Friday, January 31, 2014

@FitBit Ultra vs. @Jawbone UP

For a couple of years now I've had my FitBit Ultra.  I bought it used off of ebay as I couldn't afford it new and wasn't sure it was what I really wanted any way.  I loved that I could plug its receiver into my computer and have it receive data from the device and have it all sync into MyFitnessPal.  It made a great way to keep track of my exercise and eating habits.  I used it a few times to track my sleep, but I already know my sleep habits are bad.  So I didn't bother with that much.  My only problem with it was that if I wasn't careful, it would pop off of my pants, or if it got wet.  I've also forgotten to take it off of my pants before tossing them into the laundry.  Not good!

Then the Jawbone UP was announced.  It would sync directly with my phone. It was worn on the wrist and was water resistant.  The biggest draw, though, was that it would do the same basic things my FitBit would do, but be more convenient.  Not wanting to pay too much for (yet another) gadget, I waited until I could find it discounted on ebay.  (I really like ebay.)

At any rate, I've worn it around and had it track my exercise.  Eventually, though, I ended up drawing comparisons between the new UP and my old Ultra.  This was what my comparisons came up with.  Note: I'm using an iPhone 5 with these trackers.

FitBit Ultra Jawbone UP
tracks steps and stairsdoesn't differentiate stairs from steps
tracks sleepsame
syncs with wired USB receiver plugged into computerplugs into headphone jack on phone
(won't work if you're using a Life Proof case, you have to remove the case)
charges on same wired receiverUSB plug adapter for charging
clips onto pants/brawear on non-dominant wrist
Not water resistantwater resistant

I wore both at the Disney 1/2 Marathon earlier this month and wanted to show you the difference in the displays. I had them both on the same amount of time, so I can only figure the distance travelled is related to where the tracker is kept on your body.  Getting the information from the FitBit was easy as the dashboard is already on my computer. Getting it from the UP requires sharing to facebook or twitter from my phone and snagging it that way.



As to which is better, that depends on my mood and what I'm putting up with. I found it hard to wear the JawBone with a watch or bracelet. I also have very thin wrists so at times it rubbed just wrong and was annoying. I also prefer to have my phone in a LifeProof case when working out. If it's in that case, I can't sync it with my phone as it won't reach all the way into the socket. On the other hand, if I'm wearing the FitBit Ultra, I have to worry about it being knocked off or getting wet. I also have to be near or at my computer for it to sync as it won't talk directly to my phone. I'd love to get one that talks via bluetooth to my phone, neither of which I have will do so. I don't have the money to keep investing in new toys, so I'll alternate between these two as both of their apps will sync with MyFitnessPal as a single contact point.

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