The new Fitbit Sense is not a fitness tracker, nor is it a regular smartwatch. No, the Fitbit Sense is a 'health smartwatch' that comes equipped with a myriad of sensors to track and measure your bodily and functions and emotional state, all at once. The main appeal of the here, apart from the eye-catching design, is the ECG and AFib features, all measured on the wrist and fed into the Fitbit App.
And as of the 14 September 2020, Fitbit has received 510(k) clearance from the FDA (in the US), as well as the CE marking in the European Union, for its electrocardiogram (ECG) app to assess heart rhythm for atrial fibrillation (AFib), meaning it's not just Fitbit saying the Sense can do all these accurately.
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Having said that, the ECG function is not active at launch. It’s coming soon.
The new Fitbit Sense offers almost a week of battery life and advanced health metrics and sensors for a £100 less than the cheapest Apple Watch Series 5. This is truly the most groundbreaking fitness wearable from Fitbit and the best Fitbit to date for sure..
At the same time when it announced the Sense, Fitbit also revealed the new Fitbit Versa 3 and the Fitbit Inspire 2, not long after the Fitbit Charge 4 was announced, one of the best fitness trackers on the market today.
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Fitbit Sense: price and release date
Fitbit Sense – as well as the Fitbit Versa 3 and Fitbit Inspire 2 – is available today at Fitbit (opens in new tab) and online at select retailers. In the UK these include Amazon (opens in new tab), Currys PC World (opens in new tab), Argos (opens in new tab) and Very.co.uk (opens in new tab).
Fitbit Sense is available for £299.99 / $329.95 / €329.95 / AU$499.95 in carbon/graphite stainless steel and lunar white/soft gold stainless steel.
Fitbit Sense 3: health features
The Fitbit Sense features the world’s first electrodermal activity (EDA) sensor on a smartwatch to help manage stress, along with advanced heart rate tracking technology, a new ECG app and an on-wrist skin temperature sensor. To check stress levels, place your palm over the face of the device to detect small electrical changes in the sweat level of your skin, using the EDA Scan app.
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Admittedly, if you were stressed, you would probably know about it without having to check it on your watch but as well as checking stress levels, the Fitbit Sense can also offer ways to reduce stress through the Fitbit App and the Fitbit Premium subscription, of which you'll get a free six-month trial, included in the price.
Fitbit’s new Stress Management Score calculates how your body is responding to stress based on your heart rate, sleep, and activity level data. Ranging from 1-100, with a higher score indicating your body is showing fewer physical signs of stress, the score is coupled with recommendations to better manage stress, like breathing exercises and other mindfulness tools.
Fitbit Premium members will get a detailed breakdown on how the score is calculated, which consists of over 10 biometric inputs, including exertion balance (impact of activity), responsiveness (heart rate, heart rate variability and electrodermal activity from the EDA Scan app), and sleep patterns (sleep quality).
In the Fitbit Premium-powered Fitbit App, you track key trends in your health and wellbeing, like heart rate variability (HRV), breathing rate, and SpO2 with the new Health Metrics dashboard.
The Sense is also the first Fitbit device with an ECG app to assess your heart rhythm for signs of atrial fibrillation (AFib), a condition that affects more than 33.5 million people globally , according to Fitbit. Simply hold your fingers on the corners of the stainless steel ring around the watch while being still for 30 seconds to receive a reading that can be downloaded to share with your doctor.
Fitbit’s new PurePulse 2.0 technology, with an all-new 'multi-path' heart rate sensor and updated algorithm, delivers the Fitbit's 'most advanced' heart rate technology yet. As well as being able to monitor your heart rate more precisely – it is still not a medical grade sensor, mind – the Fitbit Sense can detect and send a notification if your heart rate is outside of your thresholds.
Fitbit Sense 3: other features and specs
Fitbit Sense also combines all of the key health, fitness and smart features found on Fitbit’s other smartwatches, including on-board GPS, over 20 on-device exercise modes, SmartTrack automatic activity tracking, Cardio Fitness Level and Score, and advanced sleep tools.
A range of smart features include a built-in speaker and microphone to take calls and reply to texts with voice commands, choice of Amazon Alexa or Google voice assistants – as predicted by us earlier this year – contactless payments, thousands of apps and clock faces through the Fitbit App and more.
The battery life is pretty long, especially considering all the features on board: the new Fitbit Sense can last for up to six days in between charges. Naturally, if you keep on checking your ECG and stress levels, the battery will probably die in no time but considering average use, it is pretty good nevertheless for a smartwatch.
The new infinity bands are said to be more comfortable and they also come with quick release hinges so you can swpa straps in and out faster. The larger AMOLED display features an integrated ambient light sensor to automatically dim the screen for easier viewing, along with an optional always-on display mode.
The Fitbit Sense also sports a completely redesigned user interface that includes the new customisable widgets, redesigned notifications and on-screen apps for a cleaner look. More information about Fitbit Sense can be found here (opens in new tab).