In August 2018, a new Fitbit fitness watch hit the market with better features over the previous Charge 2. Some swimmers call it the best Fitbit. It has a nonstop heart rate tracker, and it's water-resistant for swimming in pools.
With at least 15 exercise tracking modes, the Fitbit Charge 3 suits nearly everyone who likes a fitness tracker, from circuit trainers to yoga enthusiasts.
The thing is, Fitbit released the newer Charge 4 in 2020. So perhaps you're wondering. Is the Fitbit 3 a better price now? And is it still the best Fitbit for you?
We're delivering the Fitbit Charge 3 specifications you need to know. Everything from technical stuff to Fitbit accessories in an easy-to-digest format. When you've finished this article, you'll have the information you need to decide whether you should wear this fitness tracker around your wrist!
Fitbit Charge 3 Specifications
This fitness watch received good reviews during its launch phase, with users appreciating features like a better touchscreen. Although it's not the latest fitness tracker, it's popular. Let's check out the specifications of the Charge 3.
- Device Dimensions: 35.8mm x 22.7mm x 11.8mm
- Weight: 30g
- Small band fits wrists up to 180mm
- Large band fits wrists up to 220mm
- Screen Size: 35.8mm x 22.7mm
- Screen Display: OLED full touchscreen, TFT
- Battery: Lithium-polymer, up to 7 days battery life
- Charge time: Full charge within 2 hours
- Storage: Stats and data stored for seven days between syncing
- Fifteen exercise modes preloaded.
- Autotrack preferred exercise mode with SmartTrack.
- Operating system: Fitbit OS
- Connectivity: WiFi, Bluetooth 4.0 radio transceiver
- Connected GPS: latches to cellphone GPS, no built-in antenna
- Synchronisation Range: Up to 6 meters away
- Compatibility: Apple iOS 13+, Android OS 8.0i+, Windows10
- Water-resistant to 50m, swimming pool only, open water not recommended
- Operating Temperature: -10° to 45°C
- Sensors: Optical heart rate tracker, 3-axis accelerometer, altimeter, SpO2, vibration motor
- Maximum altitude: 9,144m
- Material: Aerospace-grade aluminium case, housing and buckle made of anodised aluminium, with 3-display Corning Gorilla Glass
- NFC chip edition: Some editions feature a built-in NFC chip that supports Fitbit Pay
- Fitbit accessories: Box includes tracker with a small band, charging cable, and a large-sized extra band (detachable bands sold separately)
The Fitbit Charge 3 specifications listed have been collected from the manufacturer's user manual. Now, let's get into a detailed description of the Charge 3's features and additional Fitbit accessories.
The anodised aluminium buckle and housing gives the metal surface a durable, corrosion-resistant, and decorative finish.
Please note, anodised aluminium can contain traces of nickel. So if you have any sensitivity to nickel, there's a slight risk of an allergic reaction. But the Charge 3 does comply with strict guidelines on nickel use in products.
The "Classic" band on the Charge 3 is made of durable, flexible thermoplastic material like many sports watches. In addition, one special edition (SE) Charge 3 has woven polyester and elastomer wristbands at additional cost. These bands are also interchangeable, so your Fitbit will keep up with your constantly evolving style. There are numerous third party bands available on the market.
Charge 3 Battery Life
The Charge 3 connects to a USB plug or a computer for battery charging. Full charge is reached in between 1-2 hours. You can check the battery by pressing the button during charges. You'll see a solid, smiling battery icon when it's fully charged.
The manufacturer states that the battery lasts for up to a week. However, if you use the Charge 3 a lot, the battery may need more frequent recharging.
On the other hand, the battery may retain up to 20% charge if used lightly for a whole week. To check battery levels, swipe up on the clock face to see the battery icon at the top of the screen.
Charge 3 Design
With a small and large band included in the packaging, the Charge 3 is considered one size fits all. The backlit touchscreen is significantly larger, a notable improvement over the previous model, Charge 2.
The button on the side "wakes up" the device. When you hold the button down, more options pop up. The Charge 3 interface is very user-friendly. You access the features by swiping up, down, left or right.
