The Fitbit Inspire 3 feels so comfortable and light (at only slightly over 17g) that I often forgot it was strapped to my wrist.
This fitness tracker is also light on the wallet at $148 and certainly one to consider if you are looking for a simple, affordable and lightweight fitness tracker.
Available in three colours of black (version reviewed), pink and orange, it comes in the form of a small wristband with a simple design. It consists of a rectangular plastic module with easily-detachable silicone straps. The module has a colour vertical AMOLED touchscreen display with two touch-sensitive buttons on its sides.
The display might be small, but you can swipe through the menu interface smoothly. To return to the main display, just press the side buttons together. Plus, the display can be read even under bright sunlight.
With the acquisition of Fitbit by Google, there is more integration with the Android platform. A window automatically appeared on my Google Pixel 6 Pro when the Inspire 3 was placed near the smartphone. You can then pair them without much fuss.
|No built-in GPS
|No NFC, aka no contactless payment
|Accurate step and sleep tracking
|Additional features need subscription
|Long battery life
|Free 6-month Fitbit Premium
Once paired, the fitness tracker can show notifications but you cannot reply to them. The tracker also lacks Near Field Communication, which means there is no Fitbit Pay contactless payment.
As you might expect, the Inspire 3 tracks your daily physical activities, such as steps taken, active minutes, calories burnt, sleep and heart rate. And it can automatically track most exercises such as runs and walks.
There is no built-in GPS though. Instead, it uses your smartphone’s GPS, or connected GPS, to measure the distance you walk or run. As I was down with stomach flu (and shingles as a result) during the review period, I didn’t manage to clock any runs. But the Inspire 3 was pretty spot-on using connected GPS when I did a short 2km walk around my neighbourhood.
However, in terms of step tracking, the Inspire 3 is highly accurate even before calibration. Its readings differed from my calibrated Apple Watch Series 7 by only around 3%.
Sleep tracking has been Fitbit’s biggest strength. And the Inspire 3 continues to impress. It automatically tracks the amount of time you spend in light, deep and REM (rapid eye movement) sleep cycles, as well as the time you are awake.
The Fitbit app will score your sleep, which is based on your heart rate, time spent awake or recess and sleep stages. For more insights, the Fitbit Premium subscription service (S$13 per month or S$108 a year) offers a Sleep Profile, which helps you understand and act on long-term sleeping behaviour. But you need to clock at least two weeks of sleep to get your Sleep Profile.
Other features of Fitbit Premium include Daily Readiness score, which is based on your historical record of sleep, activity and heart rate. It will then advise you if you should concentrate on recovery or if you can push yourself further in your next workout. The service also includes workout videos, wellness report and mindfulness sessions.
The Inspire 3 comes with free six months’ subscription of Fitbit Premium. So you can test it out for a while before deciding whether you want to continue with the service.
Battery life is rated at 10 days on a full charge. With my recent bout of illness and general sedentary lifestyle, I found its battery life to fall only 50% after two weeks, despite constant wearing except during showering.
On the downside, Fitbit uses another proprietary charging cable for the Inspire 3. This cable is probably different from a current Fitbit product you have. So you might want to make sure you do not lose this cable, as it might be troublesome to get a replacement.
VERDICT: There are plenty of cheap fitness trackers that you can get for as low as S$30. But considering that the Fitbit Inspire 3 comes with six months of free Fitbit Premium, you are actually paying only $70 for the fitness tracker. And if you buy from some e-commerce platforms like Shopee and Lazada, you might be even paying less.
Not to mention, very few fitness trackers will be able to compare with the Fitbit Inspire 3 in terms of accuracy for tracking your physical activities and sleep. This fitness tracker will give you the reason not to buy a smartwatch.