Why isn't health app as good as fitbits?

Discussion in 'Apple Watch' started by chillip, Oct 11, 2016.

  1. chillip macrumors 6502a

    Mar 16, 2013
    I recently got a flex 2 and wear it with my Apple Watch. The Fitbit app is far superior than Apple health is every way. I'm considering just wearing the flex 2 and losing the Apple Watch.
  2. bunnicula macrumors 68040


    Jul 23, 2008
    Care to elaborate? I mean, I have no personal stake in your choice of fitness wearables, but "Fitbit is better" isn't going to help anyone help you to determine whether or not the AW might meet your needs.
  3. Howyalikdemapls macrumors 6502

    Sep 2, 2013
    I can't say much about which is better, but I know a lot of people who use the FitBit app and have competitions and challenges with each other. I used to use it by keeping my phone in my pocket, which worked for steps and miles but not for stairs. Several of my friends have switched to AW though, which doesn't work with FitBit. I know there's an app that syncs steps between your AW and the FitBit app, but it still doesn't count towards challenges. Does Apple Health have a similar social aspect with challenges and whatnot?
  4. chillip thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Mar 16, 2013
    I wasn't saying Fitbit is better. I'm saying the Fitbit app is better. The latest ios10 health app is very poor imo.
  5. exxxviii macrumors 65816


    May 20, 2015
    I wear both my AW and a Fitbit Charge 2. AW is great for some its smart features, like Apple Pay, weather, notifications, etc. I have not read any rumors or speculation that Apple is working to fill the activity tracker feature gaps, so go with Fitbit for a while. That will probably be a safe bet for at least another couple years.
    These are some of the major AW platform gaps relative to Fitbit for activity tracking:
    • Single dashboard view with all of your current metrics. Activity and Health have very limited views. There are 3rd party apps that show some of the missing metrics, but you would need three or four apps to do what FB does on a single screen.
    • No web UI. Every other activity tracker on the market has a web UI for more complex activity presentation and analysis.
    • HR analysis (yes, there is an app for that, but it is yet one more app to load that should be in the core UI)
    • Sleep Tracking (doh, another silo app needed for the AW).
    • Calorie Tracking (one more 3rd party silo app to do what a single, integrated UI does)
    • Fitbit's battery also lasts forever compared to the AW, so it makes it a little more user friendly as a daily activity tracking wearable.
    • Challenges.
    • Social linking (Apple lets you share activity, but FB will actually engage you and report how you did against your connections).
    • Massive user base for a better social network and challenge experience.
  6. gppittjk macrumors regular

    Sep 19, 2012
    Simply put: look at Apple's hardware and software product lines vs. Fitbit's. Apple has 4 operating systems, dozens of apps, and dozens of hardware options. Fitbit has one app and a couple of hardware options. Their focus is much more specialized, so they can spend their time on their single app.
  7. lordofthereef macrumors G5


    Nov 29, 2011
    Boston, MA
    Fitbit presents the data better and allows inputting your own data much easier and conveniently IMO. Comparing days and weeks and months is also more convenient. I completely understand where you're coming from.

    There's an app out there that allows importing the data into Fitbit app that I've considered. It's $3, forgot the name, andmpeoole seem to like it. But you can't use the data to share and challenge friends so that leaves me wondering how much I actually want it.
  8. Rootus macrumors 6502

    Mar 22, 2008
    Portland, OR
    Apple also has around 100x as many employees as FitBit.
  9. james.blonden macrumors newbie

    Feb 4, 2015
    I like the workout app. Good choice of activities, and now we can 'share' a map of run or ride.
    The only think I need is the ability to export a gpx file of my ride/run to import into strava for more detailed analysis.

    Maybe if they did a web page for activity, it could have this function, then I wouldn't need to have the strava app on my watch
  10. gppittjk macrumors regular

    Sep 19, 2012
    This is true, but a single app in its ecosystem just isn't going to get the same amount of attention that Fitbit is going to provide to its app. Apple has priorities, and the single health app isn't as high on the list as Fitbit's app is to that company. It's an analogous situation to the Weather app not being as good as Carrot or WeatherUnderground, or the Stocks app not being on par with third party options, or the Mail app not being nearly as good as Spark or other third party equivalents. The list goes on - Apple's portfolio is enormous and they cannot allocate the same priority to these apps that the smaller third parties do.

