Withings, Fitbit or Apple watch

Hi All
I guess this question is a little outside of Traineroad but lots of like-minded people on this forum so hopefully, some experiences that can be shared.
Basically, I am after a system to track activity, sleep and weight and have it all displayed in one place.

I used to have a fitbit watch but struggled with the watches as they kept failing on me (had 4 in total). I also have some fitbit scales and thought the app was great really simple but displayed the info I wanted to see. After getting my money back on my fitibt I bought an Apple watch series 3. I have to sync the scales info via myfitnesspal and really dont like the Health app.

Looking at potentially moving over to the Withings system and selling my watch and scales or trying the fitibit ionic
Any thoughts anybody???

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Have you looked at Garmin’s offerings?

Also interested. My biggest, biggest frustration with health tracking ecosystems is the apparent inability to identify when I am or have been cycling and stop tracking steps. Currently I have the Nokia Body+ scale which is now on the Withings ecosystem, and I’m digging the app. Tracking HR and sleep using the Withings watch sounds good but it’d drive me nuts if it added steps on whilst I was on the turbo or commuting…

You don’t need to use the Health app, I don’t have a suggestion for another app but I believe there are a few good dashboard apps available.

Fitbit app’s circles make for a more compact and good looking dashboard but there isn’t a lot of info underneath. For example you can’t see weekly/monthly running miles, only total step miles. And forget about any summary info on cycling. And Fitbit’s own research shows the sleep Stages feature has hit or miss accuracy.

The Garmin app is pretty good - nice summary, more details, and sport level tracking.

I just bought a Apple Watch series 4 and love it for other reasons. The health app is fine for me, not as pretty as Fitbit but more functional.

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Not really looked into Garmin, what scales do you use with that? I dont need the app to be overly complex. Cycling is done with TR so its just something that ties everything else together.

Garmin has their own scale. Jonathan has mentioned his use in the Dexa thread.

I would have thought weight would be a good one to pull into the TrainerRoad calendar. Rather than a static measurement. Then you could track it over time. There are various WiFi scales which I’m sure could integrate into TR. Once weight is in then why not steps???


About 6 months ago I jumped from FitBit to Garmin. I have the FitBit scales, which I sync to MFP and then to Garmin. TR also syncs to Garmin so I have all my health data (steps, sleep, activities, weight) in one place on Garmin Connect. I prefer the FitBit interface over Garmin, but like you I kept having the devices fail.

Every Fitbit tracker I’ve owned has some type of failure within 6 months.

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Garmin sounds interesting although never liked there bike computers

I’ve had the 520 for years. Been rock solid and does everything I need it to. No complaints.

Same here 520 has been reliable.

My FitBit Blaze has been 100% reliable too. The Aria scale works fine too, and I like the automatic upload to FitBit, then onto MFP etc. My only complaint with the Aria is that it only gives weight and fat percentage, and I’m sure that water percentage is important too. I see a lot of weight gains after a heavy workout which I’m sure is water but Aria reports as fat.

How much confidence do people have in their scales’ ability to separate out fat, muscle, water, sketelon etc? I must admit to being a bit dubious about the technology.

HeartWatch app on iPhone has a really nice dashboard, this is one of three (the one I don’t like lol). Give this app a try it works great with Apple Watch or anything else that feeds data into Health (e.g. Strava, MFP for Aria scale data, etc).

It’s much better than Fitbit app. I consider the Fitbit app as the gold standard for simplicity, but Fitbit completely drops the ball on details in my opinion.

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I have spent a lot of time researching different smart watches trying to find the perfect one. Here’s my list of things I want in a smart watch:

  1. GPS for tracking run activities (my Garmin 520 does my bike workouts)
  2. Sleep tracking
  3. Battery that lasts a week
  4. Counts steps
  5. Heart rate monitoring
  6. Weight tracking
  7. Notifications from other apps
  8. Nice looking watch that I can wear with regular clothes and not feel silly
  9. Data ecosystem that brings this all together and is easy to read/use

What I discovered is that no watch does all this. What I really want is the Apple Watch for it’s look and smart features, but battery life and sleep tracking are lacking. The Garmin watch has all the fitness features down, but isn’t such a good smart watch and has more rugged sporty look. It’s possible the FitBit Ionic may be the happy medium, but when I was selecting a device I was just done with FitBit devices failing me.

I didn’t like the Ionic for various reasons, primarily its slow and fitbitOS is very much a work in progress. And a year later there an increasing number of posts about some quality related issue, which is classic Fitbit.

Its so darn easy to charge the Apple Watch that battery is not an issue for me. I slap it on the charger while in the morning and evening bathroom rituals. And I don’t like wearing a watch to bed, so I use Sleep Cycle app as both an alarm clock and sleep tracker. And DCRainmaker is reporting that Apple Watch series 4 has the best wrist based optical HR accuracy of all sport/smart watches. You can track sleep on the AW if you load one of several really good apps, I’ve tried it with the original series 0 AW.

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Apple Watch

All Apple Watch owners that I know say battery life isn’t a problem. I feel there is a fair bit of bias to it though. I want to wear my watch all day except when I’m in the shower, so the limited battery life is a non-starter, no matter how good the rest of it’s functionality is. I got the Fenix 5 Plus and it lasts a week.

Might be worth taking a look at the Oura ring. It is primarily a sleep/recovery tracker, but still counts steps and imports activities from Apple Health. Also records nighttime HRV, resting HR, body temp, and respiratory rate. I’ve only had mine for a week so far, but seems like it will be a useful tool for tracking recovery.

I picked up a Garmin Fenix 5 Plus a few weeks back on a sale (they are now on sale everywhere). There are a few quirks to the interface but I have to admit it’s exceeded my expectations. I haven’t tapped into the mapping capabilities yet, but those look amazing. It now does Spotify too which is fantastic for when I want to leave the phone at home.