Add another fitness tracker to the list for 2016. Fitbit aims to rebound after the lackluster debut of the Blaze last month with the Fitbit Alta.

It’s all about fashion. Sorry fitness companies, no matter how you spin it, you just know when someone is counting their steps for the day.

Fitbit’s lineup of trackers gives off the telltale sign with the rubber strap. The company hopes to shift that perception with the release of the Alta. It feels as if Misfit and Fitbit are dueling it out for supremacy in the fashion fitness tracking world.

The upcoming Misfit Ray drops the screen while the Fitbit Alta upgrades to OLED. All in pursuit of looks. You’re cranking the steps, may as well look stylish doing it.

FitBit Alta Launch

The Alta ships in March but pre-orders start today for $130. Venturing a guess, the Alta looks to replace the Charge. And that brings up a con against the Alta. While it has a relatively large OLED screen for notifications and updated tracking info, it tossed aside heart rate tracking.

How long before we see an Alta HR model? Is there a market for fitness trackers without heart rate monitoring? Yes, but it’s dwindling. Focusing on fashion is a smart play, but it ignores the enthusiast call to have everything in one.

Fashion and Fitness Tracking

The major selling point for the Alta will be the interchangeable straps. Multiple colors will be available, and leather options will launch with the tracker. Metal link bands are being talked up by Fitbit. Silver at launch with gold and rose gold coming this summer. The straps do add to the cost.

If you choose the black Alta, you can add blue or plum for $30. Want leather? Gray, pink and camel will launch for $60. Need something for going out? The stainless steel link band will launch for $100.

Fitbit’s Alta could stand the HR tag right about now. The crisp OLED screen for phone notifications and the reduction in overall clunkiness? That would have been huge and vastly undercut the rumored (it’s damn near certain) Apple Watch upgrade.


Following in the Blaze’s footsteps, the Alta features the ‘move’ reminders. Fitbit wants to get rid of the dangers of sitting too long, and the Alta will remind you to get off the couch. I have two border collies for that. Think they are letting you sit down?

Instead of the simple ‘move’ notification, Fitbit’s Alta will set hourly goals of 250 steps. At the 50 minute mark each hour, the band will vibrate to remind you to get up and hit the mini-step goal.

Fitbit Alta fitness tracker announcement

You won’t be starring in a Bowflex commercial, but the 2-3 minutes of walking could keep your metabolism up, and we all need to move around a bit more over sitting at the desk for 10 hours.

Other features include smart activity tracking. Start elliptical training? The Alta picks it up and stores it in the app. Running, walking, biking and aerobic training can all be tagged automatically by the tracker and stored in the app.

Battery life comes in at Fitbit’s typical five days.

You can jump on the Fitbit craze and battle it out with your friends via the app thanks to challenges. It’s the appeal of Fitbit. Making fitness a competition between friends. It helps everyone you know owns one it seems. Tell them to dust it off and get moving.

Fitbit has staked out its spot as the most recognized brand in fitness tracking. Moving into fashion-friendly territory seems to be the move by most companies in 2016. How it shakes out with Apple updating its watch remains to be seen, but Fitbit can position as the cheaper alternative.

Look for our review closer to launch.

Gear. TV. Movies. Lifestyle. Photography. Yeah, I’m the type who sees a shiny object and is immediately captivated. Wait... There’s another. You can reach me at marcus@newsledge.com

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