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Fitbit Sense 2: Everything we know and what we want to see (Updated: July 1)

Keep up to speed with the latest surrounding Fitbit's next flagship smartwatch.
By
July 1, 2022
fitbit sense review running metrics
Jimmy Westenberg / Android Authority

Update: July 1, 2022 (12:30 PM ET): We’ve updated our Fitbit Sense 2 hub with new hints regarding an interesting design detail gleaned from a deleted video.


Original article: May 24, 2022: The original Fitbit Sense landed in 2020 as the company’s most advanced smartwatch, laden with new sensors and packing the loftiest price yet. While it might not look or function too differently from the Fitbit Versa 3, the original Sense brought new features not yet seen on any of its trackers thus far. With that in mind, can we expect the same with the Fitbit Sense 2?

The likely sequel to the flagship Fitbit could be just around the corner, but what do we know so far? We take a look at the latest news and rumors, and rundown some of the Fitbit Sense 2 features we’d like to see.

Will there be a Fitbit Sense 2?

The Fitbit Sense display showing watch face
Jimmy Westenberg / Android Authority
Sense

It’s tough to imagine that Fitbit will cancel the Sense series, even if the first edition model was a mildly upgraded Versa. There’s also evidence that a Sense 2 is on the way. An APK teardown performed by 9to5Google suggests that a smartwatch codenamed Hera or Rhea could be the company’s new flagship. The other would likely be the Fitbit Versa 4.

Fitbit hasn’t confirmed that it is working on a Sense sequel, but in an interview with CNET, Fitbit CEO James Park notes that both the Versa and Sense lines will “continue to be very important” in its future.

See also: The full Fitbit buyer’s guide

When will the Fitbit Sense 2 release date be?

A Fitbit Sense follow-up is well overdue. The company’s original flagship launched back in September 2020, so we wouldn’t be too shocked if the Sense 2 launched in September 2022. Keep in mind the Google Pixel Watch‘s expected October 2022 launch. Given Google owns Fitbit, it’s unlikely that Google would want to launch the two devices in the same month.

See also: Pixel Watch? Nope, I am way more excited for the Fitbit Sense 2

What features will the Fitbit Sense 2 have?

Design

Details garnered from 9to5Google‘s teardown mentioned above hint at a few design decisions. The Fitbit Sense 2 could pack a 336 x 336 display — that’s the same resolution panel used on the original Sense and Versa 3. This detail also hints that the Sense 2 will share similar dimensions with its predecessor.

In June, a now-deleted video from a company known for manufacturing device accessories showcased how users would be able to apply a screen protector to the Versa 4 or Sense 2 (via 9to5Google). The video didn’t differentiate the two devices, which suggests the two could share design underpinnings with the original Sense. This largely backs up everything we know about the device so far, including the screen resolution. Either way, don’t expect a vastly different Sense sequel.

Rumors also suggest that the Fitbit Versa 4 may include a physical button, as seen in the leaked image above, ditching the inductive groove used on the Sense and Versa 3. We wouldn’t be surprised if the Sense 2 packs a button, too. It was among the most criticized features of the flagship smartwatch.

Specs

As for specs, we expect the Fitbit Sense 2 to continue its “advanced” smartwatch slant. The original Sense brought ECG, EDA, and skin temperature sensors and we expect all three to return on the Sense 2. But what else could be added?

In 2021, Fitbit started a public study investigating whether pulse data is a viable method to track blood pressure on the original Sense. There’s little indication that Fitbit would introduce its blood pressure monitoring tech on the Fitbit Sense 2. While the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 does include a blood pressure monitoring feature, it’s unclear if Fitbit is ready to offer its implementation.

See also: The best Fitbit alternatives

What will the Fitbit Sense 2 price be?

The Fitbit Sense display showing watch face
Jimmy Westenberg / Android Authority

Fitbit bills the Sense as its top-end smartwatch, and we expect the same premium positioning with the Sense 2. That said, we can probably expect Fitbit to offer the Sense 2 around its predecessor’s $299 asking price but likely no more than the $399 required for the Apple Watch Series 7 and Garmin Venu 2.


Fitbit Sense 2: What we want to see

LTE model with emergency features

Fitbit Sense review on wrist GPS connecting
Jimmy Westenberg / Android Authority

Fitbit has always shied away from pure smartwatch features, focusing on health tracking and fitness instead. It’s a formula users have appreciated, but it has left the otherwise premium Sense lacking features offered by rival devices — one of which is LTE support.

LTE support is by no means a must-have feature, but it would enable smarts that active users would appreciate. An LTE model would allow phone-free music streaming from Spotify and Deezer, and allow Fitbit to build capable and reliable emergency features with fall detection. Realistically, you wouldn’t need an LTE model to accomplish the latter, but it would give users who train without their smartphones some peace of mind.

Physical button

Fitbit Sense review inductive button side case
Jimmy Westenberg / Android Authority

An inclusion that also made our Fitbit Versa 4 wishlist is a physical button. While the inductive groove makes for a sleeker body, and you get used to its quirks over time, it can be a chore to find and tap while on the move. When not on the go, the groove often disregards taps, too. A leaked image of the Versa 4 suggests a physical button could return, so it wouldn’t be too farfetched to imagine this design feature making it to the Sense 2.

Improved performance from Fitbit OS

Fitbit Sense review watch face showing apps for exercise, Strava, and EDA scan
Jimmy Westenberg / Android Authority

Fitbit OS’s refresh, as seen on the Versa 3 and original Sense, made for a more pleasant user experience, but the OS itself remains jagged and awkward when scrolling through menus or opening apps. As we mentioned in our Versa 4 wishlist, we want to see Fitbit iron out the stutters prevalent in its smartwatch OS. This isn’t a major issue, and Fitbit OS offers plenty of advantages over competing OSes, from simplicity to battery endurance, but it sure lacks refinement.

More differentiation from the Versa series

The Fitbit Versa 3 and Sense were too similar. Besides the near $80 premium at launch, the Sense only really brought three additional sensors to the table. The true usefulness of these sensors was also debatable, considering the steep asking price. We’d like to see some more differentiation between the Sense and Versa lines, especially if Fitbit intends to offer upgrades to both series. Considering that the Versa 4 and Sense 2 could use the same screen, it’s unclear how Fitbit will make the latter a more attractive package.

Better implementation of existing sensors

fitbit sense review eda sensor eda scan app 1
Jimmy Westenberg / Android Authority

Finally, we have to mention those sensors once more. The ECG, EDA, and skin temperature sensors are helpful additions, but we’d like to see more thoughtful use of the data garnered.

The Fitbit app doesn’t do a good job informing how the EDA data garnered impacts your overall health, nor why a particular reading is notable. The context is lacking. While the EDA figure does inform the overall stress score, in combination with heart rate variability, its inclusion doesn’t add much to the overall stress tracking experience. Taking an ECG reading is also a little too convoluted, forcing users to head to the Fitbit app before they can take a reading. No ECG results are visible on the watch itself, and these results hide within a PDF in the Fitbit app. It’s all a bit too clunky, but nothing Fitbit can’t fix with a rethink.

See also: The complete Fitbit user’s guide

Which upgrade would you like to see most on the Fitbit Sense 2?

168 votes

That’s everything we want to see on the Fitbit Sense 2. Which features do you desire most? Is there anything you feel we missed? Be sure to vote in our poll above.