Misfit Vapor vs. Fitbit Ionic: Which Smartwatch Will You Prefer?

By | April 17, 2018
(Last Updated On: May 1, 2018)

It seems that there is always a new smartwatch being introduced to the market every day. This is a good thing because, with more choices, you can pick one that is perfect for your needs and budget. Two of the more notable smartwatches today are the Misfit Vapor and the Fitbit Ionic.

Which one should you buy?

Misfit Vapor

The Misfit Vapor is a smartwatch that can track your activities. It runs on Android Wear 2.0, so if you are an Android Wear user, then the Vapor’s screens and user interfaces will be familiar to you. The Vapor does not just track your activities, it also plays your music. Just load your MP3s on the watch itself and listen via a Bluetooth headset.

The Vapor also connects to your phone and uses its GPS, allowing you to find your way around. However, this means that you would need to bring your phone with you in order to track locations.

As far as functioning as an activity tracker is concerned, the Vapor is quite suitable. There are no outstanding features here, but it certainly can hold a candle against similarly priced smartwatches. It can track your heart rate, steps, and other metrics rather accurately.

Design

There are eight color combinations available for the Misfit Vapor, as well as a choice of three casing colors: black, stainless steel, and rose gold. You can combine it with the following strap colors: blue, black, beige, and desert. You can also choose the stainless steel or the rose gold link bracelet.

Also, one of the first things you would notice when you look at the Vapor is that it looks quite thick.

There are three ways to interact with your Misfit Vapor: through the touch screen or through the button found on the 3 o’clock side of the watch. Or you can use the virtual touch bezel. You can run your fingers around the watch’s bezel to scroll through the screens.

What could be better

The Misfit Vapor is a stunner, and it is a good activity tracker for its $200 price tag. While it does have sleep tracking, it is probably one of the features that you would not be able to use much. The reason for this is that the battery on the Vapor lasts only around a day, maybe a little bit more. This means that you would need to recharge it overnight as you sleep.

Fitbit Ionic

Fitbit is a known name in the activity tracking devices space, and with the Fitbit Ionic, the company proves once again that it is committed to coming out with better devices with more features every time.

Fitbit Ionic makes it easier for you to track your activity, even coming up with features that log your exercise without doing anything. It also has a more accurate heart rate tracker with new algorithms. The Ionic is very accurate and reliable in measuring and logging your entire day’s activity, the steps you took your sleep quality and sleep duration, and the calories you burned, among others.

What’s more, the Ionic has a good set of smart feature. For one, it gives you another screen for your mobile phone. The Ionic can notify you when you get a call or a text, tell you when your next meeting will be, and even update your Facebook friends.

With a built-in NFC radio, you can pay for your purchases with only your wrist. You can also stream online music, customize the watch face, and can work with Windows Phone devices on top of iOS and Android devices.

The Ionic looks good, too. Boasting a retro geeky chic look with its square watch face, the Ionic comes in three different color mixes: blue-gray and silver gray, blue and orange, and black and gray. You can also buy different straps if you want to sport different looks for different occasions.

Comparing the Misfit Vapor and the Fitbit Ionic

Features and functionalities

Looking at the features and capabilities of each smartwatch, you would see that when it comes to the sensors included, both have a gyroscope and accelerometer. The Fitbit Ionic, however, has ambient light sensors, GPS, and GLONASS, while the Misfit Vapor does not.

Model  Fitbit Ionic  Misfit Vapor
Accelerometer  Yes  Yes 
Gyro  Yes  Yes 
Light  Yes  No 
GPS  Yes  No 
GLONASS  Yes  No 

Metrics tracked. When it comes to the metrics that you can measure with each smartwatch, you can use both the Ionic and Misfit Vapor to count steps and calories burned, see how long you have been active, and get reminded to move around when you have been idle for a while. Both also measure your sleep quality and duration.

Model  Fitbit Ionic  Misfit Vapor 
Metrics measured and tracked  Metrics measured and tracked  Metrics measured and tracked 
Steps  Yes  Yes 
Heart rate  Yes  Yes 
Calories burned  Yes  Yes 
Active minutes  Yes  Yes 
Inactivity alerts  Yes  Yes 
Distance  Yes  Yes 
Sleep quality  Yes  Yes 
Hours slept  Yes  Yes 

Other functionalities and features. The best thing about these smart watches is that they can do other things than just tell time or measure your activity. They can also function as a timer, an alarm clock, and a stopwatch. They can also send you reminders and help you set goals and achieve them. The Fitbit Ionic can even coach you in real time.

