Fitbit is making a bunch of features available it promised when it announced its Versa smartwatch a couple of months back and that includes new female health tracking features.
All Fitbit-owning women will be able to access these new features from the iPhone and Windows Fitbit smartphone apps from this week. Android phone owners, you'll have to hold on until later in the month before you can get access. If you own an Ionic or Versa, you should also be able to view the new data from your smartwatch.
Essential reading: Women's health tech is on the verge of something big
That new data includes menstrual tracking, which was apparently one of the most requested features by Fitbit users. You'll now be able to log your cycle and record symptoms such as headaches and cramps. Fitbit's analyses this data to predict where you are in your menstrual cycle and when the next one is coming.
There'll also be user guidance for ovulation, fertility and tips to debunk common misconceptions. There will also be groups in Fitbit's Community service for women to connect over. In the future, Fitbit hopes to use all this menstrual data to offer insights about how sleep and exercise impact your period and vice versa. For instance, it could recommend more sleep in the coming week because a bad period is on the way, or suggest easier ways to exercise if you're feeling too tired.
Improved notification support and new health apps
Along with the female health tracking, Android users do get the upper hand with the addition of quick replies letting Ionic and Versa owners respond to texts and messages from the likes of WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger.
The new notification feature should be automatically turned on for any supported apps that send notifications to your watch. When you get that vibrating buzz that a notification has come through, you'll be able tap to expand it and scroll down to reply.
There's a 60 character limit for responses and you can pick from five pre-populated responses (that can be customized) with the defaults set to the following:
- Sounds good!
- Can't talk now, will reply later
- What's up?
Dont't worry emoji lovers, Fitbit has got your back too. So if you aren't great with words or you find it quicker to say it with a yellow face, you can use the likes of love struck face, smiley face, crying with laughter face, winky face, heart icon, sad face, crying face, thinking face and the running emoji instead.
Last and by no means least, Fitbit is introducing a host of new apps and watch faces for its two smartwatches that are aimed at helping users manage conditions such as diabetes and cancer. We know that Fitbit has been making a concerted push into serious health tracking and the addition of eight new healthcare apps to its Fitbit Gallery app store proves that it's not wasting any time in turning its wearables into health monitoring devices.
Dexcom is among the companies offering a Fitbit smartwatch app to improve diabetes management relaying blood glucose data from Dexcom's devices to the watches to sit alongside activity data. The One Drop app, which is available now, will allow users to be able to sync Fitbit intraday data to their One Drop accounts to see their glucose data on their smartwatch. A Diplomat Pharmacy app is on the way and will help users to manage treatments with medication and prescription reminders.
Additional apps from Fitabase, Go365 by Humana, Limeade (available this week), Sickweather and Walgreens (available now) have also been announced. Fitbit says that all of the apps will be live and available to download for Ionic and Versa user by summer 2018.
How we test