How I Lost And Found My Fitbit One

I’m always losing my Fitbit one activity tracker.  It normally lives clipped onto my belt, but it gets caught on stuff and yanked off every few months.  Usually I have a good idea of when this might have happened and track it down manually, but yesterday it was really lost.  I had no idea where it could be, so I needed to turn to technology.  This is how I found it.

The first step was to open up the Fitbit app on my iPhone, from the dashboard I tapped on the picture of my One

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to open the following screen.

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From here I could see when my Fitbit last managed to sync with my phone, which told me that I’d lost it somewhere at home.  Next I opened up this screen

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I walked around the house and garden tapping the ‘sync now’ button, until it succeeded.  This meant I was pretty close.  Unfortunately this wasn’t enough of a clue, because it only told me that the Fitbit was somewhere in my garden and the garden was too big to search end to end.  I spent half an hour wandering around trying to find it in all the places I could think of, but failed miserably, I enrolled one of my daughters in the search, no luck.  I went in the bath ‘for inspiration’ (not really) but I did have inspiration, maybe I could track the Bluetooth signal strength?

I downloaded the app LightBlue from the Apple App Store, got out of the bath, and started to wander around the garden in my dressing gown.  This is what I saw:

 

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At first I clicked the entry for my One (there was also an entry for my Apple TV) and saw this screen:

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and got myself confused, it was the previous screen that I needed, and I also needed my glasses, because it was the tiny graph and number below it that I needed to look at

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The basic idea was then to work in a grid pattern, walking around the garden trying to find the place where the number, –80, in the picture above, was as low as possible.  In my case –95 was about 10 meters away, –75 was a couple of meters away and –50 was half a meter away or even closer.

By now it was dark and I was using the LED light on my phone to illuminate the flower bed and the indicator finally showed –45 and there it was, nestling just below a bush, where it had fallen while I was carrying my garden chair into the last sunny spot in the garden, a few hours earlier.

UPDATE:

a friends pointed out in the comments that you can also set the ‘silent alarm’ for a few minutes in the future, sync with your fitbit as described above, and then listen for the vibration noise.  I did try this, about 10 times, but it didn’t work for me, but it might for you.

I’m tapping out this post in Caffe Nero, thankful that I will have my beloved Fitbit One with me later when I go hiking, feeling nice and smug. Perseverance, yet again, has paid off.

Steve Richards

I'm retired from work as a business and IT strategist. now I'm travelling, hiking, cycling, swimming, reading, gardening, learning, writing this blog and generally enjoying good times with friends and family

2 Responses

  1. Stéphane Quevillon says:

    When I lost mine, After I was close enough to synch, I set the alarm for the next minute, stood very still to hear the vibration. I had to repeat few times to home in on it but eventually found it.

  2. I did try this too, but sadly it didn’t work for me. I updated the post with your tip though

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