Fitbit Versa 2 Review – Tried and Tested

Fitbit has announced a new fitness smartwatch Fitbit Versa 2 with a comfortable polyester band. In addition, with the release of the Fitbit Versa 2, the company has made plain that they are shifting their focus away from "episodic gadget sales" toward a premium subscription business model.

Even though the Versa 2 is strapped to my wrist mostly for its fitness features, I've been playing around with the additional features. The always-on display, improved Spotify integration, skin temperature tracking, and the new built-in Amazon Alexa features are all part of this upgrade.

With an always-on display, Fitbit has gone back to its origins. These are fitness watches that you can really see the display on every time.

Fitbit Versa 2 Display and Design

It seems that Fibit's design philosophy is based on the maxim "if it ain't busted, we don't improve it." Customers appear to have taken to the "squircle" look of both Apple's Watch and Fitbit's initial Versa. Fitbit has followed suit with the Versa 2. Even while the Versa 2 seems identical to the original, a closer look shows subtle design changes that elevate it to a whole new level of cool.

Although it's somewhat thicker than the Apple Watch 3 at 0.47 inches (12 mm), it really looks to be thinner due to its curved design. With a dimension bigger than Versa Lite, the 40mm screen size should be comfortable for the majority of people's wrists.

With the Versa 2's reduced bezels thanks to Fitbit removing its logo from the bottom, you'll have more screen real estate than before. Bezels are normally hidden by the display's black backdrop, but they may still be seen from certain angles, even if they are simple to ignore.

Our Independent Rating

A single button on the left of the Versa 2 functions as both a "select" and a "back" button, unlike the first Versa, which featured two buttons on each side of the device. It's as simple as pressing a button to get to the function you want, and all other navigation is handled by the touchscreen.

Radio transceiver, bluetooth 4.0, and hidden wi-fi antenna are still these to provide the best connectivity. The Versa 2 has a cleaner design thanks to its single button and wireless technology.

The screen is the only significant hardware upgrade worth mentioning. Its dazzling AMOLED touchscreen, shielded by Gorilla Glass 3, has replaced the LCD display of Fitbit Versa 1, which was made in the 1980s.

In general, we found the brightness level on our Versa 2 to be much too bright, so we permanently set it to the lowest brightness option. The 300 x 300 resolution screen is sharp even on the "dim" setting, ambient temperature, and the ambient light sensor allows it to automatically alter brightness based on where you are.

There aren't many choices for customizing the always-on display mode.

Fitbit Versa 2 Health and Fitness Smartwatch with Heart Rate, Music, Alexa Built-In, Sleep and Swim Tracking, Black/Carbon, One Size (S and L Bands Included)
Fitbit Versa 2 Health and Fitness Smartwatch with Heart Rate, Music, Alexa Built-In, Sleep and Swim Tracking, Black/Carbon, One Size (S and L Bands Included)

The Versa 2 now includes an always-on mode, which is a welcome addition from Fitbit. This feature is disabled by default, so you'll have to go into the watch's settings to enable it. As a result, the always-on watch face was restricted to a single analog or digital choice prior to the release of this model. With the latest firmware update, third-party always-on faces are now available, including several that can be modified. There are a limited number of free watch faces accessible via the companion app, but the majority are in the form of premium add-ons.

You'll get half the battery life if you use the always-on display option. Frequent charging is inevitable this way. However, it's pleasant to be able to view the fitness watches content without moving your arm (especially on the direct sunlight).

Fitbit Versa 2 Performance

The Versa 2 is a faster watch than its predecessor, owing to a new CPU under the hood, making it more visually appealing. It's not that there was any latency or performance difficulties with previous versions of Versa, but upgrading to the Versa 2 will make a noticeable change in the smoothness of operation. In the “Today” window (accessible by swiping upward on the screen), navigating between pages, starting and shutting applications, and accessing fresh real-time stats is faster than before.

The Versa 2's battery life and charge time are comparable to that of previous Fitbit devices. With normal usage, Fitbit promises that you can obtain five days of excellent battery life with a single charge. At best, I’ve found this watch on for six days with the screen brightness lowered and the same charge cycle.

When you lift your wrist, the first thing you see is the watch interface, so it's comforting to know that Fitbit has hundreds of styles to pick from through the app. As of September 2019, you could only save one watch interface at a time on the Versa 2.

If you wanted anything different, you had to go back to the shop, go through the possibilities, and then pick it out. By selecting the new option, the prior one was removed from the list.

Unlike classic wristbands, a recent software update to this device allows you to store and switch between up to five watch interfaces at any given time.

