Last updated: August 9, 2021

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How many steps did I take today? How many calories did I burn today? Have I topped my previous mileage? Whether during sports, everyday life or even while sleeping - fitness trackers with GPS are becoming increasingly popular! But as versatile as our lifestyle is, the selection of fitness trackers is now just as versatile.

What is important when buying a fitness tracker with GPS, for which purposes they are suitable and which fitness trackers we can recommend to you, we explain in this guide in the big fitness tracker test 2022.




Summary

  • Fitness trackers with GPS are used to record and evaluate your health and fitness. They are available in all price ranges and with a wide range of features and functions that adapt to your individual needs depending on the equipment.
  • When buying, pay attention to the compatibility with your smartphone - not every operating system is suitable for all fitness trackers with GPS!
  • Modern fitness trackers with GPS often come with a wide range of basic features - but if you're more of a professional than an amateur, you should keep an eye on your tracker's capabilities.

The Best Fitness Tracker With GPS: Our Picks

Fitness Tracker with GPS: Buying and review criteria

Not convinced yet? If you would prefer to search for a suitable fitness tracker with GPS yourself, our buying and evaluation criteria can help you. Simply apply them to your personal ideas and needs.

Available functions and features

The most common features available on most fitness trackers today are heart rate monitoring, activity recording and sleep tracking. Pulse and heart rate measurement are one and the same function, even if one or the other is specified depending on the manufacturer.

Depending on how precisely you want to track your fitness, there are many different functions that your fitness tracker can have.

Your heart rate is continuously tracked to help you get an even better overview of your calorie consumption and achieve your health goals.

The activity recording is also called activity tracking or activity zone measurement and records your activity times per day. Depending on the model, this includes, for example, a step counter or the indication of the kilometres covered

Sleep tracking measures and evaluates your movements during the night. The fitness tracker categorises your movements and assigns them to the four sleep phases: falling asleep, light sleep, deep sleep and REM phase.

By wearing it at night, you can determine the duration and quality of your night's rest.

Fitness Tracker mit GPS-1

Fitness trackers come in all sizes, shapes and colours. Which tracker is right for you depends on your needs.
(Image source: Nikita Kostrykin / unsplash)

Other features include an integrated camera function, a voice assistant and compatibility with your smartphone's mailing and calendar function.

Number of available sports modes

The number of available sport modes allows you to record your fitness data even more precisely. Depending on the brand and model, a certain number of modes are pre-installed on your fitness tracker. Other fitness trackers require a specific app to add the sports that are relevant to you.

Depending on the fitness tracker, the number of sports can vary from a few everyday sports such as football, jogging or walking to 14, 20 or more sports. If you are involved in a particular unusual sport, you should find out in advance whether it is available for your fitness tracker with GPS.

For all water sports in particular, waterproofness is highly relevant, in addition to the various sport modes. Read more about the criterion "waterproofness" below.

Duration of battery life

Normally, the more expensive the model, the longer the battery life. As always, exceptions prove the rule. You will find devices with a battery life of about 3-5 days, devices with a battery life of 7-10 days or, in exceptional cases, even devices with a battery life of up to 20+ days.

Are you active in sports, do you spend several days away from the nearest power outlet or do you simply want to charge your tracker as little as possible? Then you should pay special attention to the battery life of your device!

In general, fitness trackers are designed to last as long as possible without a charging interval. Especially if you want to track your health holistically, you want to wear your device as continuously as possible. Therefore, when making your decision, pay attention to the manufacturer's specifications regarding battery life.

Charging method and duration

In addition to battery life, charging type and duration are also important criteria when deciding on your fitness tracker with GPS.

Charging times vary between about 30 minutes and 2-4 hours, depending on the model.

Do you only need it for sports? Then you can leave it on the couch for several hours in the evening without any problems. If you want to track your fitness as a whole, you should choose a model that only requires a short charging time.

When it comes to charging methods, a distinction is made between USB charging cables and a magnetic charging system, where you place your tracker on a magnetic pad. However, the most common charging version is USB charging.

