Fitbit may be best known for its wearable fitness trackers, but it has now entered the third generation of its Versa smartwatch series. The Versa 3 is the direct successor to last year’s Versa 2, and while it may now arguably be overshadowed by the Fitbit Sense (also released this year), it features built-in GPS, a new PurePulse 2.0 monitor, as well as support for Google Assistant and Alexa.
It seems to offer a better all-round package than its predecessor, but is it really the best Fitbit smartwatch of the two? To find this out, we compared the Fitbit Versa 3 and the Versa 2 across five categories. Hopefully, this will help you to decide which is the device for you.
|Fitbit Versa 3||Fitbit Versa 2|
|Display size||1.58 inches||1.34 inches|
|Body size||40 x 40 x 12mm||40 x 40 x 12mm|
336 x 336 pixels
|300 x 300 pixels|
|Touchscreen||1.58-inch AMOLED display||1.34-inch OLED display|
|Wireless interface||Bluetooth 5.0, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, NFC||Bluetooth 4.0, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, NFC|
|Ambient light sensor||Yes||Yes|
|Heart rate sensor||Yes||Yes|
|Battery life||6+ days||6+ days|
|Price||From $230||From $200|
|DT review||News||3 out of 5 stars|
Design and display
The Fitbit Versa 3 and Versa 2 look similar at first glance, but Fitbit has introduced a number of subtle differences that distinguish the Versa 3 from its predecessor. It features a slightly curvier outline and softer edges than the Versa 2, something Fitbit claims will improve comfort. More noticeably, it’s also bigger than the older model, sporting a 1.58-inch AMOLED display compared to the Versa 2’s 1.34-inch OLED screen. This increased size may please those who prefer bigger screens, although it may mean that the Versa 3 will feel a touch bulkier.
Things are also fairly even when it comes to display size. At 336 x 336 pixels, you may suppose that the Versa 3 offers sharper visuals than the Versa 2, which manages 300 x 300 pixels. However, this works out at roughly 300 pixels per inch, while the Versa 2 offers around 316 ppi. This means you’ll be hard-pressed to find a significant difference in display quality between the two smartwatches, even if the slightly larger screen of the Versa 3 might seem more impressive.
The Versa 2 currently offers more color options, at six compared to the Versa 3’s three. Both also offer a selection of woven bands that can be purchased separately and used instead of the basic band that comes in the box.
Given the very small differences between the two smartwatches, this round can only be a tie.
Fitness and health tracking features
The Fitbit Versa 3 and Versa 2 are again evenly matched in terms of the health-tracking features. Both smartwatches can be used to track steps, distance, calories burned, and active minutes. They also offer 24/7 heart tracking, as well as sleep tracking and menstrual health tracking.
One significant difference is that the Versa 3 offers built-in GPS for the first time in the Versa series’ history. This will be a big plus for runners and cyclists, since it will enable geographical tracking of outdoor activities and will let users access features such as heart zone maps.
Another departure is that the Versa 3 introduces the PurePulse 2.0 heart monitor. By collecting more data points and using machine learning, it should provide more accurate and more finely grained heart data than the Versa 2. For anyone who wants to examine their work and heart rates more closely, this should be a plus.
This is another close round, but with in-built GPS and a new heart rate monitor, the Versa 3 takes the win.
Winner: Fitness Versa 3
The Versa 2 boasts a battery that can endure six days on a single charge, and so does the Versa 3. However, the Versa 3 takes the lead in this department thanks to its newly added fast charging, which provides a full day’s charge in just 12 minutes. This isn’t something the Versa 2 can match, so while its battery is just as capable as the Versa 3’s, we declaring this round a narrow victory for the newer model.
Winner: Fitbit Versa 3
The Versa 2 and Versa 3 both allow you to do things that aren’t related to workouts, such as reply to messages on Android smartphones, control music streaming, and pay for in-store purchases via Fitbit Pay. They also provide Do Not Disturb modes, as well as the ability to use a wide variety of normal, non-health-related apps.
One difference is that the Versa 3 houses the aforementioned PurePulse 2.0. This processes more data points related to your pulse, while it also harnesses machine learning to analyze for heartbeat patterns. In practice, this should result in more accurate and detailed heart rate information, something that could make the difference for users looking to evaluate their performance and health at a more granular level.
Another new special feature is the inclusion of support for Google Assistant. The Versa 2 already provided Alexa as a built-in voice assistant, but the Versa 3 offers the choice between Amazon and Google’s rivals. If you prefer Google Assistant, it may be the better choice.
These additions may not be massive, but they’re enough to give the Versa 3 the edge in this round.
Winner: Fitbit Versa 3
Price and availability
The Fitbit Versa 2 and Versa 3 are both available now, from Fitbit and various major retailers such as Amazon and Best Buy. The Versa 2 retails at $200, while the Versa 3 will set you back $230.
You can purchase additional accessories for either smartwatch while you’re checking out. Fitbit offers woven straps and Fitbit Premium memberships, which allow you to set custom goals, participate in challenges, and access coaching.
Overall winner: Fitbit Versa 3
The comparison between these two devices is neck and neck. Overall, we think the Fitbit Versa 3 just slides past the Versa 2. Fitbit manufacturers added the built-in GPS, Google Assistant, an updated heart monitor, and fast charging to the device, making it slightly more competitive than its fantastic predecessor. On top of that, the Fitbit Versa 3 is actually just $30 more than the Versa 2. The slight price difference is all the more reason to pick up the newer model.
Of course, we think the Fitbit Versa 2 is still a fantastic product. The display is just as strong and vibrant as the Versa 3. We can’t complain about the battery life, either; It lasts just as long. When you compare the fitness-tracking apps and features between the two, the GPS and upgraded pulse-monitoring are the only features the Versa 2 doesn’t have. If you want to pocket the extra $30, then you can’t go wrong with the Versa 2. Beyond that, we recommend trying out the newer model.
- Fitbit Versa 2 vs. Fitbit Versa
- Best cheap Fitbit deals for April 2021
- What to expect from Google I/O 2021
- The best cheap Fitbit alternatives for workouts
- Best cheap smartwatch deals for April 2021