage tracker.

Surge
Consumer score
SCORE
Avg price

$470

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Test results

Overall score
83
Ease of use
?/10
Comfort
?/10
Pedometer accuracy
?/10
Distance accuracy
?/10
Resting heart rate accuracy
?/10

Good points

  • Very easy to use.
  • Comfortable.
  • Excellent pedometer accuracy.
  • Excellent distance accuracy.
  • Excellent resting heart rate accuracy.
  • Excellent active heart rate accuracy.
  • Has Bluetooth.
  • Has calorie counter.
  • Has step counter.
  • Has distance measurement.
  • Has heart rate monitor.
  • Is Android compatible.
  • Is iOS compatible.

But

  • Can't take it swimming.

Review

A fitness tracker in the shape of a watch. Sadly, an ugly, square, digital watch, with a monochromatic screen. Has GPS built in to track runs and determine speeds. Tracks exercise other than steps or running linking with another app, Strava. It can pull in text and call notifications from your phone, but you can’t reply to them.

How we test

Overall score includes:

Ease of use (30%): We test each fitness tracker on Android, iOS and Windows where available and score how easy it is to set up and wear, and to track on-the-go information via the band and its interfaces.

Comfort (35%): A panel of ten, split between five men and five women, try on each fitness tracker and assign them scores based on how easy they are to put on, adjust and wear. The trackers in the test are medium-sized, where applicable.

Pedometer accuracy (17.5%) and distance accuracy (17.5%): We measure paces and distance with a calibrated tracking tool, and then measure this against what the fitness tracker displays.

We also perform two tests on the heart monitors:

Resting heart rate: We measure the resting heart rate of five people using each of the fitness trackers and a medical grade heart monitor, the GE Healthcare Carescape V100. A score is then calculated based on the fitness tracker's accuracy.

Active heart rate: Athletes at the Sports Chamber at Sydney University exercise on a treadmill wearing one of the fitness trackers. A 12-lead ECG provides a real time reading of their heart rate, which is then compared to the readings of the fitness tracker. Readings of both are taken at 10 second intervals in the first minute, one minute intervals for five minutes, and then at 10 second intervals during the last minute of cooling down.

Key data

Model

Avg price
$470
Size tested
Large

More test results (/10)

Active heart rate accuracy
9.5

Specifications

Weight (g)
52
Claimed battery life
7 days (5 hours)
Band size (min/max, mm)
167 / 226

Features

Bluetooth
Webpage tracker
GPS
Android app
iOS app
Calories
Steps
Distance
Heart-rate monitor
Yes
Sleep tracker
Automatic
Food tracker
App, website
Session tracker
Free run, treadmill, lap run, hike, weights, elliptical, spinning, yoga, workout
Alarm
Altimeter
Yes
Milestones
Social media share
Waterproof claims
×

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