It’s finally that time of year again where we’re subjected to burly blokes removing their t-shirts and women of all ages revealing all as the sun comes out and shines down on the gloomy United Kingdom for our annual week of summer. If you’re a nerdy recluse like me then you’d probably rather close the curtains and stay indoors, but there are some people out there who actually enjoy the sun as well as something I’m not too familiar with; exercise (??).

Ah yes, the activity which involves you actually doing something physical in order to lose weight or shape up. As you’ve probably worked out by now it’s not really my thing, but if it’s your thing you should really check out the FitBit Zip. This tiny pebble-like device will help any fitness buff keep track of their activities using both the built-in pedometer and the companion app.

fitbit1At a glance The Fitbit Zip is priced at a rather high £50 for something that is essentially a pedometer but there is a little more to it than that. The Fitbit is a dinky little device that relays certain bits of information back at you when you tap it, there’s your pedometer which shows you how many steps you’ve taken, a calorie counter which shows you how much you’ve burned, a distance tracker which roughly estimates the distance you’ve traveled, and an adorable smiley face which gets progressively happier the more active you are, if you’re un-active it just sits there mocking you with it’s tongue out.

Along with the Fitbit comes the tiniest USB dongle for you to sync the device with your computer and the Fitbit Universe. Once you’ve registered for a free account and installed the tiny bit of software in order for you to sync to your account, you’re given much more detailed information on the activity you’ve done. You can also – if you choose – enter the food you’ve eaten throughout the day. The Fitbit experience is entirely as in depth as you choose. If you’d like to just track your calories and steps you can, if you want to go full on fitness you can enter your food intake for the day to measure exactly the amount of calories you burned that day.

fitbit4The Fitbit also has a companion app which has most of the functionality of the website and it also lets you sync your activity to your account – if it works. This is something we struggled to do as the Fitbit app and the Zip didn’t recognise each other.

Now as you’ve probably worked out I’m not the most active cookie, but I did take the little bugger out with us for a walk around London, y’know for review purposes. The Fitbit comes as a small little pebble, but as you can see in the pictures it also comes with a little clip accessory. At an already small 35.5 x 28 x 9.65mm size the clip doesn’t really add that much more. The clip itself is a rubbery silicone case which the Fitbit fits snugly inside. In terms of using the clip it attaches itself to almost anything really securely and because of it’s size it’s hardly noticeable and you could actually find yourself forgetting about it!

The Fitbit was also a godsend in London as both mine and my wives phones had ran out of juice. We had no idea what the time was as I’d forgotten to put my watch on in the morning so when we realised that one of Fitbits screens also shows the time we were relieved and didn’t end up missing our train home.

fitbit2So moving back onto the price, £50 might seem a lot for such a small device, but you’re not just paying for the accurate technology found inside the Fitbit, you’re paying for the use of the Fitbit network and it’s various functions available to those who want to live a more active lifestyle. Touching back on the website functionality it’s full of records and achievements in order to challenge yourself further as well as rewarding you with a little accolade when you’ve done 10,000 steps for example. It also makes you aware when you were most active so you can touch upon those times where you could have done more.

Finally to power the Fitbit it requires one of those flat CMOS battery-type batteries, a CR 2025 which Fitbit say will last you around 4-6 months. It comes with one in the box, but if you do eventually use it up you can buy them on most high streets for pittance.

Overall the Fitbit Zip is a brilliant appcessory for those who want to lead a more active lifestyle. It’s not only just a pedometer with a few extra bells and whistles, it’s a full-on community and activity tracker if you want to utilise both the website and the companion app. If you’re not too into that then you don’t actually have to go so in-depth with it, you could just use it as a pedometer – it is what you want it to be. The Fitbit Zip is tiny, light, and discreet, especially for those who feel a little self concious about losing weight or getting in shape, setting it up is easy and once you’re done it doesn’t take much thinking about.

If you want to buy your own Fitbit Zip you can grab one from Mobile Fun who have a whole range of Fitbit devices on sale.

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