Fitbit Versa review

An affordable alternative to the Ionic and even the Apple Watch

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Our Verdict

While its feature set isn’t quite on par with that of its bigger brother the Ionic, the Fitbit Versa feels like the same watch but with a lighter and friendlier design and a much lower price point.

For

  • Lightweight design
  • Fitbit’s most customizable wearable
  • Relatively low price

Against

  • Rounded design won't suit everyone
  • Battery life not as good as Ionic
  • No GPS

The Fitbit Versa is positioned by the San Francisco-based health tech firm as a smartwatch, with a new, lighter design in comparison to previous devices, more personalization options, and with a battery life of over four days.

It’s not so long ago that Fitbit released its flagship wearable, the Fitbit Ionic, and the Versa was launched fairly swiftly after this new device because the company has said that the Versa merely “builds on the success” of its slightly older and more feature-rich sibling. 

In a bid to make a Fitbit smartwatch more attractive to those not looking to spend £300 / $300 / AU$450, the Versa comes with a price point that's much easier on the wallet by removing some of what made the Ionic more of a premium purchase. That includes features like GPS.

The Versa also replaces the Fitbit Blaze in the company's range of products, which means we won't be seeing a Fitbit Blaze 2 launching anytime soon. But now that Fitbit has launched the fitness-focused Charge 3 is the Versa still the best of the line-up?

Read on below to learn everything that stands out about the Fitbit Versa and how we feel about the smartwatch.

Fitbit Versa price and release date

  • The Fitbit versa costs £199.99 / $199.95 / AU$299.95
  • It's the cheaper alternative to its bigger brother, the Fitbit Ionic

The Fitbit Versa is a cheaper alternative to the company’s flagship Ionic smartwatch, which was its most expensive wearable to date when it was released in late 2017.

Priced at £199.99 / $199.95 / AU$299.95, it is a replacement of the Fitbit Blaze running watch but still costs more than the Samsung Gear Fit 2 Pro for instance, though significantly less than the Apple Watch 3 and the newly-released Apple Watch 4

The Fitbit Versa is available in silver, black or rose gold as well as several watch strap color combinations.

The Fitbit Versa undercuts the Ionic but still isn't cheap

The Fitbit Versa undercuts the Ionic but still isn't cheap

Design and display

  • New, more accessible ‘squircle’ design
  • Brilliantly bright and clear display
  • Lightweight and comfortable

For the Versa, Fitbit hasn’t just updated the design of one of its previous or existing wearables; it’s given it a completely fresh look and perhaps one that seems more Pebble-like and Apple Watch-esque than any of the company's previous devices.

It boasts what Fitbit is calling a ‘Squircle’ watch face design, that is, a square face with rounded edges - in case you needed that spelling out.

Despite its silly design name, the Versa is a much more handsome and friendly-looking watch than many of the firm’s previous devices, especially the Ionic, which we have to admit we weren’t the biggest fans of.

In comparison, the Versa is pretty nondescript and thus harmless looking, ensuring your eyes are left to concentrate more on what’s happening on the display than around it.

Although we loved it, it's worth noting that the 'Squircle' might not appeal to everyone.

The Versa’s anodized aluminum case and slightly tapered and angled design is said to make it the firm’s lightest smartwatch yet

The Versa’s anodized aluminum case and slightly tapered and angled design is said to make it the firm’s lightest smartwatch yet

The Versa isn’t only aesthetically pleasing, but probably one of the most comfortable smartwatches Fitbit has made thanks to its lighter weight. 

Fitbit claims the Versa is one of its lightest smartwatches yet due to its ultra-thin, anodized aluminum case and slightly tapered and angled design that has been built to fit small or large wrists.

However, this lightweight material does make it feel a little cheap at times, something to keep in mind if you’re wanting the Versa to be more of a lifestyle watch and you like the weighty, premium build of fancy watches.

The Versa sports a wake-up/back button on the left-hand side and two smaller pause/finish workout buttons on the right

The Versa sports a wake-up/back button on the left-hand side and two smaller pause/finish workout buttons on the right

On the left-hand side the Versa sports one main wake-up/back button, while on the right there are two smaller pause and finish workout buttons. These are easy enough to press and proved to work perfectly while using the Versa for both focused exercise and day-to-day wear.

The traditional watch-style clasp is super easy to fasten and release, while retaining a good grip during intense workouts; something we prefer to those modern button-style straps some smartwatches and activity trackers have these days.

As with the Ionic, these straps are also interchangeable with many different colored metal, fabric or silicon versions in case you want to change up the watch style entirely.

The Versa’s strap is comfortable and also interchangeable with many different colored metal, fabric or silicon versions

The Versa’s strap is comfortable and also interchangeable with many different colored metal, fabric or silicon versions

As for the Versa’s display, it’s a vibrant, colorful touchscreen with a brightness up to 1,000 nits. This means that even in direct sunlight or underwater it’s easily visible, even when not turned up to the maximum brightness capacity.

Touch commands also seem to be much improved over the Ionic, which seemed to suffer a little from latency. Now commands seem to be fluid and uninterrupted.