With four app shortcuts provided on each page, swiping from the right to the left will bring you to the app launcher. Lightly pushing and holding until you get haptic feedback will let you rearrange the buttons to your liking. Fitbit Today data shows up to seven things of your choice, including daily total steps, steps per hour, optical heart rate monitor, sleep metrics, device temperature sensor (that detects skin temperature variation) and food and drink consumption. To get a fast glimpse at how you've done today, simply swipe up. In order to make these changes, you'll need to use the settings app on your Versa 2.

Fitbit Versa 2 Health and Fitness Smartwatch with Heart Rate, Music, Alexa Built-In, Sleep and Swim Tracking, Black/Carbon, One Size (S and L Bands Included)

You can access alerts, Quick Settings, audio controls, heart rate tracking, and Fitbit Pay by simply swiping down. Don't disturb, sleep mode, exercise modes, and an always-on display option are all accessible via the Quick Settings menu. There are just three levels of screen brightness to select from: low (the default), normal (the default), and high (the maximum).

Even while Fitbit is keen to point out that the Spotify app comes pre-installed on the Versa 2, keep in mind that it can only be used as a remote to control the Spotify app running on your phone's music player.

This means that the Versa 2 music controls are not capable of playing offline Spotify playlists, unlike Deezer and Pandora, which can do so. With 2.5GB of local storage on the device, you may save your music files on the device.

For many, the absence of a GPS fitness tracker is a deal breaker. You'll need to bring your phone with you on every run, walk, or bike ride so you know where you're going. With that in mind, Spotify offline support isn't something you'll get a chance to gripe about on the Versa 2 if you intend on carrying your phone about with you at all times.

Keeping track of your fitness is as simple as opening the watch's workout app and selecting the sort of activity you'll be doing. If you don't, Fitbit's SmartTrack technology and heart rate tracking technologies will count any action lasting more than 20 active minutes as exercise. However, sleep monitoring is carried out automatically (including its lighter sleep cycle).

The Versa 2 can not react immediately to messages sent from the compatible device like the latest iPhone. You may, but there is a major caveat: There are now just five preset short answers to pick from, but these can be changed via the Fitbit app.

Long-pressing the Versa 2's all-in-one button will bring up Alexa or Fitbit Pay, depending on your preference. Our recommendation is to utilize the Fitbit Pay button for contactless payments if your bank accepts Fitbit Pay. In our experience, Alexa may be cumbersome to use.

Alexa's Connection

The Versa 2's use of Amazon's voice assistant implies that it should be able to do many more tasks than the Fitbit Versa 1. If you want to utilize Alexa on your Fitbit, you'll first need to download the Alexa (Android or iOS phone app) and link your Amazon account to the Fitbit app before you can use voice commands. Despite this, Alexa's capabilities are still limited.

You can use Alexa to check the weather in your region, set reminders and timers, start a workout program, and even manage your smart home device setup by long-pressing the side button or swiping down on the screen (you can't use a wake phrase to summon the digital assistant). The only things you can't do is make a phone call or answer a text.

Alexa is convenient, but its capabilities are limited.

If your hands are already full, Alexa's text-based replies to questions are cumbersome to use when you're unable to use your hands for other things.

Fitbit's app must be running in the background on your phone in order to utilize Alexa voice commands on your Versa 2. The Versa 2's Alexa replies might be a little sluggish.

After a few efforts to get an answer, the screen would inform us that Alexa was "considering" and that it would take some time before she responded. Because voice instructions and quick replies must go back and forth between Amazon's servers and the devices that utilize Alexa, when she does function, it is agonizingly sluggish.

In summary, although Alexa is a wonderful addition, its utility is restricted and, at best, inconsistent.

Fitbit Versa 2 Health and Fitness Smartwatch with Heart Rate, Music, Alexa Built-In, Sleep and Swim Tracking, Black/Carbon, One Size (S and L Bands Included)

Personal Health, Medical Condition, And Sleep Monitoring

Gauge ovulation tracking for woman is available as FitBit commitment to provide excellent female health tracking.

Fitbit's tradition of jam-packing excellent fitness tracker and sleep tracker into its wearables is no exception. To begin your workout, you may use the Versa 2's fitness app, which can also automatically record your progress.

This SmartTrack technology does have some limitations, though. For starters, you must have your phone with you in order for the GPS to capture your position information.

Additionally, you will not be able to check current statistics while using this SmartTrack technology (duration of the exercise, distance covered, and so on will only appear when the device recognizes you have finished).

