Earlier this year, Fitbit had to recall its Force fitness tracker after users reported that it caused skin irritation, and we haven't heard much about a replacement since then. But a report from Gizmodo today (Oct. 14) suggests Fitbit could be ditching the Force altogether and coming out with two new fitness trackers: the Charge and the Charge HR.
Leaked product and marketing images show two new models of Fitbit trackers that greatly resemble the Force. The Charge's features list appears to be similar to that of the Force with a few improvements, including step, distance, calories and floor tracking; sleep monitoring; a silent, vibrating alarm; stats, time, and caller ID displays and water-resistant hardware.
What seems to set the Charge HR apart is a heart-rate monitoring feature, which has been noticeably absent from all of Fitbit's other trackers. It was previously speculated that Fitbit's new device could be called PurePulse, but now it seems like that's the system by which Fitbit is using to continuously track heart rate in the Charge HR.
In addition to the leaked images, new FCC and patent files confirm the Fitbit Charge name and approve a new "wireless activity tracker" for the company. Gizmodo reports that a Russian retail website is listing the Charge and Charge HR at $185 and $220, respectively. Considering the Force was only $130, those prices seem a bit steep, even with the Charge HR's supposed heart rate monitoring feature.
The leak doesn't mention anything about the internal hardware powering the new fitness trackers, nor does it mention anything about battery life. Hopefully Fitbit has managed to fix the industrial design issue that caused irritation to Force wearers; added features will be a welcomed bonus, but we'll have to see if they're worth the higher price tag.