Tech

Fitbit Versa 3 review: Everything you need in a smartwatch, plus a few surprises

Like

  • Up to 6 days’ battery life
  • Bright, always-on AMOLED screen
  • Advanced sleep tracking
  • Onboard GPS
  • Mic and speaker for text dictation

Don’t Like

  • Relies greatly on mobile app
  • Slow to sync
  • Health metrics are difficult to discover
  • Notification replies are Android- just

The Fitbit Versa 3 is Fitbit’s finest smartwatch for many people. With an always-on screen, constructed-in GPS, blood oxygen and temperature level tracking throughout sleep, and a battery that lasts 6 days, the Versa 3 holds its own versus a few of its costlier rivals like the Apple Watch SE and even theFitbit Sense While you do not get the tension tracker and FDA-cleared electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG) like the Sense, the remainder of the Versa 3’s smartwatch and fitness functions are comparable. As an included bonus offer, the Versa 3 costs $100 less than the Sense.

Better style well-rounded

The Versa 3 still has the very same square-ish watch body and metal frame as its predecessor the Versa 2, however it now has a bigger 1.58-inch AMOLED screen with slimmer bezels. It’s brilliant, crisp and simple to see in direct sunshine. It can remain always-on (as a toned-down variation with less metrics showed) to offer you a fast glimpse at the time without moving your wrist. And considering that Fitbit supports third-party watch deals with, you have numerous various choices to select from.

Despite its visual enhancements, the touchscreen and Fitbit user interface still aren’t as responsive as what you ‘d get on an Apple Watch or Galaxy Watch, which likewise have actually AMOLED screens. The Versa 3 lags a bit in between swipes and takes a while to fill apps and show info.

Instead of a physical button on the side of the watch like its predecessors, the Versa 3 now has an indented haptic side button. In theory, this works precisely like a genuine button, however the haptic feedback is no place near as pleasing as pushing a genuine button and it takes some getting utilized to.

Fortunately, not all the style modifications have a discovering curve. Fitbit has actually likewise upgraded the strap system on the Versa 3 and now all you need to do to switch out bands is press a button. It’s a lot simpler than previous designs, which had a small, fiddly clasp.

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Fitbit

Better training tools for physical fitness tracking

At this point it’s safe to presume most Fitbit gadgets can manage your fundamental fitness-tracking requirements, determining actions, range, calories burned and heart rate. The Versa 3 covers the essentials well and has the very same physical fitness functions as the more priceySense It tracks 20 various activities consisting of indoor and outside swimming and has automated exercise detection for some workout types like running if you forget to begin a session.

It’s likewise the very first Versa smartwatch to have actually constructed-in GPS, although not the very first Fitbit, as the Charge 4 and Sense likewise have actually constructed-in GPS. As a runner, not having GPS on earlier Versa designs was a huge discomfort point for me as I would need to take my phone to get a map of my run (or bike trip). With the Versa 3, I can leave my phone behind and still get the range and path info of my outside exercises. The one drawback is that the watch can take a few minutes to lock on to a GPS signal. You’re expected to stall while it does this, however I would forget and remove instantly after pushing start, then it would take about 4 minutes prior to getting the verification.

The Versa 3 can likewise offer you heart rate zone notices throughout exercises. These utilize your heart rate to identify your effort level, so the watch buzzes to alert you as you go into various zones such as fat burn, cardio or peak for instance. This can assist you have a sense of when to press yourself a bit harder, or alleviate up a bit throughout training. Instead of utilizing actions taken as the sole step of success throughout your day, the Versa 3 has a metric called Active Zone Minutes which utilizes heart rate information to identify for how long you have actually engaged in some sort of exercise, even the ones that do not need walking much. So instead of going for 10,000 actions, you can go for something like 20 or more Active Zone Minutes, depending upon your objectives. According to Fitbit, Active Zone Minutes are a more precise representation of your physical fitness level than actions alone.

