Winner of the Stiftung Warentest and bestseller

The equipment of Fitness trackers has been getting more and more extensive for years, yet the price is falling We have different bracelets for everyday and sport for 2021 selected and tested and explain which functions besides Counting steps and Heart rate monitor are still important.

Purchase advice

Fitness trackers should not be viewed as reliable measuring instruments, but rather as motivation to exercise regularly and adequately. After all, many current fitness bracelets can work on that GPS of the connected smartphone. This improves the accuracy of some data. Your main task, however, is to motivate the user and to point out when the amount of exercise breaks down. And which model is recommended now?

The best fitness trackers 2021: an overview of all test winners

placement product price offer
bestseller Yamay fitness bracelet approx. 25 euros To Amazon
Test winner fitness bracelet Honor Band 5 about 30 euros To Amazon
Accurate fitness tracking Apple Watch Series 6 about 400 euros To Amazon

Inexpensive bestseller on Amazon: Yamay Fitness Armband

YAMAY fitness bracelet

YAMAY fitness bracelet

Benefits:

  • attractively priced
  • with heart rate monitor

Disadvantage:

Amongst the step counters, the Yamay fitness armband is right at the forefront at Amazon – mainly because of the low price. But apart from a few bugs, the users are satisfied with an average of 4.1 out of 5 stars.

Image source: manufacturer

The tracker offers 14 training modes and even provides pulse values ​​despite the low price. We dare to doubt that these are better than the test winner mentioned above – Stiftung Warentest did not examine the Amazon bestseller. In any case, the functions are impressive: sleep monitoring, alarm clock, vibration notifications for incoming calls or messages on the smartphone. You can also choose between different clock faces. It is also splash-proof, but not suitable for swimming. Given the small price difference to the Honor band, the surcharge for the above test winner should be worthwhile.

Test winner fitness tracker: Honor Band 5

Honor Band 5

Honor Band 5

Benefits:

  • comparatively solid fitness tracking
  • Cheap

Disadvantage:

In the test booklet 7/2020 by Stiftung Warentest there are, to be precise, three “test winners” with the same overall grade, namely with a school grade of 3.3 (“satisfactory”). So none of them can really shine. We fished out the Honor Band 5 because it does a bit better than the competition in the fitness discipline. The mediocre overall rating comes not least from the fact that the Stiftung Warentest devalued the bracelet because of only sufficient data protection. If other functions are more important for you, the Fitbit Charge 3 may be better suited.

Image source: manufacturer

The Honor Band 5 does not provide a convincing pulse measurement when walking or jogging. It looks better when cycling. Overall, however, it collects more precise values ​​than other fitness trackers. It also offers all of the important wristband functions including swim tracking and sleep monitoring. With the very reasonable price, it is also a price-performance tip.

The exact fitness tracker and test winner is a smartwatch: Apple Watch 6

Apple Watch Series 6 (GPS) aluminum 44mm blue

Apple Watch Series 6 (GPS) aluminum 44mm blue

Benefits:

  • high quality
  • Always-on display (brighter than Watch 5)
  • extensive fitness functions
  • exact pulse measurement
  • Blood oxygen sensor
  • Siri and Apple Pay support
  • high comfort
  • Compass app
  • Altimeter can be activated permanently

Disadvantage:

  • only for iPhone owners
  • short battery life

Yes, there are also fitness trackers that, according to Stiftung Warentest, provide precise values. Strictly speaking, they are smartwatches. The test winner is the Apple Watch Series 6, made of aluminum and a size of 44mm (although the other case types do not differ technically). The watch got an overall grade of 1.8 (“good”). Without the devaluation due to deficiencies in the data protection declaration, the rating would be even better.

Image source: GIGA.

The Apple Watch is an excellent addition to the iPhone (which is essential for using the watch). The Apple Watch is not only suitable for receiving messages, but also as a hands-free device for phone calls, calling up information, answering messages and controlling smart home devices via apps or the voice assistant. Athletes benefit from the integrated GPS, the precise pulse measurement, the waterproof housing and the integrated music player. So the smartphone can stay at home while exercising.

