Would you like to lose weight? Improve your fitness? Or do you want to build muscles? To monitor the changes in your body, you will need a smart weighing scale. The Fitbit Aria can do more than just display your weight: With intelligent functions and a WLAN connection, the scale wants to support you on your way to your dream figure.
- 1 Fitbit Aria Personal scale: First impressions
- 2 Fitbit Aria 2 – Digital wireless smart scale
- 3 Comparing Fitbit Aria and Aria 2
- 4 Aria Air: Fitbit presents a smart scale at a low price
Visually, the Fitbit Aria makes a very elegant impression at first glance: slim and white, the design is characterized by modern straight lines. For those who like it darker, the scales are also available in black. It is 31.2 cm long and wide and 33.4 mm high. With a weight of 1.93 kg, the scale itself is rather lightweight. The polished glass surface gives the scale an elegant appearance that fits into any bathroom, bedroom or fitness room or wherever you want to weigh yourself. The hard glass surface makes a robust impression, as does the ABS underside.
The round LCD display with back light is not very large with a diameter of 5.5 cm, but it is clearly visible. It displays weight, body fat percentage and user selection. You can opt to display the weight in kilograms, pounds, or stones. The measurement ranges from nine to 158 kilograms. For operation, the scale requires four AA batteries that they include in the package. According to Fitbit, splashing water doesn’t bother the scale. However, you should not immerse Aria in water.
There is also a warning from the manufacturer: You should not use the Aria scale if you wear a pacemaker or are pregnant, as the scale conducts electricity through the body to measure body fat. The WLAN scale is also not suitable for children under the age of ten. The ideal operating temperature for the scale is between 0 and 56 degrees centigrade.
The times when weighing scales simply displayed the weight are long gone. The Fitbit Aria now wants to be a little more intelligent than other scales. It shows the weight, body mass index (BMI), lean mass, body fat percentage and records these values. The Aria measures the weight with the help of four load cells. It determines the BMI based on height and weight and calculates the body fat percentage using a bio-impedance analysis. The scale itself does not provide any information about your historical weight; It uses the Fitbit Dashboard for this purpose.
If you would like to find out how your body has progressed, you can have your successes displayed in easy-to-understand diagrams and curves in the Fitbit Dashboard. Access is via computer or app via smartphone and tablet. The scale is WLAN-enabled and can therefore synchronize statistics wirelessly with all devices. Fitbit Aria is also compatible with fitness trackers such as the Fitbit Charge. So you can set goals and achieve them with the help of a calorie coach.
Fitbit Aria is suitable for the whole family: it recognizes up to eight users. The scale automatically differentiates between them based on the values determined. As long as the weight and body fat percentage of the users differ from each other, this profiling works without problems. Don’t want to share your measurements with other users? No problem, the Aria keeps them under lock and key.
Fitbit dashboard and synchronization
The advantage of an intelligent WLAN scale is that you always keep an eye on your body composition and weight changes. The Fitbit Dashboard, which you can also use, for example, with the Fitbit Charge fitness bracelet, serves this purpose. Here you enter your goals and get insights using diagrams and curves, which show the development of your weight and your body fat percentage. The Aria scale synchronizes wirelessly via WLAN with all devices on which you want to call up the Fitbit Dashboard, for example with your desktop computer, tablet, or smartphone. It uses the WLAN standard 802.11b and a 2.4 GHz network. The network is WEP/WPA/WPA2 encrypted. The Fitbit Aria works with the following operating systems and devices:
- Windows XP and higher or Mac OS X 10.5 and higher
- iPhone 4S and higher
- iPad 3 Gen. and higher
- Current Android and Windows devices
Thanks to constant synchronization, you can evaluate your data anytime and anywhere. If the connection to the Internet is interrupted, the scale saves the weighing results and forwards them later.
So you have the possibility to keep all your food and activities up to date. With your smartphone, you have the possibility to access your data on your mobile phone via the Fitbit app. As soon as it updates the data in your account, you can also find it in the Fitbit app, which automatically synchronizes itself with your account.
With the Fitbit app you can record your daily food taken, your activities and much more and track them in a colorful statistic. Below, I summarize what things you can track with it:
- Heartbeat/pulse rate
- Blood pressure readings
- Blood sugar levels
Those who like can also publish their values on Facebook, Twitter or WordPress and share them with their friends. It can set all data to private, for those who don’t like to show it publicly.
As already described, the round display of the Fitbit Aria is somewhat small. This also means that the scale does not display more than one measurement result at a time – however, App and Fitbit Dashboard are available for this purpose. The letters and numbers displayed are big and easy to read. However, reading the long continuous texts, which are also displayed on the scale, becomes a bit cumbersome.
