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Fitbit Versa, a new attempt by Fitbit to attract the attention of the connected sports user


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Fitbit introduced a new watch today in New York, the Fitbit Versa. This is their third smart watch and follows in the footsteps of the Fitbit Ionic; their first model after the purchase of Pebble, where the Americans have placed all their hopes.

The Fitbit Versa is a new attempt to compete against the Apple Watch, the umpteenth. They have not tried to launch an "Apple Watch Killer" (they already tried that with the Ionic), but simply try to fight by playing the card of a tighter price. In fact the design of the Versa is slightly reminiscent of the Apple Watch in its shapes, much more rounded than the Ionic, but also reminiscent of the iconic Pebble.

Fitbit Versa

This new model was already filtered a few days ago through Wareable (probably an interested filtration, because it was about final renders), but we only saw images without knowing any other technical details. Today we finally have them.

The first thing to note is the absence of GPS built into the watch itself, although it can make use of the GPS in the mobile phone we carry. This is what Fitbit calls connected GPS. But as I say, we must carry the phone if we want complete data from our training.

It does inherit the same operating system as the Ionic, increasingly worked on and now at last with full support for applications and clock faces, but is still a long way from the experience offered by the Apple model or other rivals with Android Wear. Although it will arrive in April with the latest operating system update, Fitbit OS 2, including message response functions and o

It offers the same software possibilities as its big brother, such as the possibility of storing and playing music, swimming in the pool, optical pulse sensor and even support for wireless payments through NFC thanks to Fitbit Pay -already operational in Spain, at the moment through Carrefour cards-.

Fitbit Versa Fitbit Versa

However, for this last feature you have to choose the Special Edition with an extra cost of 30 ? (199.95 ? for the normal version, 229.95 ? for the special edition). This version also includes straps in textile material (all watches include straps in size S and L) in addition to the same silicone straps with which the normal model is sold. The watch case is made of aluminium in any case.

Fitbit's new intelligent watch is once again outstanding in two respects: a very good quality colour display and a range of up to 4 days without needing to be charged.


My opinion

Fitbit Ionic has been a very strong bet on the part of the manufacturer, a bet that has not been reciprocated by the public at the sales level. The problem is that it has wanted to pit you against the Apple Watch, a device that in many cases is not sold because of its specifications but simply because it is an Apple Watch. Cupertino's were very clever in keeping the Series 1 on sale in order to offer a cheaper step up to their range, thus liquidating any possibility of entry for other manufacturers and turning the smart watch sector into a virtual monopoly.

Versa comes in at a point below Apple's price point and with much broader compatibility (in addition to iOS it can link to millions of Android phones), but it seems that only Apple has been able to position itself in the consumer electronics segment with a really good user experience that, so far, no other manufacturer has been able to replicate.

I don't think it has much chance of displacing the Apple Watch, especially considering that Fitbit's OS is still somewhat green although it offers many interesting possibilities, and Apple has already reached maturity in its ecosystem with many applications, which in the end is what gives value to the smart watch.

Eduardo Mateos

I've been surrounded by electronic devices of all kinds for more than 25 years. Using them, testing them, taking them apart and dissecting them. Long distance triathlete: I swim, run and cycle for a long time. Maybe too much.

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  1. Good afternoon, I would like to ask you if you are going to perform an analysis, as you did with the Ionic device, of the Fitbit Versa.
    I would like to do that, because I am thinking about renewing my activity monitor, since I am currently using Fitbit Charge Hr, which I chose thanks to the analysis you made earlier. Today, I have reviewed all the analyses of the devices that have caught my attention, but I can't make up my mind. That's why, in addition to asking you about the above, I would like you to recommend some of them to me. What I am looking for in my device is mainly a correct calculation of my daily caloric expenditure, and what this entails, in this aspect Fitbit Charge Hr, I think it has fulfilled my expectations. That's why I had taken Fitbit Versa into account, but, due to the lack of information, I haven't made up my mind. I'm waiting for your answer and thank you in advance. In addition to congratulating you for the great work you do in your analyses.

    1. Well, at the moment it's not very high on my priority list, mainly because it's a Fitbit Ionic offered at a lower price. Of course it doesn't have GPS and the basic model doesn't have Fitbit Pay, but apart from these two details everything else is identical (optical sensor, performance, etc.).

      If you're happy with Fitbit's platform, the Versa is a fantastic option because you're still on the same platform but with a much more capable clock.

  2. Thank you very much for your answer.
    One last question, between the Fitbit Blaze device and Fitbit Versa, what differences do I find?
    On the other hand, my brother, is going to acquire a device and I would like you to tell me which one you would recommend him, among those he has looked at. The devices in question are: Garmin Forerunner 235, Garmin Vivoactice Hr and Fitbit Versa.
    Thank you very much in advance.

    1. At a basic level it is the same, but the Blaze has no operating system and even less functions.

  3. Hi. Is it worth changing my Vivoactive hr , for the fitbit versa? I'm happy with the Vivoactive hr but lately the timing is going pretty bad...and I'm starting to get tired.

    Thank you

    1. It depends on the use. As an activity clock it's much more modern and in my opinion the Fitbit platform is better for that use. But it doesn't have GPS, so if it's something you use frequently you should keep in mind that if you want accurate data you should carry the phone with you at all times.

  4. What about the accuracy of the pulse measurement (in my case when I ride a mountain bike) do you think is better or worse than the M430, M600 or vivoactive hr polar?

    1. To cycle with any of them you'll need an external sensor. We'll have to see what the sensor on the new Polar Vantage is like, but at the moment the sensors built into the watches are not valid for cycling.

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