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Fitbit Charge 5 vs. Luxe: Which should you buy?

Fitbit Charge 5 Stretching
Fitbit Charge 5 Stretching (Image credit: Fitbit)

Fitbit Charge 5

Fitbit Charge 5 Render Black

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Those seeking a new fitness tracker that's overflowing with useful features and a robust health/fitness tracking suite will appreciate the new Fitbit Charge 5. You'll never miss a detail with this tracker on your wrist. Not to mention, the new design is thinner and more attractive this time around.

Fitbit Charge 5

The whole package

GPS, HRM, NFC
SpO2 monitoring
ECG & EDA sensors
Activity/sleep tracking
Improved design
More expensive
Many features tied to Fitbit Premium

Fitbit Luxe

Fitbit Luxe Face

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Some people prefer to find a fitness tracker that's great for standard health and activity tracking, but focuses more on style than functionality. If that's what you're after, you've met your match with the Fitbit Luxe. Despite being highly attractive, you won't have advanced health-tracking, GPS, or NFC.

Fitbit Luxe

Beauty and some brains

Activity/sleep tracking
Heart-rate monitoring
Active Zone Minutes
SpO2 monitoring
Stylish design
Lacks GPS and NFC
Shorter battery life

Fitbit Charge 5 vs. Fitbit Luxe: Functionality or style?

When choosing between two fitness trackers from the same company, your final decision will depend on a few key factors. When deciding between the Fitbit Charge 5 and the Fitbit Luxe, the main question you'll have to answer is whether you care more about functionality or fashion.

While the Fitbit Luxe is undoubtedly more focused on fashion, the Fitbit Charge 5 has an all-new look that users may appreciate. With that said, the Charge 5 is much more focused on health and fitness than making a fashion statement. So if you want all the perks, including onboard GPS, NFC support for Fitbit Pay, longer battery life, and advanced health tracking, you'll be much better off with the Fitbit Charge 5.

You can have it all with the Fitbit Charge 5

If you're familiar with previous models, it only takes one quick look at the Fitbit Charge 5 to see that the company has taken a different approach this time. A quick comparison of the Charge 5 and Charge 4 proves this in many ways, especially when it comes to the physical design.

For starters, the case design is now slimmer and sleeker than past models in the Charge lineup. Additionally, you get a premium stainless steel case rather than a cheap-looking plastic one. Perhaps the most significant change is the beautiful AMOLED display, a major departure from the grayscale OLED displays.

Fitbit Charge 5Fitbit Luxe
Display0.86" AMOLED0.76" AMOLED
Sensors3-axis accelerometer, altimeter, optical heart rate sensor, SpO2, ECG, EDA, ambient light sensor3-axis accelerometer, optical heart rate monitor, SpO2 sensor
Battery life7 days5 days
Water-resistance5ATM5ATM
Active Zone Minutes✔️✔️
Onboard GPS✔️
ECG & EDA✔️
Fitbit Pay✔️

While the company has always encouraged users to consider Fitbit Premium, there seems to be more of a push for prospective Fitbit Charger 5 owners. One new feature, which will be available on other devices, such as the Daily Readiness experience.

The goal is to offer a better understanding of when to rest and when to work out. These details can be accessed via the Fitbit mobile app every morning. Users will receive a personalized score based on their activity, heart rate variability (HRV), and sleep history. You'll need a Fitbit Premium subscription to use the Daily Readiness feature. If it's any consolation, the company offers a six-month free trial to users who buy the Charge 5.

The EDA and ECG sensors are new to the Fitbit Charge 5.

The advanced EDA (electrodermal activity) and ECG (electrocardiogram) sensors are new to the Fitbit Charge 5. The company first introduced these on the Fitbit Sense smartwatch last year. It's clear that Fitbit is trying to offer these advanced health sensors on fitness trackers rather than limiting them to smartwatches.