The larger, improved touchscreen on this fitness tracker features a wide-angle display with TFT (Thin Film Transistor) and OLED (Organic Light Emitting Diode). It makes the touchscreen vivid and readable in sunlight.
The Charge 3 is durable but still lightweight. Its simple design looks good with anything you wear, and it can withstand the wear and tear of everyday life. Plus, you can always add some style to it too!
Charge 3 Price
When it launched in 2018, the Charge 3 cost $229.95. Interestingly, that was the same list price as the Charge 2 model when it launched.
When the Charge 4 was introduced, prices varied on the Charge 3 fitness tracker. Generally, the price doesn't drop below $200 on a Charge 3 bought in Australia.
Current Fitbit prices online are $286.21 for a Charge 3 SE Fitness Activity Tracker, designed in graphite and white silicone with small and large-sized bands included.
For a Fitbit colour splash, the one size Charge 3 NFC Special Edition Advanced Fitness Tracker in Rose-Gold and Lavender is currently priced online for $280.21.
The heart rate tracking feature on Charge 3 has a SpO2 Pulse oximetry sensor. As a result, it's very reliable and considered more accurate compared to other fitness tracker models.
This fitness watch does a capable job of tracking weight lifting, climbing stairs, and biking. As noted, the Charge 3 tracks swimming exceptionally well, and for runners, inputting a custom stride length makes tracking more accurate.
This fitness watch is set up for notifications, including calls, calendar events, emails, and texts (the Charge 3 displays emojis!). The text display offers easy reading with replies and vibration settings you can customise.
Fitbit App for Charge 3
The Fitbit app on Charge 3 boasts multiple features for a fitness tracker. You can log dietary habits and access different workouts. The sleep analysis provides helpful insights into the quality of your sleep, and various communities are available to join.
Fitbit accessories include the premium Fitbit app for an additional monthly cost. Perks include fitness coaching, more sleep score details, and tips personalised for you.
Charge 3 Pros
We can describe the pros of Charge 3 in percentages. The touchscreen is 30% larger than the Charge 2, and the Charge 3's aluminium body makes this fitness watch feel 20% lighter on your wrist.
The sensor tracking features on the Charge 3 allows you to set goals, meet goals and set higher goals during various kinds of exercise. In addition, the diet tracking features encourage healthier eating, and the Fitbit Pay non-contactless payment system is beneficial in today's world.
Charge 3 Cons
Some users of this fitness tracker found it too sensitive and said it recorded steps from simple movements like typing or handwashing. Setting up customised stride lengths can help to make tracking more accurate.
The biggest concern most users have is the Charge 3 doesn't feature a built-in GPS. Of course, most people want that in a fitness tracker, and it is offered in the Fitbit Charge 4. But the Charge 3 does connect to GPS on a cellphone for distance tracking.
Charge 3 Care and Maintenance
You can wear the Charge 3 in a pool or the shower, but it's good to give your wrist a break now and again. If you've worn the Charge 3 for a long time, consider removing it for an hour or so.
It's easy to care for the Charge 3, but like any fitness watch, don't use body washes or hand soaps, dish detergent, or hand sanitisers to clean the device. Instead, it's best to use fresh water and soap-free cleansers like Cetaphil to clean your Charge 3.
When you're applying sunscreen, it's a good idea to remove your Charge 3. And while many users wear their fitness tracker while swimming in a pool or showering, it's a great idea to dry off your Charge 3 when it gets wet before putting it back on your wrist.
Make the Fitbit Charge 3 Yours Today
While there's no built-in GPS as with the Fitbit Charge 4, the Charge 3 is a well-priced model in the fitness tracker market, especially in Australia, where a special feature comes standard for users.
All versions of the Charge 3 sold in Australia feature Fitbit Pay support. Users in the USA or the UK have to upgrade to the SE (special edition) Charge 3 to access contactless payment. That's great to know!
This fitness tracker has no shortage of dedicated users who love its functional design, impressive battery life, and easily navigable touchscreen. So maybe you'll find this is the best Fitbit for you too.