Image source: Fitbit

New FitbitOS for Sense and Versa 3 adds HR alerts & easier SpO2 tracking

Fitbit is rolling out an operating system update for Sense and Versa 3 users. This brings blood oxygen level tracking from the Today dashboard, high and low heart rate alerts & more.

The company has not said exactly when the update will land. The current version is FitbitOS 5.1.1. So if you see a higher number than that in the smartphone app, it will contain these updates. Click on the banner to install it.

Essential reading: Best fitness trackers and health gadgets

Unfortunately the new functionality is for Sense and Versa 3 users only. It is not exactly clear why Fitbit does not introduce it to other devices. It seems as if it’s something that can be added to earlier versions of Versa, Charge 4, Inspire 2 and Luxe. Perhaps this will come in time.


SpO2 tracking

Blood oxygen tracking has benefited from a number of updates over the past year. This latest one allows you to access readings from one more place. A new tile is being added in the Health Metrics Dashboard of the Fitbit smartphone app. Once enabled it will show your nightly SpO2 average and trends from the previous week.

new fitbitos for sense and versa 3 adds hr alerts easier spo2 tracking - New FitbitOS for Sense and Versa 3 adds HR alerts & easier SpO2 tracking

Those with a premium subscriptions can look at longer term trends in the form of monthly data. They also benefit from insights that help you interpret your data.


High & low heart rate alerts

The next add-on is something that has been available on the Apple Watch and selected Garmin sports watches for a while now. High and low heart rate alerts will help you stay on top of your health.

new fitbitos for sense and versa 3 adds hr alerts easier spo2 tracking 1 - New FitbitOS for Sense and Versa 3 adds HR alerts & easier SpO2 tracking

This taps into the 24/7 heart rate tracking on Fitbit devices. You’ll need to set the high and low heart rate threashold. If Versa 3 and Sense detect that you are not exercising and your heart rate is outside of this range it will alert you. The Fitbit app will than ask you a series of questions to help assess what’s going on.

Fitbit says this feature will not be available in all markets so if you’ve updated and are not seeing it – this may be the reason. The alerts should not be used to diagnose medical conditions.


Other changes

A few more changes are packed in this update. They are as follows:

  • Hear audible responses from Google: in addition to text responses, this also adds audible responses from Google. The fact that Versa 3 and Sense have a built in speaker enable this functionality. If you don’t want to be bothered with audio responses, you can switch them off in favour of text replies.
  • Clock face switcher: makes it easier to change clock faces. A long press on the display for a few seconds will open the clocks app. You can then cycle through the clock faces saved on your smartwatch and choose the one to use.
  • New celebrations: Some more snazzy on-wrist celebrations have been added to reward your efforts and keep you motivated.

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