How does the Fitbit Sense 2 compare to the Apple Watch Series 8?

If you’re in the market for a new smartwatch, you may be wondering whether you should buy Fitbit’s Sense 2 or Apple’s Watch Series 8. Both are capable smartwatches and depending on your needs, you may want to get one over the other.


Let’s compare the Fitbit Sense 2 to the Apple Watch Series 8 to help you make an informed decision.


Design and screen size

On the design front, the Apple Watch Series 8 and Fitbit Sense 2 are slightly different. Apple opted for the usual rectangular design with smooth edges, while Fitbit Sense 2 is squirrel-shaped (a square with more rounded corners and sides).

Fitbit’s Sense 2 has a 40.5mm body with a 1.58-inch always-on AMOLED display, while the Series 8 comes in a 41 or 45mm body with an always-on LTPO OLED display. The Series 8 outperforms the Sense 2 at the front of the screen with its 1000 nits peak brightness, which translates to better viewing in bright environments such as direct sunlight.

For operation, both smartwatches can be controlled by touch, but you also get a physical button on the side – left on the Sense 2 and right on the Series 8. And, as has become the norm, you also get a dedicated home button (the Digital Crown) on the Series 8 that you can press or turn to operate various functions. The Series 8 comes in six colors (red, silver, gold, midnight, starlight, and graphite), while Fitbit only offers three color options (moon white, shadow gray, and fog blue).

Build quality

Both smartwatches have a robust build quality. You can choose between a stainless steel or aluminum case on the Apple Watch Series 8. Stainless steel models have sapphire crystals on the front display, while aluminum models use an Ion-X front glass. Meanwhile, the Sense 2 is made of a metal housing and uses Corning’s Gorilla Glass 3 to protect the AMOLED display. And if you like swimming, both are water resistant to 50 meters.

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Battery life and charging speed

Since battery life is one of the critical considerations when buying a smartwatch or fitness tracker, weigh your options carefully. The Apple Watch Series 8 promises up to 18 hours of screen time on a single charge, far less than the Fitbit’s 6-day battery life. Fortunately, the Apple Watch Series 8 has a power-saving mode that allows you to double the battery life.

Keep in mind, though, that the Sense 2’s impressive battery life can take a beating if you enable the always-on display and other battery-hungry features like blood oxygen monitoring (SpO2) and GPS. Despite this, Sense 2 triumphs over the Series 8 in the battery life competition. Longer battery life is one reason to buy the Apple Watch Ultra, which promises up to 60 hours in power-saving mode.

Both devices support fast charging. Fitbit estimates show that it takes two hours to fully charge the Sense 2, although a 12-minute charge can give you a full day of battery life. Apple Watch Series 8 has superior charging speeds, it only takes 45 minutes to charge from 0% to 80% and is fully charged in about 75 minutes.

While charging speed is one of the reasons for buying the Apple Watch Series 8, the Sense 2’s better overall battery life may outweigh that benefit.

Health and fitness tracking capabilities

Functionalities are another crucial area of ​​distinction between the two. For starters, they all have basic tracking capabilities you would expect from a smartwatch, such as sleep, heart rate, steps, skin temperature, speed, blood oxygen, menstrual cycles, and activity tracking.

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Additional tracking features unique to the Apple Watch include sound monitoring, fall detection, and crash detection. Series 8 also has an emergency SOS function and international emergency calls. While Apple puts a lot of emphasis on safety, Fitbit focuses entirely on mental health.

Sense 2 can help improve stress management with one of its key selling points – the improved Body Response sensor. Like the Apple Watch Series 8, the Fitbit also adds passive atrial fibrillation (AFib) detection, a feature that can continuously monitor to help detect irregular heart rhythms.

Smart Function Comparison

Both wearables have features that allow you to interact with your phone remotely. You can stay up to date with notifications, receive calls on your wrist, use voice commands, and more. They both have NFC support, allowing you to make payments via Apple Pay (Series 8) and Fitbit Pay (Sense 2).

But with cellular support on some models, the Apple Watch Series 8 is a full-fledged companion that doesn’t require you to be near your smartphone at all. And Apple goes a mile further by adding international roaming to the Series 8’s cellular capabilities.

Price comparison

The Apple Watch Series 8 starts at $399 for the 41mm aluminum version, while the 45mm model starts at $429 with no cellular support. Mobile support will cost you an additional $100. Stainless steel models are more expensive, starting at $699.

Fitbit’s pricing for the Sense 2 is much simpler (and cheaper) at $299.

Which Fitness Tracking Smartwatch Should You Buy?

Both the Apple Watch Series 8 and the Fitbit Sense 2 are sure to meet your basic health and fitness tracking needs. Fitbit’s Sense 2 beats the Series 8 in battery life and price, while the latter shines with better build quality, a brighter screen, and support for cellular connectivity.

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In addition to these fundamental differences, the Apple Watch prioritizes safety, while the Fitbit focuses more on mental wellbeing. Using this information as you consider what exactly you want to get out of the device can help you determine the best option.

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