First time use
If the scale is connected with the WLan network, you simply stand on the scale with bare feet. The scale lights up immediately as soon as you are on it and there are no keys to press. Immediately Fitbit Aria shows you your weight and your body fat percentage. And that’s it, your data is now transmitted to fitbit.com via WLan and can be viewed online immediately afterwards.
To connect automatically and wirelessly to the device of your choice, you can access the setup settings either via your computer or via the Fitbit App on your smartphone or tablet. The setup is simple and intuitive and the initial installation is done in a few moments.
The measurement results
A good personal scale should display the weight and body fat percentage as accurately as possible. In a direct comparison with other scales, the accuracy of the Fitbit Aria is convincing for weight determination and the deviations are in the gram range. If you climb on the Aria scale several times in a row, it shows minimal weight fluctuations.
The scale determines the body fat percentage by bio-impedance analysis, i.e. conducts minimal current through the body, measures the resistance and calculates the fat percentage from this. There is not a handheld device, so the Aria scale only conducts the current from one foot to the other. This measurement is less accurate than the measurement with an additional handle, since the fat content of the upper body is not taken into account and is only estimated. However, the accuracy of the results suffices to show the development of the body fat percentage over a long period.
Tips for weighing
Finally, a few general tips on weighing:
- Place the Fitbit Aria on a level surface without carpet.
- Step on the scale without shoes or socks.
- Always weigh yourself at the same time of day (preferably in the morning before breakfast) and undressed.
- Daily weight fluctuations are normal. To prevent frustration, weigh yourself once a week on a certain day of the week.
Connected gadgets are taking a prominent place in our daily lives. Connected wristbands like the Flex 2, connected watches like the Ionic, the Versa or the Vívoactive 3, intelligent assistants like Amazon Echo, they are there and gradually become indispensable, or almost so. Now let’s discuss another kind of connected device, namely the Fitbit Aria 2 smart scale that succeeds Aria 1.
Aria 2 – First impressions
Aria 2 comes to us in a box barely larger than the scale, simple but elegant. On the front panel, we have a visual of the model, white here, as well as some information about the product. We learn in particular that it calculates your weight and BMI, the percentage of fat and lean body mass, trends and graphs, wireless synchronization as well as the possibility of making up to 8 different profiles. This information will of course be sent via Bluetooth to your smartphone, equipped with the Fitbit application.
We are also told that this product should not be used if you are pregnant or carrying a pacemaker or any other medical implant. The scale is also not suitable for children under 13 years of age and may be slippery if the surface is wet. As the tray is made of glass, care must also be taken not to break it.
- Power supply: 3 AA batteries
- Compatibility: iOS/Android
- Wi-Fi: yes
- Bluetooth: yes
- Display: LCD screen
- Dimensions (H x W x D): 31.2 x 31.2 x 3.3 cm
- Weight: 1.93 kg
- Units: kg, lbs
- Maximum mass: 181 kg
Once the scale is unpacked, setting up is very easy, intuitive, and fast. First, remove the small tab at the back of the battery cover. Then download the application if you have not already done so. Once your scale is on, search for it on your Smartphone or tablet. Once found, it will ask you to configure your WiFi and weigh yourself, not to mention entering the 4-digit code that will appear on your scale screen. You will also have to choose a small icon among several cute ones, which, once chosen, will be your avatar.
Fitbit advises you to weigh yourself every day at a more or less fixed time to follow the progression of your weight as closely as possible, preferably in the morning. You can choose several objectives: lose weight, gain weight, or maintain yourself. Once the configuration is complete, place your scale where you want it.
Aria 2 is compatible with over 200 iOS, Android, or Windows devices. The body of the Fitbit Aria 2 smart balance is made of tempered glass and is available in two colors: white or black. It is square shaped with rounded edges, simple but elegant, which measures 31.2 cm by 31.2 cm. Its thickness is 33.4 mm and its weight is 1.93 kg. Power is supplied by three AA batteries, which will be provided.
Usage and functions
Leading a sedentary lifestyle, since I work from home and despite my 40 minutes of sports activities five times a week and a balanced diet, I was struggling to lose weight and therefore, I was rather ignoring my old standard scale. On the other hand, with precise monitoring and coupled with my connected Fitbit watch, the motivation is even greater. Having everything centralized on a single application and seeing my progress over the days is all the more motivating and rewarding over time, especially if you add to that the Fitbit Coach, which I will talk about in a much more detail later on.
On the operations side, nothing could be easier. Step on the scale, wait for the weighing. If the small screen displays your icon, for me, a small cat, it is because it recognizes you. Then step off the scale and wait for synchronization to occur. If you have a question mark displayed, showing “guest”, don’t panic. It will ask you if you are a guest or not. If the user icon that appears is yours, press the right side of the scale with your foot. If the user icon is not yours, press the left side of the scale. Whether it is for beginners, trainers or athletes, it is really a child’s play. I have not yet encountered any synchronization problems.