Only a few workout routines are capable of providing precise data about the effort during workouts, and swimming is one of them. We noticed that the Versa 2 doesn't accurately measure the distance traveled when it doesn't have its own built-in GPS. As long as you have your phone with you, the Fitbit app can accurately measure your stride length.

A sleep score is included in the Fitbit app's free edition, but you'll receive a more detailed analysis if you upgrade to Fitbit Premium.

We found the Versa 2's sleep monitoring, heart rate monitoring and medical condition to be the most impressive aspect of the device. Aside from that, the item is light and comfy enough to wear throughout the night without any issues. The sleep stats on Fitbit has been redesigned, and you now get a score for each night's sleep.

The Sleep Score takes into account how long you've been awake, your deep and lighter sleep cycle durations, restlessness, and REM sleep, and then generates a numerical rating. If you use the Fitbit app for free, all you get is a score.

However, if you upgrade to Fitbit Premium, you'll receive a detailed analysis of your sleep stats, including how restless you were, your percentage of REM sleep, and how much light and deep sleep you had. If you'd want to check if your sleep patterns have changed over the course of 30 days, you may do so using this app.

A new function was introduced to the Versa 2 in the December 2019 firmware update that we strongly suggest. It's called "Smart Wake" and can be found in the built-in Alarm app. You have the option to include it when configuring a wake-up call.

Regardless of the time you set your alarm for, Smart Wake activates the quiet vibration motor at the most ideal period in your sleep cycle within a 30-minute window prior to the specified alarm. Using the Smart Alarm feature, your Versa 2 will wake you up sometime between 6:30 a.m. and 7 a.m. so that you don't feel sluggish when you wake up. We've used this function on a regular basis and can attest to its effectiveness.

The Versa 2, like its predecessor and the Ionic, this device had the ability to monitor cardio fitness level that might allow users to keep track of breathing patterns while it’s time asleep. As of Versa 2's introduction, no firmware has been pushed out to the older, current Fitbit fitness smartwatch line to enable this capability.

Pros

  • Durability and Good price.
  • Aesthetic Clean Design.
  • 24/7 Heart Rate Tracking.
  • Amazon Alexa Built-In.
  • AMOLED Screen With Always-On Display.
  • Up to 5 days on a single charge.

Cons

  • Does not have a built-in GPS.
  • Lack Of Always-On Customization.

However, the oxygen level estimate function was already available to users in February 2020, which is great news for those who suffer from sleep apnea or other breathing sessions. Doctors can make faster diagnoses of underlying illnesses if they are aware of how much your breathing changes as you sleep. Even the most recent Apple Watch doesn't have this capability.

This data is tucked away in the Fitbit app's sleep scores panel. It stores heart rate data too.

However,it requires a little digging to find them. Select a night from when the function was activated by tapping on the sleep scores and then selecting a particular night. After going through the sleep phase breakdown, scroll down to view a graph showing the estimated variance in oxygen levels for that specific sleep cycle.

Fitbit Premium Subscription Plan

Fitbit Premium is an easy way to monitor your total fitness level and discover new strategies to become more active and stay healthy. Every month, you can gain access to guided exercises (15 goal-based exercises), tailored insights, and the ability to save your data for later showing to your doctor for only $9.99 (or $79.99 in the UK, which is £7.99/month or £79.99/year) or $14.99/month (or $129/year) in Australia.Fitbit Coach's step-by-step routines are also included.

At this time, it should be stated that Fitbit Premium is not a separate application. From the Fitbit app, the 'Discover' tab shows you what's available on the Fitbit Premium service, and from there, if you click on a specific option, it asks you if you'd want to sign up for the service.

If you're serious about improving your health, the paid edition of Fitbit is well worth it. However, if you're just getting started, the free app is sufficient. There hasn't been much change to the Fitbit app since its days with the Ionic, other than the addition of sleep monitoring. Each metric's progress is indicated by a clockwise-decreasing circle as you come closer to your objective.

You may establish your objectives by going to the "Account" page, which can be accessible by pressing on the tiny symbol at the top of the dashboard. Both iOS and Android have the same problem. Even if you don't already have a Fitbit, you can get one here.

Final Thoughts

The Versa 2 is an appealing option if you haven't tried the original Versa and are looking for new sports watches at a reasonable price. Design improvements and a stunning display elevate the Versa 2 to the status of a excellent fitness tracker, and the inclusion of Alexa is a welcome addition to Fitbit's lineup despite its imperfect implementation.

Despite the fact that certain messaging systems (such as Slack) aren't supported, you'll still get alerts for major services like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger as well as calendar notifications.

However, if Spotify and GPS fitness tracker were included, this near-perfect, low-cost wearable would have been much more enticing.


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