Fitbit's best Apple Watch rival yet goes official alongside the Versa 3 and Inspire 2

Fitbit's best Apple Watch rival yet goes official alongside the Versa 3 and Inspire 2
Fitbit was almost able to keep its latest wearable devices a secret up to their official announcement earlier today, but while the Sense, Versa 3, and Inspire 2 designs were leaked in all their glory just last week, the full details, including price tags and release dates, are only now officially out of the bag.

The Apple, Samsung, and Garmin-rivaling trio is already available for pre-order starting today, but early adopters of any of the three health-centric gadgets will have to wait until "late September" for "broad worldwide availability." Without further ado, here's exactly what each new device has going for it.

Fitbit's most convincing Apple Watch alternative to date

It can definitely get tiring and repetitive to compare every single smartwatch to the global industry leader, but with more than 50 percent of the market's total H1 2020 revenue under its belt, it's hard to ignore how Apple inspires trends and essentially dictates all the moves of its biggest rivals.

While far from a shameless Apple Watch Series 5 clone in the vein of the Wear OS-powered Oppo Watch, the freshly unveiled Fitbit Sense has a pretty clear goal: offer as many of the same capabilities as the heavyweight champion of the world as possible at a competitive price. At the same time, however, this is undoubtedly Fitbit's "most advanced health smartwatch yet", so you shouldn't be surprised that it costs $329.95, up from the $200 MSRP of 2019's considerably more basic Versa 2.

Following in Samsung's footsteps, Fitbit is releasing the Sense with a built-in ECG monitoring feature before clearing the life-saving technology for actual use anywhere in the world. Hopefully, the US-based company will score the FDA approval sooner rather than later given that Apple managed to enable its own ECG app way back in 2018.

Until the Fitbit Sense will be able to produce an electrocardiogram on your wrist, its key selling point is arguably the electrodermal activity (EDA) sensor. This is billed as the first of its kind on any smartwatch, aiming to help users better understand and manage their stress levels by detecting small electrical changes in the sweat on your palm's skin.

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As the name suggests, the Fitbit Sense is an absolutely sensor-packed smartwatch, also including SpO2 (blood oxygen saturation) technology, skin temperature detection, and of course, a state-of-the-art heart rate monitor capable of alerting you as soon as a major variation is observed, potentially signaling issues like bradycardia or tachycardia.

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In addition to all these ways the premium new smartwatch can help you stay healthy and fit, the Sense also has a high-quality glass-and-metal build going for it, as well as a large and sharp AMOLED display, standalone GPS functionality, a battery life of more than six days on a single charge, a built-in speaker and microphone, wrist payment support, and both Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant integration.

A reasonable price point and a remarkable list of features

Although the Fitbit Versa 3 comes with a far less impressive list of sensors and health monitoring capabilities than its costlier cousin, the $229.95 MSRP makes the Versa 2 sequel a very smart buy for those who can't afford the Sense... or the Apple Watch Series 5.

Basically, this is a Versa 2 with built-in GPS technology, a speaker and microphone for voice calls (with a tethered Android smartphone), native Google Assistant support adding to the existing Alexa functionality, and a refined design that's however not as durable or as eye-catching as the Sense looks. 

That obviously wouldn't have been enough to give the hugely successful Apple Watch Series 5 a run for its money, not to mention the fast-approaching Series 6, but in conjunction with its high-end sibling, the Fitbit Versa 3 definitely makes sense (pun very much intended).

An ultra-low-cost activity tracker with an almost unbelievable battery life

If you thought the 6-day battery endurance scores of the Fitbit Sense and Versa 3 were impressive, wait until you hear how long the Inspire 2 fitness band is supposed to last between charges. Are you ready? The company claims this otherwise modest thing can keep the lights on for up to 10 days on a single charge, and in case you're wondering, the Fitbit Inspire 2 does come with 24/7 heart rate monitoring, replacing both the first-gen Inspire and Inspire HR.

Priced at an extremely competitive $99.95, the Inspire 2 undercuts the $130 Garmin Vivosmart 4 while sporting a "brighter, more vibrant" screen than its forerunners, as well as a decidedly stylish design (for an ultra-affordable activity tracker), advanced sleep tools, menstrual health tracking, top-notch water resistance, and plenty of other basic activity monitoring capabilities.

On top of everything, the Inspire 2 includes a 1-year Fitbit Premium subscription at no extra cost, which actually eclipses the six-month trial bundled with the Versa 3 and Sense smartwatches. Fitbit Premium can help you understand your body even better than the company's standard tools and features, "connecting the dots" across your activity, sleep, and heart rate and providing personalized guidance to live a healthier life.

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