Fitbit Coach and follow-up
With a connected scale, a connected watch, and my desire to lose a few kilos, I let myself be tempted by the Fitbit Coach program, a paid personalized sports program. After you have logged into your Fitbit account, you will have a choice of several programs: slimming (the one you choose), daily dose, fitness, and power. To start, you will have a training session and then your program will start. You will not only need to record each exercise as perfect, too easy, brutal, but also indicate the time you have lasted. So your program will adapt to your abilities and that’s great. If you have Chromecast as a bonus, you will have the possibility to cast the videos directly on your TV. However, there are some minor caveats. The phone remains unlocked on the application even while casting. As a result, the screen remains on for the duration of your sports session and rapidly discharges your battery. Even if it is good to give feedback to each of the exercises so that the program adapts, it is a little embarrassing to stop every 30 seconds to give a response.
I was following the slimming program, recommended four times a week. Not wanting to change my little habits, I do the training 5 times a week, from Monday to Friday, usually in the middle of the afternoon. Result after 2 weeks: -1kg on the scale.
You will also have the opportunity to record what you eat. So besides knowing your weight, your fat and lean body mass and your sporting activity, you will also know if you are eating more than you need.
Comparing Fitbit Aria and Aria 2
Six years after the first Aria, Fitbit brought a cautious update of the popular smart scale with the Aria 2 at the end of 2017. The basic concept has not changed; the scale can still measure and display weight and body fat. In combination with the Fitbit App, the Body Mass Index (BMI) can be calculated.
Differences Aria and Aria 2 – Wlan, Bluetooth
The biggest differences are under the hood. The first Aria only supported a few Wlan channels, causing problems with some routers. The Aria 2 is now equipped with a modern radio module that should work with all routers.
A new feature is the Bluetooth radio, which helps especially with the initial setup of the scale. To do this, the scale is paired in the Fitbit app and then connected to the home WLAN; this is much easier than with the old model.
Differences Aria and Aria 2 – Measuring and Weighing
Fitbit states that the new model weighs more accurately than the old one, but does not specify this further. The measurement of the body fat percentage works as before: a weak current is passed through the soles of the feet and over the pelvis; the fat percentage can be calculated from the measured resistance (the method is called bioelectrical impedance analysis). For this to work, however, get on the scales without socks and with dry feet. The scale itself should stand on tiles, not on a bath mat or the like.
Tip: If the measurement of body fat with the aria does not work, the body may be statically charged, for example by walking over the carpet. Then it may help to touch a radiator or tap before weighing so that static electricity can be dissipated.
The Body Mass Index (BMI) is calculated after weighing and displayed in the Fitbit app, but it must store the correct body size in the app.
Tip: The technique used by the Aria/Aria 2 cannot measure the abdominal fat or upper body fat; the fat percentage for the whole body is therefore extrapolated from the measurement for the legs and the determined weight. For the much more accurate whole body analysis, we need a scale with handles, for example this model from Omron.
Differences Aria and Aria 2 – Display
A further improvement can be found in the display, which shines a little brighter and has a much finer resolution.
Differences Aria and Aria 2 – Recommendation
The update is not worthwhile for people whose Aria works without problems. If you are new to Aria or have problems with Wlan, always buy the new model.
Fitbit presented two new products shortly before IFA 2019. Besides the Smartwatch Fitbit Versa 2, which has long been speculated on, the Aria Air is also a smart scale. It may not bring any world-shaking innovations in terms of features, but its price is even more impressive.
The Fitbit Aria Air, which will be available worldwide in mid-October, costs nearly half of the previous version Fitbit Aria 2 from the same product family.
The Aria Air is a Bluetooth scale
The big difference: While the Fitbit Aria 2 is a WLAN scale that connects to the smartphone via Wi-Fi or Bluetooth, the lower-cost Aria Air only synchronizes with the Fitbit app via Bluetooth. In this way, it transmits the measured weight and can calculate a BMI. However, it obviously cannot break down the weight according to body fat, water content, muscle and bone mass like the Aria 2.
In the app you can follow the development of your weight. The Air is supposed to score especially in the interaction with the data on heart rate, activity, sleep quality and nutrition, which the user measures with other Fitbit wearables.
Set weight goals with the support of the community
You can set weight goals within the app and record what you eat every day. This gives you an overview of weight loss and weight gain trends based on your diet. Users get support in the community area of the Fitbit app, where they can exchange information with other Fitbit users about nutrition, weight and composition.
According to Fitbit, the data on weight is not only compatible with the company’s own app, but can also be synchronized with applications from other popular app manufacturers to have all the data in front of you at a glance. Aria Air is also compatible with Fitbit Premium, the wearable manufacturer’s new subscription service.