The Apple Watch is a beautiful piece of kit with ground-breaking functionality and UI, but lost in all the shouting is a simple question: how is it as a fitness tracker, which is the core function of most smart watches? The answer is: pretty good, if you take some care.
CNET took that care and documented it. Out of the box, reporter Dan Graziano found, step counter overestimated the number of steps taken by about 10 percent, which is about the same as a Fitbit Charge and significantly less accurate than the Garmin Vivosmart, which was less than 1 percent off. But when you take the time to calibrate your Watch — the steps for which he documents — accuracy improves to a 0.3 percent variance, far more accurate than any other smart watch or activity tracker.
Calibration requires a 20-minute walk outside. If you can’t manage that. maybe you need an activity tracker more than you think, and exactitude in step counting isn’t your biggest fitness problem.