Gifting smart health/fitness devices can be really thoughtful and helpful but sometimes it can be tricky to figure out which one to pick. Below we’ve got a roundup of great options for everyone from those just getting started to super fit family or friends.
The first three smart health/fitness devices I wanted to highlight below range from a few smart scale options, blood pressure monitor, to a pocket-sized metabolic analyzer that works with iPhone and Apple Health.
If you’re considering gifting a wearable, we’ll finish up by covering some tips to help you decide whether a smartwatch or more basic and affordable fitness band is a better fit (as well as how something like Apple Watch compares with Garmin/Suunto and even Google’s Wear OS).
Best smart health/fitness devices 2020 gift guide
Withings Smart Scales
I’ve been using a Withings Smart Scale for going on seven years and it’s been really reliable and useful. The reason I recommend going for Withings over other options is it’s a company with a solid track record, a good iOS app with Apple Health integration, and durable/good looking build quality. Withings currently has three models for pretty much any budget and need.
Withings Body Smart Scale
For those just getting started on a health and fitness journey, the Body Withings Smart Scale is a great choice. It offers weight and BMI, automatic syncing with the iOS app, and automatically recognizes up to 8 users. It usually goes for around $60.
Body+ Smart Scale
If the person you’re looking to buy for is further along in their fitness journey or would enjoy more data, the Withings Body+ Smart Scale adds body composition measurements. That includes fat, muscle, and bone mass, as well as water percentage. Body+ goes for around $99.
If you want to go for the top of the line option, the Withings Body Cardio offers all of the features of Body+ like full body composition and adds in heart rate monitoring. It usually sells for around $150.
You can check out the full Withings Smart Scale lineup here.
Withings Blood Pressure Monitor
I have an old version of Withings Blood Pressure Monitor that still works great and the current model is even more impressive. You’re getting a wireless experience, rechargeable battery that lasts for up to 6 months, it’s FDA cleared as medically accurate and you can easily send results to your doctor.
Since it works with the Withings Health Mate app like the smart scale above, you get Apple Health integration and can see all your other data in one place.
The Withings Blood Pressure Monitor retails for $99.
Lumen metabolic analyzer
This will be a neat option for someone in your life that already has most of the smart health/fitness devices on the market. While those really into fitness may be the most likely to appreciate a metabolic analyzer, Lumen is a really useful tool that anyone can use to achieve goals like losing weight, building muscle, or maintaining weight.
I did a full review of Lumen earlier this year and think it’s a really innovative device that offers super actionable data. What you’re getting is a pocket-sized metabolic analyzer that can tell you if you’re burning fat or carbs based on your breath. From there, the Lumen app gives meal planning/macro recommendations to meet your specific weight loss or fitness goals.
Another big aspect of Lumen is measuring and building metabolic flexibility. And research shows there are a wide variety of health benefits beyond just changing your body composition. They include better sleep, stronger immune system, more consistent blood sugar levels, improved workout performance, and more.
If you’re looking for a gift for someone who enjoys the quantified self, this is a killer gift.
Lumen is normally priced at $349 but is going for $279 during the holidays.
Smartwatch comparison overview
Apple Watch, Wear OS, Garmin, fitness bands compared
If you’re thinking of picking up a smartwatch or fitness band for someone for the holidays, there are lots of choices, so here are some TL;DR tips to narrow down what to look at for each type:
- Lots of functionality (e.g. Messages, Maps, email, fitness tracking, heart rate monitoring, ECG, much much more
- Completely integrated with iPhone
- Single-day battery life (rated for 18 hours can be more or less depending on use)
- Many finishes to choose from especially when considering Apple Watch bands/straps
- Solid for general some specific fitness tracking, not as ideal for marathons, ultra runners, and other multi-day fitness events
- Price: Usually $199 and up
Be sure to check out my colleague Chance’s comparison here for more on the differences between Apple Watch models:
Garmin and Suunto: Dedicated GPS, long battery life, more
If you’re looking for a gift for an endurance athlete or someone who values dedicated GPS, a Suunto or Garmin smartwatch may be the best fit.
- Usually, full smartwatches from these companies include battery life of 7 days or more
- Dedicated GPS for tracking workouts, bikes, runs, etc. without cellular data or an iPhone in your pocket
- Ideal for marathons, ultra runners, triathletes, and other endurance athletes
- Durable build quality
- Keep in mind these often are running on Google’s Wear OS
If the person you’re gifting is an Android user, it will probably be best to go for Wear OS (or a band-style fitness tracker).
- Very wide selection of styles
- Made to work with Android smartphones
- Wide range of price points
Check out our sister site 9to5Google’s round ups of best Wear OS smartwatches:
Band-style fitness trackers
These are a good option if you’re looking for something more affordable and basic in overall functionality.
- Slim profile
- Usually include step and activity tracking, some include sleep tracking
- Overall less functionally than Apple Watch or other smartwatches
- Often Long 7 days+ battery life
- Most are $100 or less
Smart health/fitness devices wrap-up
Hopefully, you’ve now got some great ideas on what you’d like to gift the person (or people) who could use a smart health/fitness device.
If you’re interested in diving more into Apple Watch and health/fitness, be sure to check out 9to5Mac’s Watch Time podcast.