I like that the Versa 3, along with other Fitbit gadgets, sets weekly activity objectives instead of evaluating you on a everyday basis. As a moms and dad of 2 little kids, working from house and attempting to capture in exercises throughout a pandemic is difficult. I certainly have my off days, so weekly objectives were far more sensible and motivating. I’d take a look at my everyday statistics on the watch as a work in development instead of as a total failure. The Versa 3 alerts you (and commemorates with an on-screen animation) when you reach your objective prior to completion of the week. You’ll continue to build up points up until completion of the week and can see a in-depth breakdown of your activity in the Fitbit mobile app.

You can even learn how in shape you are if you want to dig deep enough into the settings. The Versa 3 utilizes your heart rate to approximate your Vo2 max (optimum oxygen usage throughout workout) and plots it on a chart to inform you how you compare to your group. On the Fitbit mobile app it’s called Cardio Fitness levels and you can discover it by pushing the heart rate tile on the Today summary and swiping left on the chart.

Fitbit Premium subscribers likewise have actually access to assisted exercise programs and videos. A premium membership costs $10 a month, however you get 3 months totally free with theVersa 3 You follow along on your phone with classes from brand names such as Popsugar and Daily Burn, or you can download a whole exercise to your watch utilizing the Fitbit Coach app. Downloading a exercise was more useful for me, as I might normally squeeze in a 10-minute ab exercise right after a run without needing to take a look at my phone for directions.

Read more: Best smartwatches of 2021

Plenty of health information if you desire it

But the Versa 3 is far more than a physical fitness tracker. It likewise keeps track of other elements about your health, consisting of SpO2 (blood oxygen levels), breathing rate and variations in skin temperature level while you sleep, which can jointly assist paint a wider photo of your general health.

It’s essential to keep in mind, nevertheless, that this is not a medical gadget, and must not be utilized for diagnostic functions. Always speak with a doctor or other competent health company about any health-related concerns you might have about a medical condition or health goals. Only the ECG on the Fitbit Sense has actually gotten FDA clearance.

Fitbit shines when it concerns sleep tracking and the Versa 3 supplies among the most thorough take a look at your sleep compared to any other smartwatch. Whether that’s really useful to you is another thing.

It takes into consideration period along with the various phases of sleep (deep, light and Rapid Eye Movement), which is basic when it concerns sleep tracking. But then it likewise breaks out your breathing rate, heart rate, blood oxygen levels and variations in skin temperature level while you sleep, and you can examine all these statistics in the Fitbit app in the early morning.

Fitbit likewise uses innovative sleep analytics for Premium customers which put a few of this info into context by informing you how you compare to the typical individual, which was useful for an amateur sleep tracker like myself. It likewise provides you ideas on how to enhance your sleep. For me, that consists of getting to bed previously, which I was currently aware of. Sadly it can’t require me into bed at 10 p.m.– yet.

But among the most significant discomfort points for me was that you can’t get this info at a glimpse on your watch face when you awaken. There’s a summary of your sleep and your SpO2 variety (as long as you usage a particular watch face), however you’ll need to change to the Fitbit app for more insights. To me, that type of beats the function of having a smartwatch. I’d frequently go days or often even weeks without examining the app. When I did go in and check, however, I was happily amazed by a few of the information I discovered. For skin temperature level irregularity for instance, I observed the dips in the chart accompanied a few of the modifications in my menstruation (note that the Fitbit Sense likewise keeps track of skin temperature level too) and I can see how you might begin to make connections in between a few of these information points gradually. Temperature tracking is not something you’ll most likely utilize on a everyday basis, however it’s great to have a lot information about yourself to review if you ever need it.

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The Versa 3 gets smarter, however still can’t capture the Apple Watch or Galaxy Watch

Fitbit’s previous smartwatches dragged rivals such as the more pricey Apple Watch and Galaxy Watch as they did not have a broad choice of third-party apps and LTE connection. The Versa 3 has the very same disadvantages and relies greatly on the phone, however it’s at least beginning to reach the pack, particularly when coupled with an Android phone.

