Fitbit today unveiled the Fitbit Blaze smart fitness watch at its CES 2016 press conference in Las Vegas. Compared with the previous Fitbit Surge, the Blaze more obviously takes inspiration from the Apple Watch.
“One of the first things we learned in this industry is that fitness is personal – and if something isn’t your style, you won’t wear it,” a Fitbit press release quotes James Park, co-founder and CEO of Fitbit, as saying. It’s clear that Fitbit took this to heart, as the slim design of the Blaze includes the ability to swap out frames and bands as well as the clock faces of the gadget’s touchscreen. Not all of these will be available at launch, but some of those include genuine leather, elastomer and stainless steel link bands.
In addition to the typical app-enabled watch and Fitbit offerings like automated sleep tracking and notifications, the Fitbit Blaze is more generally tuned to help keep track of the user’s fitness. For example, the FitStar Personal Trainer delivers on-screen guided workouts with animated images, and the connected GPS works to provides real-time statistics on data like distance, pace and more.
There’s also PurePulse, which provides wrist-based heart rate tracking to maintain workout intensity and the like. This works even better while alerting the Blaze to defined sports like yoga, biking and so on, so that detailed statistics can be provided on this specific activities. Even when not set to a specific sport, the Blaze is designed to automatically recognize and record certain activities to continuously maintain fitness tracking as best as possible.
The Fitbit Blaze is scheduled to launch in March 2016 and is available to preorder now for $199.95 from Fitbit.com. It should be available to preorder at several North American retailers tomorrow, including Amazon, Best Buy and Target.