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The Versa Three is Fitbit’s greatest health smartwatch, bested in its options solely by the much more premium, health-focussed Fitbit Sense.
By way of health options the Versa Three and Sense are equals, however the Sense provides a bunch of latest health-related options together with EDA stress administration and ECG coronary heart measurement. You’ll be taught extra in each our Fitbit Sense evaluate and Fitbit Sense vs Fitbit Versa Three comparability.
The Versa Three boasts loads of well being options, too: in some ways it mirrors the Sense; it simply doesn’t go into the rarified medical complexity you get with the upper-end smartwatch.
In some methods, it is a less-is-more benefit. The Versa Three is much less overwhelmed with medical options and focuses firmly on health, at two thirds of the value.
Design and construct
The squircle (squared circle) Versa Three boasts a vivid AMOLED display screen that’s much like the earlier Versa screens, however bigger – 1.58in with a 336×336 decision – and extra curved, so it appears to be like just a little softer.
By comparability, the Versa 2’s display screen measured 1.39in, with a 300×300 decision. The bigger display screen means the Versa Three is bigger general too, however solely fractionally so.
You may choose to maintain the show in a basic-face At all times On mode, which is most popular while you want fast entry to your stats throughout exercises, runs, and bike rides as an illustration – however this can lower the Versa 3’s battery life.
It’s unimaginable to not evaluate the Versa Three with the Fitbit Sense as a result of the 2 are so comparable in design. The Versa Three lacks the Sense’s stainless-steel ring that’s used for the EDA stress and ECG coronary heart measurements. In any other case, they’re just about an identical wanting aside from color choices.
The Versa Three is available in two case colors (Black Aluminium and Mushy Gold Aluminium), with three color decisions of the brand new Infinity Band (Black, Midnight Blue, and Pink Clay). My Versa Three check pattern was the Mushy Gold case with Midnight Blue band, and it appears to be like nice.
Because the design is similar because the Sense, you may also purchase from the identical wide selection of accent straps: 5 Sport, six Woven, three Knit and 4 Leather-based bands, plus 4 decisions of Infinity Band.
I’m not a giant fan of the brand new Infinity Band that replaces the safer tang-buckle strap discovered on the Versa and Versa 2. The Infinity Band’s peg-in-hole connection simply doesn’t really feel as sturdy because the buckle.
The bands are swappable, and fortunately this course of is 100 instances simpler than the Versa and Versa 2’s fiddly metal-bar association. Now, you simply push down on a raised tab and click on the bands out and in.
Additionally just like the Sense, the Versa Three encompasses a vibrating solid-state haptic button somewhat than the bodily button on the earlier Versa fashions. It’s solely actually for powering on, as you navigate by swiping left or proper or up and down. You may also set customisable shortcuts through button presses. These can go straight to apps such because the Alexa voice assistant, Music, Alarms and so forth.
The watch itself and the silicone Infinity Band are waterproof as much as 50m, though a few of the accent wrist straps are much less so.
What does the Fitbit Versa Three do?
The Versa Three affords the fundamental all-day exercise measurements: steps, distance, flooring climbed, hourly exercise, energetic minutes, and energy burned.
And it goes loads additional, motivating you to look past 10,000 steps as your objective, and push your self more durable with targets for Lively Zone Minutes, the place you earn factors for transferring into the recorded heart-rates zones: Fats Burn, Cardio and Peak.
All that is excellently displayed on the massive, vivid display screen, and in additional depth within the Fitbit cellular app.
The Versa 3, just like the Sense, makes use of Fitbit’s up to date PurePulse 2.zero expertise in its now multi-path optical heart-rate sensor, which the corporate claims affords extra correct readings through machine studying algorithms that map a number of coronary heart charge alerts to construct a greater image of your coronary heart charge.
The HR monitoring is the core of lots of Fitbit’s health options, together with Cardio Health Ranges, Lively Zone Minutes, Exercise Depth Map, Guided Respiratory Classes, and Sleep Rating.
Its hero new addition is the built-in GPS, which was missing from earlier Versa fashions. Extra sporty health customers will relish this as they not want to hold their cellphone spherical with them for GPS tempo and distance stats and maps of their exercise routes.
Swipe left to the Train app to select from as much as 20 train modes for real-time stats throughout exercises: Run, Bike, Swim, Weights, Stroll, Exercise, Interval Exercise, Spinning, Treadmill, Golf, Hike, Tennis, Stair Climber, Pilates, Circuit Coaching, Bootcamp, Yoga, Elliptical, Martial Arts, and Kickboxing.
Fitbit’s SmartTrack characteristic will, after 15 minutes’ exercise, robotically recognise and report most workouts if you happen to don’t set them through the watch.
Fitbit is the world beater on the subject of sleep monitoring, and also you get detailed stats on not simply the size of your sleep, however its high quality (scored out of 100) and the way lengthy you might be in every of the measured sleep phases: mild, REM, and deep.
Whereas it lacks the Sense’s stress-management rating and instruments and ECG app, Fitbit has hinted that the pores and skin temperature characteristic might be added to the Versa at an unspecified date.
It additionally has an SpO2 monitor that measures blood oxygen ranges that may point out well being points equivalent to allergy symptoms, bronchial asthma, or sleep apnea. This might be an indicator solely, so if the Versa Three information suggests low blood-oxygen ranges you must seek the advice of a health care provider and bear extra in-depth polysomnographic investigation.
