PNG images: Fitbit
Fitbit is an American company headquartered in San Francisco, California, known for its products of the same name, which are activity trackers, wireless-enabled wearable technology devices that measure data such as the number of steps walked, heart rate, quality of sleep, steps climbed, and other personal metrics involved in fitness. The first product released was the Fitbit Tracker. Some evidence has found that the use of similar devices results in less weight loss rather than more.
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Alongside the activity trackers, Fitbit offers a website and mobile app for iOS, Android and Windows 10 Mobile. The trackers can be synced to smart devices via Bluetooth or uploaded to a computer running Windows or macOSusing the Bluetooth USB dongle. Users have the ability to log their food, activities, and weight, to track over time and can set daily and weekly goals for themselves for steps, calories burned and consumed, and distance walked. Calories in versus calories out is more accurately measured when app users keep their tracker on. However, the app can be used without a tracker to measure calories on a lifestyle app. The app offers a community page where users can challenge themselves and compete against other users. The social element anticipates an increase in motivation, finding that users take an average of 700 more steps per day when they have friends on the app. Users can choose to share their progress pictures and achievement badges.
In those who are overweight or obese, a 2016 study indicates that the use of wearable technology combined with standard behavioral weight loss intervention results in less weight loss after two years of use when compared to usual weight loss interventions. There was no evidence that the devices altered the amount that people exercised or their diet compared to control. A 2015 study found use of lifestyle apps demonstrate promising results in promoting healthy living in adults. It is unclear whether these devices affect the amount of physical activity children engage in.
A small 2014 study of eight fit band devices during a 69-minute workouts that included 13 different activities found the bands were at best "reasonably accurate", with the Fitbit Zip and Fitbit One scoring 10.1% and 10.4% error ratings, respectively.
A small 2015 study had participants wear multiple devices on their wrists and hips performing different walking/running speeds on a treadmill. Fitbit devices worn on the hip accurately measured steps taken within 1 step of 100% accuracy. Devices worn on the wrist, however, were off by an average of 11 steps per minute. When measuring the number of calories burned, Fitbit devices worn on the hip underestimated by an average of 6%, while devices worn on the wrist overestimated calories burned by 21%. Authors concluded that both the Fitbit One and Fitbit Flex devices reliably measured step counts and energy expenditure, with hip-based Fitbit devices being more accurate than wrist-based devices. These measurements did not address the question of health effects.