Reaching the digital device breaking point

Garmin left, Fitbit right.

“Log Food, Log Weight, Log Sleep, Log Water.”


When I accidentally brought up this menu in my Fitbit Dashboard on the iPhone 6, it jogged loose a question that’s been bugging me for a while.

Am I a slave to digital devices? Am I going over the digital cliff? It would appear so.

In the past couple of months, I’ve bought a Fitbit Charge HR, a Garmin Edge 520 bike computer and a MacBook Pro. They all require learning and worse, charging. I am tripping over the different charging units and cords. Worse still, I tend to forget the charging units when I travel or lose them.

All the units except perhaps the Macbook Pro have myriad shortcomings. I give the MacBook a pass because I’ve been using a laptop computer for north of 25 years. It’s the best of the worst.

The FitBit HR (Heart Rate) leaves much to be desired not to mention this wrist strangling wonder is wholly unnecessary. The display is microscopic and unreadable in half light. Bright sunlight? Forget it. You have to click a button to get the time. Hold it down a nanosecond  too long and it skips to your steps.

I DON’T CARE. I groan when a golf buddy takes out his iPhone to gauge every shot.

The Fitbit HR has to be rejuvenated every five days or less with a proprietary cord soon to be added to my useless charging unit collection. And I’ve got some nice watches I don’t wear anymore so my Fitbit doesn’t miss a step.

The way around this is to carry the Fitbit HR in my pocket to free up my wrist for a lovely Victorinox watch which does nothing but tell time. But it does it very well!

The Garmin Edge 520 has a zillion features, but is redundant. This was a ridiculous and indulgent purchase, but I got 25% off! I already get speed, distance, feet climbed and various other metrics with the free version on Strava on my iPhone 6.

Of course I must have have reports of VO2 recovery time, compatibility with ANT+ indoor trainers and Functional Threshold Power when used with Vector and Vector 2 powers meters. If only knew what any of this is! If one uses these advanced features, how would they find time to eat, sleep and work?

Oh, and the 520’s bluetooth with the iPhone 6 doesn’t work. I wanted that. A patch is coming, promises customer support.

Do I need these devices? Of course not. Will I keep using them? Of course. Is there a helpline I can call to wean myself off this digital addiction? Please let me know.

Follow @thedodgeretort on Twitter.


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