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Gadget review: Fitbit Ace is a seriouis smartwatch for kids – New Zealand Herald

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What is it?

Fitbit’s latest smart watch isn’t for gym junkies, trail runners or step counters. It’s for kids. The Fitbit Ace is a step counter, sleep tracker and exercise incentivizer for kids aged eight-plus. Luckily, my son is exactly that age, so, much to his delight, I strapped a blue Fitbit Ace on him and let him give it a go.

How does it work? The Ace is a similar watch to the Alta, with a slim face and strap designed for small wrists. We charged it up for a couple of hours, strapped it on, and he headed off to school. When he returned, he’d easily reached his step count. In fact, he’s reached it every day he’s worn it. And he loves to show off to me about it.

What’s the best thing about it? The gadget factor for sure. I watched my son’s classmates crowd around him at school and fire questions at him the first few days he wore it. The novelty’s worn off but he still loves checking his stats through the Fitbit App on my phone. It’s also great for checking his sleep patterns: on a normal night, he gets around 10 hours. During a recent school sleepover, he got just six. No wonder he was a write-off.

And what’s the worst? My son’s a little bit obsessed with his Ace, and I’ve had to tell him to stop tapping the screen to check his step count every few minutes, especially at the dinner table. But he’s certainly more interested in how many steps he racks up when he plays soccer at school or heads off to dance class. It’s definitely made him moniter how much he gets out and about.

The Fitbit Ace, a smartwatch for kids.
The Fitbit Ace, a smartwatch for kids.

What does an eight-year-old think?

“What I liked about this Fitbit is that when you reach 10,000 steps it buzzes. My best is 14,000. The worst thing is that if you wear it at night, your parents can see how you sleep. It also tells you the time, how much battery it has, and how much exercise you do if you go out for a walk. It’s cool.”

So how much is it? The Fitbit Ace comes in two colours, purple and blue, and retails for $149.95. Make sure that strap’s done up securely: at that price it’s an expensive kids’ watch, one you don’t want coming loose in the school playground.

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