Wearables are now a huge trend. The focus in the current wearable market is clearly on wrist-mounted devices, whether they are smartwatches, fitness bands, or a combination of the two. Wearable fitness technology has been around for a few years now, with Nike+ making fitness tracking tech in collaboration with Apple, later succeeded by the popular FuelBand. But we recently came across a simple yet powerful tool from Samsung which is a bit more.
The Fit is an attractive gadget. It has a beautiful 1.65-inch curved AMOLED screen. As it is the case with AMOLED screens, this one too shows rich and saturated colours. If there is a bright-coloured wallpaper on the device, the Fit looks really pretty on the wrist. It is a head-turner when the screen is lit. For additional style, Samsung has used a plastic frame in chrome finish around the screen.
The Fit is incredibly comfortable to wear. Due to its curved screen, it wraps around the wrist. The rubber strap and lightweight – it weighs just 27 grams – means a user will not find it bothersome. In fact, it is easier to wear the Fit compared to some of the large-size watches. The Fit is companion device for a smartphone and (currently) works with only a select 17 Galaxy smartphones and tablets.
The Fit cannot be used as a standalone gadget because it has to be paired with the phone and set up using the Gear Fit Manager app. Fortunately, the whole processes of pairing the Fit with a phone is a pain-free experience. It is all about powering the device, switching on the Bluetooth on the phone and following a few basic instructions in Gear Fit Manager app.
Samsung has created a user interface for the Fit that relies on left or right swipes. It is easy to use. A user can swipe left or right until he finds the option he is looking for. Tap on the option and it is done!
So what exactly, you can do with the Fit?
There are two sides to the device – the smartwatch and the fitness tracker. The Fit, when it is connected to a smartphone or tablet, can show you notifications for the incoming messages or calls. You can read the messages on the Fit or reject the calls through it. But you can’t make a call from it or send a reply to message from it.
If you do not turn off gestures (by default it is turned on), you can also see the time on the Gear every time you flick your wrist. Flicking the wrist wakes up the screen. The Fit takes the location information from the connected smartphone and can show you the local weather.
As a fitness tracker, the Fit offers better functionality. But only on paper. The implementation of fitness related features is iffy. The prime example is the heart rate sensor in the Fit. It can be of incredible value to users while exercising but only if it is capable of real-time and continuous heart rate monitoring. To check heart beat with the Fit, you have keep your hand incredibly still. It is of no use when you are jogging.
The Fit also tracks physical activity and counts steps in real time. This is very useful. However, here too the implementation is not very thoughtful. Unlike the regular fitness trackers, where tracking is always on, in the Fit you have to go to the tracker app and start the tracking. The same is true for sleep tracking. You have to switch the tracking on/off manually.
On a final note, though there are a few hick-ups but having the gadget made us jump into the exercise mode. It could be due to it being a new experience or simply cause we wanted to see our health stats; whatever the reason, everyone in the house got on their fitness shoes and jumped on the fit train. If Samsung can fix a few minor bugs (sync process, start-stop process, real-time heart rate monitoring) the Fit can prove to be a winner. We give it 6 out of 10 stars.