A Fitbit device is one of the finest pieces of tech in the wearable niche. It’s cheaper than an Apple Watch, yet packed with a ton of premium features for healthy and smart lifestyle. But how long does a Fitbit last exactly?
A Fitbit can last for 24 to 36 months under normal use. The quality of the hardware, water resistance level, and battery life degrade over time. Even the reset and cleaning frequency can have an impact on your Fitbit’s overall lifespan.
I wish I could tell you that your fitness tracker or smartwatch can last for a lifetime.
But I’d be lying because, in reality, Fitbit never designed its smartwatches and fitness trackers to last longer than we know them to last.
Even with extreme caution and regular maintenance, I don’t see a Fitbit lasting longer than 5 years – unless of course you don’t wear yours on a daily basis.
How Long Does a Fitbit Last Before Replacement?
How long a Fitbit actually lasts depends on a number of factors, including the regularity of use, charging frequency, and battery optimization.
However, I found that the average lifespan of most fitness trackers and smartwatches is around 2 years, and so is a Fitbit.
It’s possible to extend the average life of the device to three or four years, but I find the two-year mark to be the sweet spot.
And let me say this:
Fitbit has done an incredible job over the years to make its technology the best it can be. With continuous improvement over the previous releases, the likes of Charge 5, Luxe, and Sense 2 are far much better than what we’ve seen before.
But even with constant improvements and new releases, the device’s components will degrade over time and require a replacement.
So if you’ve used yours for more than 18 months and you notice it’s no longer in the best condition, it shouldn’t hurt to do a replacement.
What Determines How Long a Fitbit Will Last?
Up until now, the longevity of a Fitbit device isn’t something cast in stone.
Ideally, the 18 to 24 months lifespan is my educated guess. But that’s still a good range considering the various factors that determine the life expectancy of the device.
From a practical perspective, a few factors have a direct effect on how long you can use a Fitbit device before replacement.
And they’re as follows:
1. Hardware Quality
Every new Fitbit model has had commendable hardware upgrade, a sign that the brand is in the serious business of delivering on its promise.
Take the Fitbit Versa 2, for example.
While it’s a sleek and fashionable piece of technology with exceptional features such as female health tracking, internal hardware issues have been quite a big deal.
Fitbit Sense has had great tweaks, though, making it one of the most performance efficient smartwatches from the brand’s collection.
Unfortunately, hardware failures are somewhat common, and they can ruin just how long your Fitbit fitness tracker or smartwatch will last.
Internal hardware failures are because of factors such as incorrect music streaming, dust in internal components, firmware bugs, lack of software updates, and bad battery.
Some common problems linked to hardware failures include:
- Fitbit shutting down all of a sudden
- Fitbit touchscreen not responding
- Fitbit displaying a black screen
You may begin to see these issues shortly after the 24 months of use, or earlier depending on how frequently you use the device.
Of course, you can have these issues fixed, but the best option would be to get a new device for replacement.
2. Water Resistance
Here’s the deal:
Some Fitbit models can resist water because they have a water-resistant rating of up to 5 ATM.
Then there are those whose rating are at 1 ATM, which means they can only stand up to splashes and sweat.
The brand doesn’t make its devices’ IP rating public. But they’ll tell you if a device can go in the water or otherwise.
Here’s the problem, though:
Using Fitbit in water more frequently wears down its water resistance power.
So if you’re someone who goes swimming a lot more often and you prefer to account for the laps and strokes, your Fitbit just might not last longer than 24 months before losing its water resistance.
3. Battery Health
One of the things that make Fitbit devices stand out from the competition is how long their batteries last.
You get an average of five days of battery runtime on a single charge, and that’s about three and a half days more than runtime of the mighty Apple Watch Ultra.
But there’s a caveat.
The more you use your tracker or smartwatch, or the more apps you have activated, the more likely it is the battery will drain.
For example, the built-in GPS and SmartTrack technologies enable cyclists to map routes and get accurate stats. But a Fitbit can only last for about 9 hours in GPS mode.
This brings me to my next important point:
Activating battery-draining features on your Fitbit will prompt you to frequent charging. And while that may be fine from a user’s perspective, it’s not so for the battery life expectancy.
Expect the battery shelf life to dwindle over time, and especially if you’re the kind of person that tends to overcharge their Fitbit.
4. Reset Frequency
Here’s the thing:
Resetting your Fitbit is one of the troubleshooting options to fix Fitbit problems if all other solutions fail.
After all, your smartwatch or fitness tracker may experience a problem that only a reset can fix better.
The problem is:
Resetting the device too often can cause firmware and hardware problems, making it less functional and eventually useless overtime.
Keep in mind that resetting the device requires pressing the button power. The more you press the button, the higher the chances of damaging the component because of overuse.
Taking precautionary measures such as not running too many Fitbit compatible apps can go a long way to lessen the frequency of reset. This, in turn, enhances the overall life expectancy of the device.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Do Fitbit Batteries Wear Out?
It’s possible that Fitbit batteries wear out over time.
But it will take perhaps about 16 months before you begin to notice that your Fitbit won’t hold charge anymore.
At this point, the sound conclusion is that your fitness tracker or smartwatch’s life expectancy is almost hitting a dead end, and you should therefore plan to get a new Fitbit rather than merely considering getting a new battery for replacement.
2. How Often Should You Replace a Fitbit?
There’s no right or wrong time to get a new Fitbit.
If I’m being honest, I’d say it’s entirely up to you do decide how often you’d like to replace your Fitbit.
I do find the two-year mark to be a sweet spot to get a new one, particularly because the standard life expectancy of the device is around this time.
Whether you have Inspire HR, Charge 4, Versa 2, Sense, Lite, Alta or any later version, don’t expect the life expectancy to be a lifetime.
The best thing about every model is that it delivers on the promise. And while even the Sense 2 smartwatch and Charge 5 fitness tracker have their flaws, they indeed to give you value for your money.
Of course, it would have been great if the life expectancy were more than 2 years. But for what it’s worth, even the 16 to 24 months duration is a good deal.