There was a lot of attention given to Android Wear last month, mostly because it finally showed signs of life after a long period of stagnation. That said, when it comes to wearables, especially ones oriented towards fitness and health, the Apple Watch and Fitbit’s wide selection still dominate the market and people’s minds. Fitbit’s future under Google and Android Wear is a bit uncertain, despite assurances, but this latest update to its two smartwatches puts it ahead of some Android Wear smartwatches that still lack one popular biometric.
Given the COVID-19 pandemic, people have been paying more attention to warning signs coming from their bodies. Although not as accurate as professional medical equipment, sensors in smartwatches and even some phones can still give an estimate of how well you’re body is doing. Measuring things like heart rate is now a common feature in smartwatches but few can take Sp02 readings.
Sp02, which represents blood oxygen saturation, measures the amount of oxygen in your blood. It can be an indirect indicator that the blood and the rest of the body may not be getting the proper amount of oxygen needed to keep the body functioning properly. It is also one of the things that hospitals and doctors monitor in case of a COVID-19 infection.
Some of Fitbit’s smartwatches have long integrated with Google Assistant, allowing users to speak their thoughts instead of typing them. Ironically, Google couldn’t answer them back, at least not by voice. This latest update finally gives Google a voice and lets it provide responses both in text as well as audio, and the latter can be turned off in case users prefer Google to be silent.
Sp02 tracking and audible Google responses are coming to both the Fitbit Sense and the Fitbit Versa 3. The Versa 3 can now also notify users of low or high heart rates, a trick the Sense already knows. Fitbit hasn’t yet disclosed when the FitbitOS update will be rolling out to owners of these devices.