Fitbit finally gets serious about delivering more meaningful fitness tracker data

Sleep, nutrition and cardio stats set to change
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This time last year, Fitbit had already announced a new fitness tracker, the Fitbit Blaze as its first smartwatch-style wearable. In 2017, it's put the hardware talk to one side for now to dedicated some time to talk software.

Benoit Raimbault, marketing director for EMEA at Fitbit, reassures us that it will be seeking to improve the trackers that the company launched during 2016 with new software updates. It's already started that process with the move to bring Cardio Fitness and Guided Breathing features from the Charge 2 to the Blaze and it looks like there will be more to come.

Read this: The best fitness trackers to buy in 2017

Fitbit owners can also expect to see more meaningful, actionable insights, something that we've been asking from Fitbit for a while now. That move started with the decision to get serious about sleep tracking in June last year when it introduced the new sleep schedule mode. With the latest Fitbit app update, you can now set personal goals, access social features in a new Facebook-style feed and there's updates to its Fitstar workout app.

"We are going to start talking more about what we are going to do with data," Raimbault told us. "You are going to get a lot more insights, guidance, tools to motivate yourself to be more active and to help manage and achieve your fitness goals."

Fitbit finally gets serious about delivering more meaningful fitness tracker data

There's of course no getting away from the fact that Fitbit grabbed the headlines in big way late last year with the acquisition of struggling smartwatch startup Pebble. Despite mounting evidence that a Fitbit smartwatch is almost certainly in the works, Raimbault wouldn't be drawn on what we can expect to see from the Pebble integration. He does believe there's some obvious benefits by having the added expertise on board.

"Pebble uses an open system for third party apps and that is very important for us," he said. "On the Blaze we have apps, but not ones that you can download. We have shown we can build them. We are obviously thinking about how we can build on apps like the Fitstar one featured on the Blaze. It's really about helping our R&D with our platform and software operating system. It's an important acquisition."

Raimbault is keen to hammer home this push to deliver more on the software front. As Fitbit adds more data for its community of users to tap into, he's believes the way those extra metrics are delivered is key.

"Our approach is to offer more guidance, coaching and to improve the insights, he told us. "We know aspects like sleep and nutrition and cardio fitness is important.

I think what we've done around cardio fitness levels is a very good expression of what we want to do going forward. To convert a health metric into something that is super easy to understand for consumers. It's really going to help users understand their overall health and fitness."

Fitbit is certainly saying all the right things as far as helping users make more sense of data is concerned. Those days of simply collecting steps and logging sleep with no context or actionable insights could finally be a thing of the past. It's time for the 'what next' and thankfully the biggest name in wearable tech is doing something about it.

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Michael Sawh


Michael Sawh has been covering the wearable tech industry since the very first Fitbit landed back in 2011. Previously the resident wearable tech expert at Trusted Reviews, he also marshaled the features section of

He also regularly contributed to T3 magazine when they needed someone to talk about fitness trackers, running watches, headphones, tablets, and phones.

Michael writes for GQ, Wired, Coach Mag, Metro, MSN, BBC Focus, Stuff, TechRadar and has made several appearances on the BBC Travel Show to talk all things tech. 

Michael is a lover of all things sports and fitness-tech related, clocking up over 15 marathons and has put in serious hours in the pool all in the name of testing every fitness wearable going. Expect to see him with a minimum of two wearables at any given time.

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