In a previous Fitbit Blaze Review, I praised this fitness tracker for almost all of its features. That same tracker just turned two years old now. And as a birthday present, I would like to review my time with it. So far everything has been very pleasant and satisfactory. My Fitbit Blaze has served me very well indeed.
Fitbit Blaze Review – 2 Years and Still Going Strong
Two years ago, I decided to look into getting the latest Apple Watch. Being an iPhone user, this was perfect. I think it was the Apple Watch Series 2 that was out at that time. This would be the perfect smartwatch for me. But before I made a jump deeper into the Apple Ecosystem, I did some research on the Apple Watch.
All Apple watch reviews are generally positive. This smartwatch is loaded with features and has a decent design. But these features along with the accompanying gestures are weird at best. This watch will have you behaving very weirdly and you will be constantly looking at your wrist. And talking to your hand!
This is not what I was looking for. Better yet, it was not something that I was ready for. That being said, I am pretty open-minded and willing to overlook these quirks. But the Apple Watch only works with a companion iPhone. And I wasn’t planning on sticking to iOS for long. So my challenge was to find a cross-platform watch that will work on my iPhone and on an Android smartphone that I would later on purchase.
Love at First Sight
Enter the Fitbit Blaze. The Blaze is well priced and was on sale at the time I purchased it. The further reduced price wasn’t the only winner, but the great reviews that came along with it. I loved the styling of the watch and was surprised that it looked great on my skinny wrists. It seems like a weird, blocky, bulky smartwatch. But it is none of that. The Fitbit Blaze is a sleek and slim fitness tracker, not a smartwatch.
The Fitbit Blaze is more of a glorified Fitness tracker that has a large colour display. It does have a few smart features such as alerts, notifications, automatic workout tracking, etc. But it doesn’t possess its own native operating system that can run apps. Instead, it is just like a Fitbit Charge 2 with a better display.
You do have some useful features built into the watch. You can access a few guided workouts via the Fitstar option. The Blaze will show you animations of moves that you need to do in order to complete the workout. The Exercise option lets you manually start tracking a workout. You can select the type of workouts you want here on a predefined list in the Fitbit App.
There’s a new feature that was added to my Blaze on a recent update. It’s a Relax feature that assists you with guided breathing sessions. This really works much better than I thought it would. You can choose a 2-minute session in which the Blaze will instruct you to calmly breathe in and breath out. I did this on many occasions with my kid when he was having a tantrum. It actually helped calm him down. It’s great that I can access this at any time on my wrist.
There’s also a stopwatch and alarm present on the Blaze. These features may seem basic, but they can be very useful. But the longevity of someone using them is questionable. I have tried out the guided workout sessions which are pretty basic. I never felt the need to go back to them. To be honest the only real feature I use now is the Exercise feature to manually track my workouts.
I useful feature that I also enjoy on a regular basis is Music Control. You can adjust volume as well as basic Play, Pause, and Skip music on your smartphone. This is a feature that I initially used a lot when I had my iPhone. I would hook up my iPhone to my sound system while it charged. Then I would use the Blaze to wirelessly skip tracks.
The process is simple on Apple devices. But its a different story on Android. You will have to manually pair the Blaze to your smartphones Bluetooth. This leaves for a buggy experience. An experience that has really worked well for a long time now. This is probably due to my smartphone receiving a recent OS update.
Notifications on the Blaze is great. Initially, when I first purchased the Fitbit Blaze two years ago, Notifications were minimal. You would only get notified of calls and SMS. There was no support for third-party apps. But to my luck, there was a firmware update shortly after I bought the Blaze. This update allowed you to select apps that run notifications. So in order words, you can receive notifications from any app you select from a list within the Fitbit app.
Eg. You can choose Whatsapp, Twitter, and Instagram, but leave out Facebook and Calender alerts. I can’t express how useful it is to just lift your wrist up and look at a Whatsapp message on the screen of the Blaze while your phone is in your pocket. I also appreciate the small vibration on the wrist that goes along with the alert. This is perfect for notifications from my reminders app. I sometimes get so into the work that I forget to look at my phone. But my Blaze saves me in most cases.
Today, I rarely make use of the notifications feature. Using this feature means that your Blaze will have to be connected to your phones Bluetooth all day. This is taxing on both the Blaze and smartphones battery life. In a hope to achieve the most out of my devices, I keep Bluetooth and notifications off.
How is the Fitbit Blaze in 2018?
As mentioned above, I keep both Bluetooth and Notifications off on my devices. I only sync my Fitbit Blaze once a day. This is a big help in the battery department for both your smartphone and Blaze watch. I easily get 5 days of charge on this watch. Even today, two years from purchase. It only takes an hour to charge as well from a low power USB source. Like from a laptop. The charging system and dock are odd. But you only need to meddle with this weird charging system only every few days.
The Fitbit Blaze in 2018 is still a decent fitness tracker. Its looks have aged well because the Blaze has an almost unique style. The Blaze is also very comfortable to wear. This leaves me with almost no issues with wearing it to sleep. The Fitbit Blaze will track your steps, heart rate, and sleep. All of which can be accessed in Fitbit’s classy mobile app or website. You can also choose to sync other Fitbit devices as well. This means that you can make use of more than one Fitbit device at a time.
Fitbit has released more watches recently that have more features and functionality than the Blaze. The Fitbit Ionic is the companies latest Fitness tracker and smartwatch combo. This is a better watch than the Blaze but much more pricey. There is, however, a cheaper version of the Ionic called the Fitbit Versa. It has similar software and features, but with a more compact design. The Versa really seems like a great smartwatch to look into because it is aggressively priced, similar to the Blaze.
New Fitbit Models Out Now
There have been talks that Fitbit will update the Blaze by releasing a Blaze 2 this year. They may also release a Fitbit Charge 3 later this year. But so far these are all just rumours.
I honestly do recommend the Blaze and advise that you do get one only if you get it at a reduced price. I seen these go for half price recently. Or you can have a look at the Fitbit Versa if you wish to go full on the smartwatch.
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Hi. I’m Jameel. I’m a Technology Blogger who loves reviewing stuff and voicing my opinions on anything. I hope you find my reviews helpful while having fun on my website.