Today we will answer the question, “can you use Fitbit without a smartphone?” Fitbit works great without being connected to smartphones, computers, tablets, or other devices. But before I draw any conclusions, it’s important to understand that Fitbit is not completely standalone as it still needs to connect to the server at different points.
Most fitness trackers can be used separately from your smartphone. While apps and smart devices typically provide useful features for tracking your workouts and configuring your device, the software used to track steps, distance, and heart rate information is usually self-contained in most fitness watches.
Why use a fitness tracker without a smartphone?
Believe it or not, in an age of extreme dependence on technology, some people may prefer not to use their smartphones or want to limit their dependence on them. This could be for privacy concerns, financial reasons, or simply outdated!
On the other hand, you may wonder if using a fitness tracker without a smart device is possible. Most fitness trackers can be used without a smartphone, but we’ll explain scenarios in which they may not and some of the pitfalls of using a fitness tracker without a smartphone.
The truth is, this answer is highly dependent on the specific fitness device you are using or considering. You can use most fitness trackers without a smartphone, but some may require a smartphone.
Disadvantages of not using a smartphone
Many fitness trackers can track your weight training workouts and bike rides, but most only show your step stats, your current heart rate, and the distance you burned calories that day. The smartphone app also allows you to manually enter exercise information, diet details, amount of water drank, and other valuable data.
Many smartphone apps also provide sleep tracking information and can store data for up to a week or more. These details are usually only available through the application. Also, many fitness trackers don’t receive notifications on the device or allow the user to control or play music.
FAQs about the Fitbit smartwatch
How does Fitbit work without a phone?
All Fitbit devices require a mandatory Fitbit account. In the early stages of setup, you need to borrow an internet connection and protocol from an internet-capable parent device.
The official app is required to complete the setup. The good news is that it doesn’t have to be a smartphone. You can also use a tablet or computer.
Once set up, you can leave the parent device alone and use the band as planned. It continuously records data distance, calories, etc., stores it locally, and syncs it to the parent device when you are within 30 feet. Synchronization is done automatically in the background, removing the cumbersome extra layer.
The only time this may not work is when choosing a Fitbit device that doesn’t have a built-in GPS. So, if you’re going down this road, buy a watch with integrated GPS.
The Fitbit app is available on all three mobile platforms iOS, Android, and Windows. It’s safe if your phone or tablet runs on Apple iOS 12.2 or later, Android 7.0 or later, or Windows 8 Mobile or later.
For computers, there are slightly different applications. It’s called Fitbit connect. It is currently available for Windows 10 and macOS systems and can be downloaded from the official website. Scroll to the bottom of the page to the section that provides documentation for setting up different types of devices.
Do I need a Fitbit wireless sync dongle?
Suppose you have decided to use a computer for the initial setup. As long as your computer has a Bluetooth connection, that’s fine. If not, you will need to get a Bluetooth adapter. The Fitbit wireless sync dongle is recommended for Fitbit devices, but any Bluetooth adapter (LE 4.0+) should work except for Windows 8, which requires using a proprietary Fitbit dongle.
Make sure what you are getting works with your computer’s operating system. Only devices with built-in Bluetooth can be imagined in the age of technology. This is mostly a concern for desktop computers that don’t come with Bluetooth on their motherboards (especially cheaper ones).
Does Fitbit work without the internet (completely offline)?
Fitbit smartwatches do not require an active Internet connection. Taking it to the deepest wilderness will still work. The parent device needs an internet connection to sync data with the Fitbit web server.
You already know that your Fitbit uses Bluetooth to connect to your phone or computer. So, you need to turn on Bluetooth on both devices to communicate with each other.
If you decide not to connect your parent device to the internet, no data will go to your Fitbit. It may initially sound attractive in terms of privacy, but many users have experienced problems from time to time. So this is not recommended, at least on Fitbit.
Can I store music locally on my Fitbit smartwatch?
Yes, Fitbit added this feature some time ago that allows you to store music locally on your smartwatch if your watch supports it and you use the correct type of music service/license.
While it’s technically possible to use your Fitbit without a computer, phone, tablet, etc., if you want to completely disconnect from third-party data-sharing services, finding a good standalone smartwatch is a good idea.