Fitness tracker: alternatives in the smartwatch warehouse

If the Apple Watch Series 6 is too expensive for you, you can use the new Apple Watch SE, which is available for around 300 euros. It’s comparatively cheap – Apple’s “reason model”, if you will. However, the display is a bit smaller and the performance is not as high as in the top models.

Apple SE (GPS, aluminum case, 40mm)

Apple SE (GPS, aluminum case, 40mm)

If you don’t have an iPhone, you don’t have to do without exact training values: With an excellent rating, the Garmin Venu shine.

Garmin Forerunner 245 Music

Garmin Forerunner 245 Music

For more information, see our smartwatch purchase advisor and our video:

Fitness tracker in the test: This is how it was tested and selected

In our own tests of fitness trackers, we found that real steps (depending on the model) were recorded with reasonable accuracy. At the end of the day, however, the different bracelets had very different results. Reason: Many a tracker actually tried to count steps in the first place. Other models recorded almost every movement as a step – the main thing was movement! As a user, you can find both good or bad. Fitness tracker test on GIGA.DE: Among others, Samsung Gear Fit2 Pro (2017), Xiaomi Mi Band 3 (2018) and Samsung Galaxy Fit e (2019).

The Stiftung Warentest (Edition 06/2020) wanted in their investigation values ​​as accurate as possible for distance, calorie consumption and pulse measurement. In addition to walking, jogging, cycling and swimming were also examined. 40 percent of these test results were included in the overall grade. Furthermore, the wristbands were examined for handling, communication and other functions, stability, data protection and harmful substances.

Buying fitness trackers: what you should know

If you want to go looking for a fitness tracker yourself, here are a few tips for buying it.

Fitness tracker: smooth transition to other types of equipment

A fitness tracker is usually thought of as a slim bracelet that can record movement data. The difference in design as well as functional is fluid compared to sports watches and smartwatches. Before buying a fitness tracker, you should therefore first consider:

Buy fitness tracker: what data do you want to collect?

What do I want to measure with it? Is the pedometer enough for me, or do I also want to analyze calories, sleep phases and pulse? If the latter is the case, a heart rate monitor is necessary. Do I want to use it to record workouts such as running, cycling or swimming without a smartphone? Then you need the support of the corresponding sport and possibly GPS. Here a “hybrid” between a smartwatch and a tracker (like our last example above) could be the right choice, unless you immediately click on one Sports watch (e.g. Polar Vantage M) or Smartwatch (e.g. Apple Watch Series 6) wants to fall back. However, the watches are heavier and less suitable for tracking at night, although this is now possible with watchOS 7. In addition, some sports watches have no integrated pedometer, but only rely on GPS. So you do not measure the movement in everyday life.

For more details, see our breakdown of the categories from fitness trackers to sports watches to smartwatches.

Fitness tracker bracelet: For women, men, colorful, narrow, short, long …

Some fitness trackers are available in two versions – large and small. In contrast to smartwatches, the versions often only differ in the length of the bracelet. If the manufacturer makes a recommendation as to which version is adapted for which wrist size, you can measure it. If not, your best bet is to go to your local trusted dealer and try on the strap.

Other manufacturers offer popular fitness trackers more bracelets on – especially for women, for men, in different colors, made of silicone, made of metal, … You shouldn’t expect any special quality from cheap Chinese products. In some cases, the customer ratings on Amazon help to find a good tape for the personal fitness tracker.

Smartphone app for the fitness tracker – indispensable

Every fitness tracker has one Smartphone app. Here are the Data merged, evaluated and sometimes even made recommendations. The app is an important criterion for choosing a product from brands like Fitbit. You can’t expect so much from no-name developers – some of them offer no or poorly translated German-language apps. If interfaces to other fitness portals are integrated, this can be tolerated.

The associated app not only helps with data analysis: via the smartphone, Updates played on the fitness band. During workouts, thanks to the link between the tracker and mobile phone, the data from the smartphone can also be used (GPS!) To complete the statistics. All major manufacturers offer an app for iOS in the App Store and for Android in the Google Play Store.

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