This post was originally published on the Fitbit press site. It has been adapted from its original format.
Fitbit today announced several new software updates, bringing advancements to its popular smartwatches and Fitbit Premium membership service so you can put your health and fitness goals front and center this holiday season and into the new year. The release of OS 4.1 for its smartwatches powers new sleep features and greater functionality right from your wrist. Fitbit Versa 2 will boast an enriched always-on display mode, expanded capabilities for Amazon Alexa Built-in and a new advanced heart rate algorithm featuring the best tracking yet, all while giving you up to 6+ days of battery life to make the most of your days (and nights).
Fitbit is also continuing to roll out new content and tools to enhance your Fitbit Premium membership, including a personal wellness report, developed in consultation with leading medical professionals from institutions like University of California, Los Angeles and University of California, San Francisco. In addition, over the coming months, Fitbit will be rolling out new programs, challenges and wellness content, plus workouts from popular brands like Daily Burn, Down Dog, Gaiam, POPSUGAR and Whil.
“Staying motivated to maintain your health and fitness routine is really hard around the holidays. We’re focused on making it more achievable through a combination of affordable devices, engaging software and our Premium membership to help you stay on track,” said James Park, co-founder and CEO of Fitbit. “The new FitbitOS update and added Premium features give users even more support with innovative smartwatch tools, fresh workouts, new programs and more, setting users up for success going into the new year.”
More essentials, right on your wrist
The OS 4.1 update brings highly-anticipated features announced with Versa 2 to Fitbit Ionic as well as the entire Fitbit Versa family of smartwatches. Among the latest in Fitbit’s innovative sleep tools, OS 4.1 delivers smart wake, a silent on-device alarm you can set to wake you with subtle vibrations at an optimal time in your sleep cycle so you can start your day feeling more refreshed. Smart wake uses machine learning to wake you during an optimal time of your sleep cycle while in light or REM sleep within a 30-minute interval prior to the start of your set alarm. You’ll also receive your nightly Sleep Score on-device, giving you a glanceable view of the quality of your night’s rest alongside all of your sleep stats and data.
OS 4.1 goes even further to help you maximize your day, adding more innovative new features that provide enhanced functionality and improved usability. The new agenda app will help you take on the day to live your best life and help manage your daily schedule on-the-go. One of the most requested updates, the new clock face switcher, lets you store up to five of your favorite clock faces from nearly 4,000 available in the Fitbit App Gallery directly on-device so you can quickly and easily swap clock faces to match your outfit, your activity or mood. A new five-star rating system has been updated within the Fitbit App Gallery, allowing users to rate and recommend their favorite apps and clock faces with the Fitbit user community.
Specific to Versa 2 users, Fitbit has doubled-down to enrich the recently-launched always-on display mode to deliver five additional clock face options. Now in color, these feature full health and fitness stats, with faster transitions between always-on and active views, all powered by the device’s AMOLED display, touting a 2+ day battery life. In fact, the battery life is so strong on Versa 2 that even when it’s in always-on display mode, it lasts more than double what the Apple Watch Series 5does, so you can keep tracking vs. charging. Amazon Alexa Built-in functionality has also been expanded for Versa 2 users so you can use your voice to start any of the now 20 exercises from your wrist through the Exercise App. For example, you can ask Alexa to start a run with Fitbit and automatically start tracking against your personal fitness goals and daily activities.
Known for long battery life across all its devices, when you do finally need to charge, a new feature will kick-in when battery levels reach 8% to notify you your battery is running low and automatically disable select features so your smartwatch can stay on your wrist, not the charger. That means you can do even more, 24/7, so even when you’re sleeping, your fitness companion is working hard for you to track your stats and equip you with useful information about your health and wellness. These updates, along with the full suite of Versa 2 features like 24/7 heart rate tracking, connected GPS, swim proof design, the Spotify app and Fitbit Pay are available across all Fitbit smartwatches.
Advanced heart rate algorithm uses machine learning to deliver best tracking yet
Fitbit’s advanced 24/7 PurePulse heart rate tracking keeps users motivated and informed with an easy way to track your heart rate throughout the day. The technology also powers essential Fitbit features, such as Sleep Stages and Cardio Fitness Score, that provide you with deeper insights into your overall health and fitness.
Today Fitbit is announcing it has been working on a highly innovative algorithm that will deliver the best heart rate tracking experience yet on a Fitbit device to Versa 2 as part of the OS 4.1 software update. The new PurePulse algorithm, designed in-house by Fitbit R&D experts, uses machine learning to recognize the unique signature of heart rate in the optical sensor, leading to higher accuracy overall.
Even more information, support and motivation with Fitbit Premium
Fitbit is continuing to expand its Premium service that’s available now to millions of users in 17 markets across the globe with a new wellness report, an expanded library of new workouts from third parties, and more motivational tools like new guided programs and activity challenges over the next few months to help support and guide you in reaching your unique health goals.
With your new, personalized wellness report, you can view an in-depth analysis of your Fitbit activity, sleep, heart rate and weight trend data for the previous 30 days or past year for long-time users. You can share this with your healthcare professional, personal trainer or nutritionist to review your health trends over time, to better identify a potential health issue or help manage ongoing conditions. The reports were developed in consultation with a variety of clinicians and incorporates feedback from leading medical professionals from UCLA and UCSF. This was to ensure the report is valuable to medical professionals, and provides a more holistic overview of a person’s overall health and wellness data outside the doctor’s office, so you can take control of your health and have more informed conversations with your care team. Learn more about the wellness report here.
Premium’s library of thousands of workouts has also expanded with exciting new offerings from popular brands. This includes a variety of workouts from the energetic and motivational trainers at Daily Burn and POPSUGAR, alongside yoga sessions from Down Dog and Yoga Studio by Gaiam focused on strength, flexibility, balance and restoration. Premium members also gain access to a new “mindfulness” section in the Discover tab of the Fitbit app, with a variety of mindfulness and meditation sessions and mini-courses from Whil, as well as breathing exercises and soothing audio tracks designed to help you wind down and get ready for bed.
Premium continues to add new programs, like Kick Your Salt Habit and Habits for Restful Sleep, designed to provide additional support and motivation along your health and wellness journey. New adaptive, collaborative and customizable challenges and games are coming to Premium in the next few months. These include an All for One challenge to work with your family and friends toward a shared goal, a Custom Challenge where you choose a specific activity and duration to compete against and an interactive game of Get Fit Bingo where the first to complete a row or pattern of activities wins.
FitbitOS 4.1 will begin rolling out to Fitbit smartwatch users the first week of December, just in time for the holidays to stay on track with goals, and as you look ahead to set new ones in 2020. Fitbit Premium members can already access and enjoy many of the latest updates, with the rest rolling out on an ongoing basis in the coming months.