Fitbit’s SpO2 monitoring isn’t as refined as Apple’s on-demand SpO2 readings on the Apple Watch or on the Withings ScanWatch. Fitbit takes its readings in a single day solely, and takes some time to indicate the rating within the morning.
Fitbit additionally requires non-Premium uers to alter the Versa 3’s clock face to the SpO2 setting that’s required to take a studying – one thing I discovered too straightforward to neglect, particularly at bedtime! Fitbit ought to make this computerized perform out there to non-Premium customers, too.
The Versa Three does lack the Sense’s extra helpful excessive and low coronary heart charge notifications, though not from any technical limitation so far as I could make out. But it surely does check your resting coronary heart charge, and affords guided respiration periods for meditative mindfulness. It could possibly additionally observe ladies’s menstrual well being.
The Sense goes a lot additional, however that degree of medical metrics won’t be what you require from what’s principally a health system. Some may discover the Sense well being characteristic set to be greater than they care to make use of, and a whole lot of it additionally depends on subscribing to Fitbit’s £79/$79 annual Premium service.
As soon as you have checked a couple of instances that you do not have an irregular coronary heart beat or sleep apnea, do you actually need the perform once more?
Sensible options and software program
Whereas it lacks the hundreds of apps you’d have entry to with an Apple or Put on OS smartwatch, the Fitbit Versa Three is firstly a health tracker and excels on this degree.
You do get the fundamental options that the majority smartwatches provide, together with in all probability probably the most helpful, notifications: Caller ID, texts, and the favored messaging apps.
Apple retains the most effective for its personal Apple Watch, so solely Android customers get the Fast Replies and Voice Replies features, in addition to the power to answer textual content messages with voice-to-text instructions.
That mentioned, the brand new built-in speaker (plus microphone, after all) allows you to take calls out of your wrist through Bluetooth connection to your cellphone, in addition to ship incoming calls to voicemail and management quantity, all from the watch.
The built-in voice assistants now permit audible replies. Just like the Versa 2 earlier than it, the Versa Three options Amazon’s Alexa, and fin the US solely in the mean time, Google’s voice-activated Assistant. Google’s voice assistant will hit extra English-speaking nations – together with the UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand – from “winter 2020”.
Just like the Versa 2 earlier than it and the Sense above it, the Versa Three options 2.5GB of cupboard space, though with the numerous limitation that this works solely with Pandora and Deezer for music. Fitbit’s music-storage capabilities truly seem to have gone backwards with the Versa Three and Sense.
It does, nevertheless, allow you to management Spotify Premium music playlists through a close-by paired cellphone – and a few primary controls when utilizing Apple Music and Audible.
That is nowhere close to as accessible as on the Apple Watch. For those who’re related to Wi-Fi or cellular information, you may stream Apple Music, podcasts and audiobooks, even when away out of your iPhone.
Battery life and charging
You get 6+ days battery life with the Fitbit Versa 3, similar to you do with the Sense.
Battery life, after all, depends in your utilization. Utilise the built-in GPS, and the battery will fade a lot sooner. Swap on the always-on show characteristic, and battery life will halve regardless of the display screen turning to lower-power options.
However six days remains to be a formidable battery efficiency, particularly while you be aware that even the most recent Apple Watch 6 has an 18-hour battery life – making issues like sleep monitoring a league under the extent of Fitbit’s.
The Versa Three additionally options Fitbit’s new quick charging perform that will get you 24 hours of battery life from simply 12 minutes of charging – perfect if you happen to get up to a light health tracker.
And the charger itself is magnetic and loads smaller than the previous chunky Versa/Versa 2 charging clasp.
Pricing and availability
The Fitbit Versa Three prices £199.99 within the UK, $229 within the US, €229.95 within the EU, $299.95 in Canada, and $399.95 in Australia – the identical value because the Versa 2 on its launch a 12 months earlier. You may order it direct from Fitbit, Amazon, or most different electronics retailers.
It’s the identical value because the Apple Watch Sequence 3. We want the Fitbit for all-round health monitoring however Apple is getting nearer and beating in different areas, though with a lamentable battery life that makes sleep monitoring irritating.
You may nonetheless purchase the older mannequin Versa 2 at a reduction if you happen to’re completely happy to stay with out the brand new built-in GPS, claimed extra correct heart-rate sensor, speaker, and forthcoming Google voice assistant; for extra particulars, learn our Fitbit Versa 2 vs Versa Three comparability.
Notably, the Versa Three is a 3rd cheaper than the top-end Sense. That £100/$100 value distinction is loads, and most of what you lose, we suspect you will not miss after your first few experiments with the Sense’s further micro-health options.
Try the greatest health trackers we have reviewed for extra choices.
With the addition of a built-in GPS, sporty health fanatics will benefit from the Versa Three as a significant improve to the earlier Versa and Versa 2.
For those who can stay with operating or biking utilizing your cellphone’s related GPS, there isn’t an enormous crucial to improve from the Versa 2. However as a brand new watch, it is a compelling possibility.
The place we predict the Versa Three actually wins is being a 3rd cheaper than the top-end Fitbit Sense, and so affords nice worth in case your essential priorities are health and core sensible options somewhat than a ton of probably overwhelming well being stats.