Fitbit Versa 3 vs. Fitbit Versa 2

Wearable Technology

Fitbit started in 2007, and through several hugely popular devices became the fifth largest wearables company in terms of shipments in 2019. More than 100 million devices have been sold, and the brand has over 28 million users.

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Is Fitbit Versa 3 or Fitbit Versa 2 best?

Fitbit’s first Versa smartwatch was launched in 2018, and it took on a look similar to the Apple Watch. While it had a lot of the same features as the Fitbit Ionic, it lacked the built-in GPS and used a connected GPS instead. 

A year after the initial Versa’s release, the company unveiled the Versa 2. It added some new features and a sleep tracker. Less than 12 months later, the Versa 3 hit the shelves. With the smartwatch market saturated for choice, it can be difficult to decide between the two models. 

Fitbit Versa 2

Fitbit Versa 2

The second edition of the Versa smartwatch comes in a sleek design packed with features. It has built-in compatibility with Amazon’s Alexa, new sleep tools and additional fitness features. It retails for around $180 on Amazon.

Fitbit Versa 2 pros

As a fitness tracker, the Versa 2 logs all your activities throughout the day. It can track your steps, distance, calories burned, active minutes and stationary time. It can also track your sleep cycle and give you tips on how to get a good night’s rest.

The always-on display makes it easy to see what’s going on. You simply lift your wrist or glance at the watch and all the data of your workout shows on the display. With built-in Amazon Alexa, you also don’t need a free hand, as you only have to ask Alexa a question.

You can wear the watch in the pool or the shower, as it has water resistance up to 50 meters. It can track your swimming routine, as well as 20 other exercises like running, biking and yoga. By setting goals for an activity, the smartwatch tells you in real time how close you are to reaching them.

If you’re not sure what workout to do or how to do them, the on-screen workouts can play on your wrist. These guide you through each move and adapt based on your feedback. This comes in handy with the daily reminders to stay on track.

For monitoring your vital signs, the Versa 2 is capable of giving you a stress management score, guided breathing sessions, 24/7 heart rate tracking, cardio score and skin temperature. It also has a built-in oxygen saturation monitor.

Fitbit Versa 2 cons

The Versa 2’s display uses OLED technology, and while that works perfectly well, the bezels around it are rather thick. If you’re used to a sleek smartwatch with a seamless display all around, the Versa 2’s bezel will definitely stand out.

The always-on display is definitely a pro, but it does come with a caveat that you might not like. Your choice is limited to a digital clock or an analog one, and both display in gray scale. It would have been much better if Fitbit added some color to the always-on function.

Another function that the Versa 2 lacks is a GPS. Without it, you won’t be able to accurately track where you are or how far you’ve gone if you don’t have your paired mobile device with you. It might not be a deal breaker, but you don’t always want to go jogging with a mobile phone in your pocket.

Fitbit Versa 3

Fitbit Versa 3

The Versa 3 launched a year after the Versa 2 and offers a lot more features. In addition to the built-in GPS that the Versa 2 lacks, it also features active zone minutes. It retails for around $225 on Amazon.

Fitbit Versa 3 pros

The built-in GPS has been one of the most requested features from a Versa device, and the inclusion of the third version made it a viable smartwatch option. This means you can track more activities than the previous, and you don’t need your connected mobile phone with you.

To tie into the GPS, the Versa 3 features an intensity map that shows you the route you took while running and the intensity of different sections. These show through colored lines, making them easy to interpret.

The Versa 3 also has the always-on display, but here Fitbit made the necessary changes that the Versa 2 didn’t have. There are hundreds of clock watches to choose from, and you can store up to five on the device at a time.

The touch screen also makes it easy to swipe through actions and select options. The bezel is somewhat reduced from the Versa 2, opting for a rounder and much smoother design of the display.

For customizability, you can change the strap from a huge selection. The device has a fast charging option. Speaking of charging, with the always-on display, you can expect to get about three days of battery life. If you turn that off, that stretches to around six days without needing a recharge.

Fitbit Versa 3 cons

For all the added features and new software capabilities, there are still some aspects where the Versa 3 could be better.

When you compare the Versa 3 to the Fitbit Sense, the health statistics available are somewhat lacking. Especially for running; you would be better off getting a specialized sports watch.

It also doesn’t have the ability to give you a personalized training schedule. On other smartwatches, this tells you which heart rate zones you should be exercising in to reach your goals.

And as with the Versa 2, you also need to have a subscription to Fitbit Premium if you want additional tracking functions and statistics. With that said, the new PurePulse 2.0 sensor for tracking your heart rate can be inaccurate at times.

Fitbit Versa 3 vs. Versa 2: Which should you get?

The Versa 2 is a great fitness tracker if you don’t need all the bells and whistles. It has sufficient data collection that can help you achieve your fitness levels, and it looks good on your wrist as well.

But the Versa 3 has more functions that put it one step ahead of the previous model. While both models use OLED screens, the display on the Versa 3 has a higher resolution. The latter is 336 x 336 pixels, while the Versa 2 is 300 x 300 pixels.

Another similarity is that both have a built-in SpO2 sensor, but only the Versa 3 comes with the GPS. This is a huge addition over the Versa 2 and could be a deal breaker. So who wins the battle of Fitbit Versa 2 vs. 3?

It depends on your activity schedule and workout routine. However, the approximate $45 price difference is well worth the internal upgrades. Whether you’re looking for your first smartwatch and tracker or want to upgrade, the Versa 3 packs more features and has better value for what you get.

 

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Charlie Fripp writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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