Even if you've already settled on Fitbit for your next wearable, it can be difficult to know whether to pick the flagship Charge 5 fitness tracker or the company's ever-reliable smartwatch, the Versa 4.
Whichever you choose, you'll receive a top-notch tracking experience that's easy to access and manage through the Fitbit app. However, with the pair also sharing plenty of the same features, we've created this comparison guide.
We're here to highlight some of the key distinctions between the pair - and not just the obvious form factor differences. Dive into the details below, where we analyze whether the Charge 5 or Versa 4 offers the best blend of affordability, features, battery life and more.
As with every comparison, one of the biggest factors to consider is what you'll actually be paying. It's hugely instructive as we go on to compare the other areas of these devices, given that you should expect plenty extra from the more expensive device.
In this case, that's the Fitbit Versa 4. Though not quite as expensive as the Sense 2 smartwatch, the asking price is significantly higher than the Charge 5, while offering fewer health features.
Fitbit devices are some of the most common to receive discounts throughout their life cycle, meaning the prices above can often be bested through third-party retailers.
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Picking the right design for your wrist here is crucial, given that the rest of the differences between the pair are pretty minimal.
Practically speaking, though, there aren't actually that many differences between this pair. Both are super lightweight on the wrist, and you get a vibrant always-on display that can ably deliver the time and activity metrics on either.
It makes exercising, sleeping and general wear very similar, despite the Charge 5 measuring 36.8 x 22.8 x 11.2mm and the Versa 4 being quite a bit larger, at 40.4 x 40.4 x 12.3mm.
Compared: Fitbit Versa 4 vs. Sense 2
Really, having worn both devices extensively - and each of their previous iterations - this really is much more about the look you want on the wrist. And in that sense, it's entirely personal. Both are relatively unisex, we think, but the Versa 4 does have the benefit of blending into the general smartwatch crowd a bit more easily than the thinner Charge 5 does.
Then there are the colors, of course. The Versa 4 is available in a graphite case/ black band, silver case/blue band, rose gold case/pink band and rose gold case/burgundy band, while the Charge 5 is available in a graphite case/ black band, gold case/white band and silver case/blue band.
Aside from the look, though, you don't really get much extra in terms of functionality in the Versa 4. Both of these devices pack in an optical heart rate sensor (the Versa 4's is the more advanced multi-path sensor, but we don't believe the difference is noticeable) and blood oxygen sensor on the rear of the case, while GPS and GLONASS support is packed inside for location tracking during exercise.
Fitbit doesn't really provide much guidance around the water resistance of these two devices, but the official specs note that should both be able to withstand pressures of up to 5ATM / 50 meters, and both track swimming natively.
When it comes to feature sets, there are a couple of pretty clear distinctions to be aware of with this Fitbit pair. But let's start with the similarities.
If you're mostly interested in the fitness tracking experience here, understand that you get an identical array of features at your disposal.
That means GPS tracking is present in outdoor activities, exercise modes are selected and monitored in the same way from the wrist and you get access to features like Daily Readiness Score and Cardio Fitness Score within the app.
The basics, like calorie burn, steps and Active Zone Minutes are also available.
Things only start to differ when you look at the health tracking experience. Though still largely the same, offering impressive insights into the likes of sleep, blood oxygen saturation, skin temperature variation and HRV, the Charge 5 is actually that little bit more advanced.
Key differences: Fitbit Charge 5 vs. Fitbit Luxe
While you get high/low heart rate notifications on both devices, only the Charge 5 has the capacity to take ECG readings and check for signs of Afib, as well as continue to monitor in the background for irregular heart rhythms.
The electrodermal activity sensor is also exclusive to the Charge 5 - something that allows you to use the EDA Scan test and get an idea of your body's stress levels. We're not wholly convinced this is a game-changing feature just yet, but it is a nice-to-have for those zeroing in on wellness.
While the Versa 4 is a lesser health tracker, then, it does at least best the Charge 5 when it comes to smart features. Google Wallet and Google Maps are both available from the wrist - even if Fitbit is wiping most app support from its smartwatches - while the built-in microphone and speaker allow users to converse with Alexa.
We've tested both of these trackers thoroughly and, unlike most manufacturers, it's encouraging to note that Fitbit's battery estimations are usually pretty bang on.
With the Charge 5, you're estimated to get around a week of life with the always-on display turned off. With consistent GPS use and other interactions, we generally saw this drop to around 5-6 days.
And if you do turn on the always-on display, this drops down to around 3-4 days with the same use. It's pretty impressive, all told, and means you can access the full array of features without having to charge too often.
It's a similar story when using the Versa 4, as well. Fitbit quotes around six days of battery, and our daily drop-off - even with plenty of GPS use and interactions - tends to line up with this and be around 15%. Again, like with the Charge 5, this does increase to around 30% of use per day with the always-on screen, but it's a generally decent performance.
The Versa 4 probably slightly edges this one, if not only because of its fast charging support that provides around a day of extra life from just 10-15 minutes on the cradle.
Which is best?
In our extended reviews, we rate both of these devices as the top Fitbit models to choose from in the company's range, so plenty of which is the better pick for you comes down to whether you prefer a fitness tracker or a smartwatch form factor.
The Charge 5 undoubtedly offers a better health tracking experience, while the smarts are marginally better on the Versa 4. And areas like battery life and fitness tracking are too close to call.
With this in mind, we'd typically steer most people choosing between these two to the Charge 5, given it's usually available for a cheaper price and provides plenty of the same - if not better - experience. However, the price slashes we alluded to up top are definitely worth keeping in mind, as well as the potential for a Charge 6 to land in 2023.
Keep in mind there are also plenty of more feature-packed smartwatches than the Versa 4 out there, as well - even at its relatively low price.
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