Waterproof

Clearly, any good fitness tracker with GPS should be waterproof! Otherwise, sweat or rain can damage your tracker and limit its functionality over time. If you want to swim or dive with your fitness tracker, you have to look even closer. But be careful: waterproof is not the same as waterproof!

Roughly speaking, waterproof models are resistant to sweat and rain. However, you should not shower, swim or dive with such models. Waterproof models, on the other hand, are also suitable for swimming and diving.

But how can you tell if the fitness tracker of your choice is waterproof or water-resistant? Manufacturers often indicate the water resistance of their products in units of

  1. ATM 3
  2. ATM 5
  3. ATM 10

Sometimes the waterproofness is also indicated with the IP protection class. You can recognise such a tracker by the designation "IP67", for example.

On the internet, you can find tables where you can easily read what is hidden behind the cryptic IP value of your fitness tracker with GPS. The front number indicates the general protection against foreign bodies, the back number the waterproofness. Products in the "IP68" category are waterproof - you can swim and dive with them.

The unit ATM basically indicates the same as the IP value, but is not as accurate. Fitness trackers with 3 ATM are very water sensitive, those with a 5 ATM rating are water resistant. Fitness trackers with 10 ATM are suitable for swimming, and you can dive with devices with 20 ATM or more.

Compatibility with your smartphone / operating system

Not every fitness tracker with GPS is suitable for every smartphone or operating system. Often, even fitness trackers in the lower price range are compatible with Android and Apple's ios operating system. However, if you have a mobile phone of the less common brands such as Huawei or Xiaomi, you should read carefully whether you can use the fitness tracker.

Another important point is the compatibility of your fitness tracker and different fitness apps. Not all apps that can be used with your tracker can also be downloaded from the app shop of your mobile phone manufacturer!

Fitness Tracker with GPS: Frequently asked questions and answers

Here we would like to answer some questions that we are often asked in connection with the purchase of a fitness tracker with GPS.

Who is a fitness tracker with GPS suitable for?

First of all, a fitness tracker with GPS is suitable for anyone who wants to know their personal fitness and health status.

Fitness Tracker mit GPS-2

When buying a fitness tracker with GPS, make sure that it fits your needs and is comfortable to wear. (Image source: Solen Feyissa / unsplash)

The GPS function makes it possible to determine the speed and distance of the kilometres covered even without a connected smartphone. Which specific functions your fitness tracker should have depends on your individual needs.

What types of fitness trackers with GPS are available?

An important point when deciding on a fitness tracker with GPS is the type of display. Depending on which display you choose, this will have an impact on the battery life, for example.

Display type advantage disadvantage
LCD high resolution,cheap needs backlight(energy)
OLED / AMOLED higher resolution, high contrast expensive

What does a fitness tracker with GPS cost?

Depending on the features and brand of the fitness tracker, the price can vary significantly. In the table below, we present examples of the price and scope of a fitness tracker with higher, medium and lower prices.

Price range scope
Luxury 10-day battery life, many functions, music, AMOLED display, waterproof to 5 ATM, many sports modes
Mid-range medium battery life, many functions, waterproof to 3 ATM
Basic model short battery life of approx. 5 days, few functions, only basic sports, waterproof, LCD display

What alternatives are there to a fitness tracker with GPS?

The following table provides information about those devices that can be used instead of a fitness tracker with GPS.

Alternative Advantage Disadvantage
Smart watch in addition to fitness, many features of a mobile phone such as banking etc. more expensive, primarily not only intended for fitness (inaccurate)
Fitness apps on mobile phones everyone already has a mobile phone, apps often free / very cheap tracking via mobile phone not convenient

Conclusion

With so many fitness trackers to choose from, it's understandable if you can't decide on a product right away and can't see the "forest for the trees". With this guide, we would like to give you an overview of the many different types and features of fitness trackers and make your decision a little easier.

Whether you need a premium product with many different features or a basic model without bells and whistles is sufficient depends largely on one criterion: you! If you are an extreme athlete with a strict training plan, you need a model that fits your lifestyle and delivers a lot of performance.

For the morning run with the dog or the weekly bike ride, you might be better off with a simpler model. Whatever you decide, we wish you lots of fun and success with your fitness tracker with GPS!

Image source: rioblanco/ 123rf

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