Image source: Fitbit

Fitbit OS 5.1 adds Google Assistant and more ways to track SpO2

Fitbit has started rolling out OS firmware update 5.1 for Sense and Versa 3. It brings a few handy updates such as Google Assistant support, additional ways to track SpO2 and more.

As usual, this is a gradual rollout so it might take a few days before it hits your device. You should get a notification in the Fitbit app when it is available to download.

What’s new?

The most exciting novelty as part of OS 5.1 is the ability to use Google Assistant on Fitbit Sense and Versa 3 in addition to the existing Alexa capability. This means now you have a choice of voice assistants to use with your Fitbit device. The functionality is limited to those living in the US, but Google Assistant will roll-out to other regions later this year. Note that you can only have one voice assistant activated at any one time.

Alexa has also received a boost. You now have the ability to receive audible replies from the on-device voice assistant. This feature will be made available for Google Assistant, as well, in the first half of 2021.

A further use for the built-in speaker and microphone is being made available. You can now use them to take calls right from the wrist. Pick up a call from the watch and conduct actual conversations with your Versa 3 and Sense, all without taking your smartphone out of your pocket. There is a brief setup procedure you’ll need to do to enable the functionality.

The update also allows you to see your devices activation date. This is useful information as it allows you to pinpoint exactly when your watch’s warranty begins.

More ways to track blood oxygen

Keeping an eye on your blood oxygen levels is important, particularly in conditions of the coronavirus pandemic. The company has recently introduced a watch face that allows users to do this from the wrist. Previously you could only see an Estimated oxygen variation (EOV) graph in the accompanying smartphone app. The watch face allows you to see the actual value in percent terms.

This update enables Sense and Versa 3 users to keep an eye on their blood oxygen values in the app as well. Unfortunately, the functionality is only available as part of the Fitbit premium dashboard so you will need a monthly subscription.

Those that prefer the free option will be able to continue to use the watch face. A total of 7 SpO2 clock faces will be made available by the end of this year. The company says the original SpO2 clock face has been downloaded by more than a million people so far.

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