If you're not familiar with the EDA and ECG sensors, these features will be most beneficial to health enthusiasts who want to monitor deeper aspects of their well-being. The EDA sensor lets you measure your temperature and stress levels more accurately. The ECG sensor enables you to record a reading designed to detect irregular heartbeats. Unfortunately, while the EDA feature is available at launch, the ECG app will not be available until post-launch in select countries.

Track the basics with the fashionable Fitbit Luxe

Fitbit Luxe Relax

Source: Courtney Lynch / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Courtney Lynch / Android Central)

Some health and fitness enthusiasts might be seeking a more straightforward tracker without all the extras. However, if you're also on the hunt for a stylish design that's ideal for any occasion, the Fitbit Luxe may draw you in. The company launched this tracker to focus on health and wellness, but the versatile and gorgeous design stole the show.

Not all fitness trackers offer fashionable looks, so the Fitbit Luxe will be an attractive option if that's high on your priority list. You also get a lightweight case made of premium stainless steel material. The Luxe comes with a lovely AMOLED display, but it's rather tiny due to the compact design of the tracker.

The Fitbit Luxe battery only lasts for five days.

The Fitbit Luxe bands are interchangeable so that you can switch up your look pretty quickly. The Fitbit Luxe battery will only last for five days, which isn't as great as the seven-day battery life on the Fitbit Charge 5.

So, where do health and wellness come into play? Fitbit is offering critical stress management and mindfulness tools on the Luxe. For example, users will receive a stress management score that provides a daily assessment of their body's ability to deal with stress. The stress management score is based on heart rate, activity levels, and sleep patterns.

Fitbit Luxe 4

Source: Jeramy Johnson / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Jeramy Johnson / Android Central)

The Fitbit Luxe also uses the company's Health Metrics dashboard feature, which can be accessed in the Fitbit mobile app. Users will receive an in-depth overview of key metrics, including heart rate variability (HRV), breathing rate, and resting heart rate (RHR). You'll be able to view these metrics over a week, too. If you're planning to take advantage of the free 6-month Fitbit Premium trial that also comes with the Luxe, you'll have access to track your monthly trends and personal ranges.

Again, you'll have several familiar features that Fitbit offers on most of its wearables, including 24/7 heart-rate monitoring, activity/sleep tracking, female-health tracking, stress monitoring, guided breathing, and 20 exercise modes with SmartTrack exercise recognition. Fitbit also says that skin temperature readings and blood oxygen monitoring will be coming soon to the Luxe.

Unfortunately, there are a few drawbacks to the stylish device. You won't have onboard GPS, so you'll need to bring your phone with you to track your route during a workout. You also won't have NFC support for Fitbit Pay, which means no contactless payments. Advanced health features such as EDA and ECG sensors are not available on the Luxe, either. It might be cheaper than the Charge 5, but it's still relatively expensive for the features that it lacks. If the design is one of your main reasons for buying it, you might not be bothered by these drawbacks.

Fitbit Charge 5 vs. Fitbit Luxe: Which should you buy?

Fitbit Charge 5 Outdoor Hike

Source: Fitbit (Image credit: Source: Fitbit)

The best way to decide between the Fitbit Charge 5 and Fitbit Luxe is to consider your priorities. As a true style icon, the Fitbit Luxe is designed for fashionable users seeking a tracker that can handle the basics. You get decent battery life, a bright AMOLED display, and an attractive design. However, you won't have GPS, NFC, or advanced health sensors. If these perks aren't a priority in your mind, then the Fitbit Luxe may just be a good fit for you.

Those who want as many health sensors and smartwatch features as possible will likely prefer the Fitbit Charge. It's a bit more expensive than the Fitbit Luxe, but for all the extras, some users may be willing to stretch their budget a bit farther. In addition to a premium design and larger AMOLED display, the Fitbit Charge 5 also boasts onboard GPS, NFC payments, advanced health sensors, and longer battery life. So if you want the whole package in a fitness tracker, the Fitbit Charge 5 is the way to go.

Courtney Lynch is a freelance writer at Android Central. She's obsessed with all things health, fitness, and music. At any given time, she can be found checking out the latest and greatest gadgets while simultaneously petting her dog and sipping iced coffee.