    And given that this is an AW forum, let's not forget that AW is not close to Apple's big money maker. iPhone will take precedence, as it is Apple's bread and butter. None of this is to say that I'm happy with where Apple's Health app is right now: AW is my favorite Apple product and I'm all for any advancements that the company can make to it. But I do understand that, for the moment, it will take a back seat to iPhone.
  11. the future macrumors 65816

    Jul 17, 2002
    Also, for "casual fitness" (i.e. non-fanatics) the default watchOS/iOS app is just fine and not overwhelming with too many stats/details.
  12. BarracksSi Suspended


    Jul 14, 2015
    Fitbit also only sells one category of goods -- wearables -- so they need to protect their sales as much as they possibly can.

    Hence the lack of Fitbit support for their biggest competitor's wearable.

    Fitbit user: "Ya know, if the Apple Watch data synced seamlessly with Fitbit, I won't need to buy a new Charge HR..."
    Fitbit executive board: "Oh god no please don't let that happen."
  13. Badrottie Suspended


    May 8, 2011
    Los Angeles
    Apple Watch Health apps are weak and broken but Apple needs your money. That is all I guess.
  14. the future macrumors 65816

    Jul 17, 2002
    It's exactly this sort of gross exaggeration that makes it hard to take opinions seriously.
  15. SMonroe macrumors newbie

    May 12, 2016
    I had a Fitbit Surge for a couple years before getting the AW. The apps are different but I don't think I'm missing much with Health. The Fitbit dashboard was laid out nicely.

    Are you missing the social aspects of the different apps?
  16. the future macrumors 65816

    Jul 17, 2002
  17. Phil A. Moderator

    Phil A.

    Staff Member

    Apr 2, 2006
    Shropshire, UK
    I rarely use the native workout app as I find it far too limited: I use Runtastic and my watch is just used as a convenient display and heart rate monitor for Runtastic.
  18. Newtons Apple macrumors Core

    Newtons Apple

    Mar 12, 2014
    Jacksonville, Florida
    Apple is still depending on the developers to make apps. The Apple Health apps remains primitive.
  19. anthonymoody macrumors 68020


    Aug 8, 2002
    Fitbit could choose to charge for access to anyone who doesn't own one of their devices I suppose...
  20. exxxviii, Oct 13, 2016
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2016

    exxxviii macrumors 65816


    May 20, 2015
    That is a cool study. But the articles about it are a bit misleading. I bet you and most readers thought that the AW was 90% accurate and the Mio, Basis, and Fitbit were "low eighties." But that was not the outcome. I wish they could have compared more modern trackers, like the Charge 2, a Garmin with their Evolve HRM, and something like the Trio that uses a Valencell sensor. The Basis is ancient and a known HR turd.

    Valencell and Mio are often thought of as the best HRM technology makers, and the Mio was pretty much on par with the AW. That will probably surprise a few folks that Apple came in that good, while most companies that did it on their own (like FB), have struggled with wrist optical HR.
    Fitbit already gives it away for free. Has been for a couple years. You can use their mobile app with the MotionTrack chip on an iPhone.
  21. BarracksSi Suspended


    Jul 14, 2015
    Sure, but who'll pay?
  22. Fynd macrumors 6502

    Aug 11, 2010
    Lots of people, and it would cost them nothing resource wise. Anyone who paid would be a win for them. I'd pay a non-trivial fee to connect Health + Fitbit and be able to use my Watch to properly take part in challenges and the like. There's no point that I could see me replacing my Watch with a Fitbit, however.
  23. exxxviii macrumors 65816


    May 20, 2015
    Therein lies the problem with the AW. The platform lacks a fully functional, holistic mobile app and web app. Fitbit is pretty much the standard-bearer, and they will give it away for free to lure users to future device sales. Anyone that would build something awesome for the Apple Watch would need to figure out how to monetize it. If the answer to "who'll pay" is no one, then they need to sell user data to advertisers or load it with ads. Otherwise, Apple will need to build it.
  24. chillip thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Mar 16, 2013
    HealthView app is great at displaying apple health app data.
  25. BarracksSi Suspended


    Jul 14, 2015
    There's an app for that (or there has been, anyway).

    Can't remember the name because it's been over a year since I've seen people talk about it. Plus, I only know a couple people to challenge on Fitbit, and back when I paid attention, my lead over them had been kinda unfair. ;-)

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