Fitbit’s Versa Lite trades non-essential features for affordability

You still get the original Versa's long-lasting battery, vibrant display and more at the new, $200 price tag

Versa Lite is Fitbit newest and most affordable smartwatch

Last spring, Fitbit introduced the Versa, a smartwatch that dropped some of the features of the company’s previous Ionic wearable in favour of a more competitive price tag. Now, the company is adding a new ‘Lite’ model to its Versa lineup that takes that approach to its logical conclusion.

Set to cost $199.95 CAD — $50 less than the Versa and $100 less than the Versa Special Edition — when it launches in Canada next week on March 13th, the new smartwatch drops some of the Fitbit Versa’s features to achieve a more affordable price tag.

To start, the Versa Lite doesn’t include a built-in altimeter to track the number of floors users climbs as they go about their day. It also isn’t capable of swim tracking, though it’s still water resistant up to a depth of 50 metres, which is to say you can still wear it into a pool or the ocean.

Also missing is built-in music storage. Moreover, due to the wearable’s reduced amount of internal storage, some third-party Fitbit Gallery apps won’t be compatible with Versa Lite.

Likewise, support for Fitbit Coach, a first-party app that offers users a variety of guided exercises, is also missing.

The smartwatch also doesn’t include the Fitbit Pay functionality that’s only available on Versa Special Edition.

Lastly, the smartwatch ditches the more complex three physical button interface of the original Versa for a simpler one button interface.

On the surface, it appears the Versa Lite drops a lot of features but having used the original Versa for the better part of a year now, what’s missing from the Versa Lite are the Versa’s less essential features.

All of the original Versa’s best features, including its long-lasting battery, as well as bright and vibrant display, make the jump to the more affordable model intact. What’s more, Fitbit isn’t discontinuing either of the two more capable models.

Alongside the Versa Lite, Fitbit announced a variety of new bands, all of which are compatible with the Versa and the Versa Special Edition. Four new hybrid woven bands, two of which will be exclusive to Fitbit’s website, will cost $39.95 CAD. There are also six new classic silicone bands — marina blue, mulberry, scarlet, sunshine, lilac and charcoal — set to cost 39.95 CAD.

Versa Lite Edition will be available at a variety of major Canadian retailers, including Amazon, Best Buy, Indigo, SportChek, The Source, Staples and Walmart, in four new colours: white, lilac, mulberry and marina blue.

Expect a review of the Versa Lite from MobileSyrup sometime in the next couple of weeks.