The Versa 3 now has a constructed-in microphone and speaker so you can take fast get in touch with your wrist if you have an Android phone oriPhone You can likewise combine the Versa 3 with Bluetooth earbuds. Incoming call notices will be shown on the watch despite which phone you have, however just Android users will have the ability to react to messages from their wrist with fast replies, or by determining a action.

You can likewise bark orders at your wrist with 2 options of voice assistant on the Versa 3: Amazon’s Alexa orGoogle Assistant And while I have not had a possibility to completely compare them yet (Google Assistant released while I was currently well into my evaluation) in the meantime Alexa is the just one that can read your actions aloud instead of simply showing them on the screen.

You can likewise make contactless payments with the Versa 3 with Fitbit Pay and listen to music from Pandora orDeezer There is no onboard music storage for tunes you own, like MP3 files. Instead, you’ll need a Pandora or Deezer membership to conserve and keep tunes for offline listening. While the Versa 3 does have a Spotify app, you can just utilize it as a remote to manage playback on your phone.

Battery life is 2nd to none

The Versa 3 might not be the most intelligent watch, however it ruins the competitors on battery life. Even shooting on all cylinders with the always-on screen active, a couple GPS exercises and sleep tracking, I was still able to get practically 3 days of battery out of the watch. You can extend this approximately 6 days with more moderate usage and by disabling the always-on screen. The Versa 3 likewise charges faster than previous Versa watches: Fitbit states 12 minutes on the battery charger will get you a complete 24 hr of battery, and thirty minutes on the battery charger gets you to 100%. But if you’re upgrading from a previous design, note that the Versa 3 utilizes a brand-new, exclusive battery charger so it’s not suitable with your previous one. It’s magnetic and need to be placed at simply the ideal angle to charge, which takes some getting utilized to.

A middle ground of health functions and physical fitness tracking

The Versa 3 has adequate health metrics for individuals seeking to discover more about their bodies without needing to invest additional on theFitbit Sense It uses useful physical fitness tools for training and can lastly be considered a feasible alternative for outside running and biking thanks to its constructed-in GPS. And it does sleep tracking much better than any smartwatch I’ve checked up until now.

While the Versa 3 is a strong smartwatch alternative for Android owners, the Charge 4 might be a much better bet for iPhone users desiring a a Fitbit gadget. For about $100 less, you get a great deal of the very same fantastic health and wellness functions. You lose the a few of the included clever functions like voice to text replies, however much of them aren’t iPhone-compatible anyhow.

Read more: Fitbit Sense, Versa 3 and Inspire 2 are here: How to decide which to buy

Fitbit Sense vs Fitbit Versa 3

Fitbit Sense Fitbit Versa 3
Shape Square Square
Materials Aluminum and stainless-steel.
Display size, resolution. AMOLED. AMOLED.
Always On Yes Yes
Interchangeable bands. Yes Yes
GPS. Yes Yes
Automatic exercise detection. Yes Yes
Water resistance. Yes, approximately 50m. Yes, approximately 50m.
Notifications Text responds (Android). Text responds (Android).
Microphone Yes Yes
Speaker Yes Yes
Voice assistant. Alexa and Google Assistant Alexa and Google Assistant
Music Onboard (Deezer, Pandora), playback control (Spotify). Onboard (Deezer, Pandora), playback control (Spotify).
Mobile Payments Fitbit Pay Fitbit Pay
Sleep tracking. Yes Yes
Period tracking. Yes Yes
Special functions. Stress tracking and SpO2, ECG and skin temperature level. SpO2 and skin temperature level.
Compatibility Android and iOS. Android and iOS.
Battery life. 6 days. 6 days.
Price (USD). $ 329. $ 229.
Price (GBP). ₤ 300. ₤ 200.
Price (AUD). $ 500. $ 400.

First releasedDec 1

The info consisted of in this post is for academic and educational functions just and is not planned as health or medical recommendations. Always seek advice from a doctor or other competent health company concerning any concerns you might have about a medical condition or health goals.

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