Model  Fitbit Ionic  Misfit Vapor
Timer  Yes  Yes 
Alarm clock  Yes  Yes 
Stopwatch  Yes  Yes 
Reminders  Yes  Yes 
Plays your music  Yes  Yes 
Goal setting  Yes  Yes 
Real-time coaching  Yes  No 

Similarities between the Misfit Vapor and the Fitbit Ionic

Both of these smartwatches have an astounding design and really good aesthetics. You can use other straps to change up the look of your smartwatch, too. Both have Wi-Fi connectivity, as well as the same 5 ATM water resistance rating.

Where they are different

The operating systems used on both watches are different. Ionic uses Fitbit OS while the Vapor uses Android Wear 2.0. There are advantages and disadvantages to both.

Using Android Wear 2.0 for Vapor, Misfit has access to a wide range of apps that are already available, as well as access to future apps. In effect, Misfit is able to just concentrate on making its design better.

Fitbit OS, on the other hand, allows Fitbit to customize the Ionic in ways that they could never do with Android Wear.

Another difference between the two smartwatches is that Ionic uses a combination of stainless steel and aluminum for its body, making it weigh less than the Vapor, which uses brushed stainless steel.

Furthermore, the Misfit Vapor and the Fitbit Ionic have differently shaped watch faces. The Ionic has a squarish shape, which allows it to have a bigger display, while the Vapor has the classic round face that most people prefer.

Where Misfit Vapor wins

The AMOLED display on the Misfit Vapor is definitely a plus factor because it delivers a brighter and crisper display than the LCD display on the Ionic. However, brightness and visibility even under direct sunlight is less of a problem on the Ionic because of the 1,000 nits brightness.

Vapor also gives you more storage space with 4 GB of memory on board, compared to only 2.5 GB for the Fitbit Ionic. Misfit Vapor also has cellular connectivity and a microphone, something that the Ionic does not.

What’s more, you can save around $100 when you opt for a Misfit Vapor.

Where the Fitbit Ionic wins

The Ionic has a slightly bigger screen. It also has Corning Gorilla Glass 3 protection to keep the display more resistant to scratches. With the Vapor, you need to buy a screen protector if you do not like the idea of scratches showing up on the watch face.

Fitbit Ionic has an NFC transmitter that allows you to pay for your purchases wirelessly. It also has a loudspeaker and GPS.

Side-by-side comparison

To make it easier for you to decide between the Fitbit Ionic and the Misfit Vapor, here is a table that lists down their respective features.

  Fitbit Ionic  Misfit Vapor 
Price  $299.95  $199.99 
Face shape  Squarish  Circular 
Display size (inches)  1.42  1.37 
Display type  LCD  AMOLED 
Resolution (pixels)  348 x 250  326 x 326 
Pixels per inch  302  326 
Dimensions (inches)  1.15 x 0.8 x 0.48  1.73 x 0.5 x 1.73 
Interchangeable strap  Yes  Yes 
Materials used  Aluminum, stainless steel  Brushed stainless steel 
Storage  2.5 GB  4.0 GB 
Operating system  Fitbit OS  Android Wear 2.0 
Bezel  No  Virtual touch bezel 
Vibration  Yes  Yes 
Loudspeaker  Yes  No 
Microphone  No  Yes 
Wi-Fi  Yes  Yes 
GPS  Yes  No 
Cellular  No  Yes 
NFC  Yes  No 
Water resistance  5 ATM  5 ATM 

 Final recommendation

The Misfit Vapor is a good smartwatch for its price. It certainly performs rather well and there are barely any complaints about it. However, doing okay in a sea of competition means that others will only drown you out. One of the competitors that the Vapor should dread is Fitbit Ionic. The Fitbit Ionic just trumps the Misfit Vapor in almost every aspect.

For example, if you want to be totally free of your phone when you run, work out, or bike, then you should definitely get the Fitbit Ionic. The Ionic has an embedded GPS, and its NFC payment feature allows you to get a Gatorade from the convenience store and pay for it with just your watch.

The Ionic also has a longer battery life than the Vapor. This is one of the advantages of Fitbit having its own proprietary OS.

To put it simply, while the Misfit Vapor is a good activity tracker, the Fitbit Ionic is better in many respects. For example, those who are into weight training or gym workouts would definitely prefer the Ionic.

This does not, however, mean that you should snub the Vapor outright. It is $100 cheaper than the Ionic and has a better screen. So if NFC, an embedded GPS, and a real-time personalized coaching feature do not matter to you, you can definitely save money and still get good activity tracking and smart features with Misfit Vapor.

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