Fitbit Ionic

Fitbit introduces their first smartwatch on the market with the Ionic. Fitbit is known for amazing fitness trackers and when they moved over to try their hand at a smartwatch, they kept to their roots. The Ionic may be lacking in some of the qualities you would expect from a smartwatch, but if you are looking for a superior fitness tracker then the Ionic is where it is at. Fitbit does it again with the Ionic. You can do everything that you could do on older Fitbit's, like track your steps, heart rate, sleep, and calories burned, but you get so much more with the Ionic. You can now go swimming with your Fitbit, as the Ionic is water resistant up to 50 meters. Customers love that they can finally wear their trackers in the pool. They revamped their design a little and improved the heart rate monitor on the underside of the tracker to help you get a better, more reliable read of your heart rate. The Ionic may not look the most elegant or fancy, but it has customizable watch faces and interchangeable bands to make the watch more unique to each person. The addition of onboard storage for music and built-in GPS means that you can leave your phone at home when you are running or working out; it is just one less thing to carry on your person. Customers have fallen in love with the Ionic!

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Backcountry Link
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rei.com Link
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Road Runner Sports Link
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Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Stores music and allows you access to your Pandora playlists
  • Water resistant up to 50 meters
  • Small and Large size bands
  • Personalized fitness coaching
  • Good battery life
  • Built-in GPS 
  • Integrated Apps
  • Cons
    • Expensive
    • Bulkier than past Fitbit's
    • Lacking as a smartwatch 
    • Music can be difficult to set up on watch
    • Some apps and software might feel buggy
    • Key Features
      Activities
      The beauty of the Fitbit Ionic is that you can do almost anything in it and it tracks a plethora of activities. First and foremost, it will track your walking and running steps, but there are so many more things you can track on it. You can track things like biking, swimming, yoga, and weight lifting manually through the tracker itself or through the Fitbit app on your smartphone. If you do not want to manually track your activities the Fitbit will automatically record your workout after 10 minutes of movement. The tracker will choose what it thinks you are doing, so it is not always accurate on what the actual activity is that you are doing so you might want to watch out for that.
      Basic Features
      The Fitbit Ionic is first and foremost a fitness tracker and as such does all of the basic things you would expect from one. The Ionic will help you keep track of your steps, how far you have walked, how many calories you burn, how many flights of stairs you climbed, how many active minutes you have had through the day, and your hourly activities. The Fitbit will also track your sleep cycles at night, letting you know how long you spent in light, deep, and REM sleep. Finally, the Fitbit Ionic will also keep a continuous and automatic record of your heart rate and track your heart rate zones for you.
      Advanced Features
      The Fitbit Ionic goes above and beyond being a fitness tracker with some great new additions and added capabilities that customers have fallen in love with. Fitbit finally gives you a tracker that can be worn in the pool, as this watch is water resistant up to 50 meters. The Ionic allows the wearer to store up to 300 songs directly on the device, or it allows you to access your Pandora playlists, so you can listen to music more conveniently while out and about. Another great feature is the NFC chip that now comes built-in to the Fitbit. The chip allows you to access your credit card information and allows you pay for items with Fitbit pay. Finally, one of the best new features that customers have praised, is the built-in GPS. Runners love the fact that the GPS is built right into the device and does not have to be connected through your phone like the past versions of Fitbits.
      Accuracy
      Accuracy is important in a fitness tracker, as you are going to want something that is going to keep a record for you of how many steps you take, your heart rate, etc. You would not want to walk 10,000 steps a day but only have 6,000 steps counted, it would be discouraging to those who give themselves step goals. The Fitbit Ionic is reliable when it comes to tracking your activities. Along with the actual activity tracking, the Fitbit will also help you calculate the number of calories you are burning a day. The calorie count is generally fairly accurate, assuming the user inputs their information (height, weight, etc.) correctly. It is definitely a good tool to use if you are watching your calories in vs calories out.
      Connectivity
      Connectivity, when it comes to fitness trackers, is important because they work in conjunction with other devices, such as a smartphone or computer, to help you keep track of everything. When it comes to the Fitbit Ionic, some people have reported issues with slow connectivity when trying to link their tracker to their computer, but once the tracker is connected things go smoother.

      The Ionic can connect to your smartphone through Bluetooth and will allow you to receive your notifications directly to your device which can come in handy if you are in the middle of a workout and do not have your phone out in front of you. The downfall of the Ionic, however, is that you cannot respond to notifications from the tracker. You may be able to see your messages, but you will have to pull your phone out if you want to respond.
      Apps
      The Fitbit Ionic comes with about a dozen different pre-installed apps for you to start off with. When you set up your new device you will already have alarms, weather, timer, music, and today (which shows you your daily progress). There are some third-party apps available for download which are useful, but there are not too many to choose from. You can download the Pandora app and link it to your account which is nice because then you will be able to access your playlists when you are working out. Customers definitely say that they wish there was more app support for the product and they are hoping to see some more choices in the future.
      Comfort
      Customers have commented that the Fitbit Ionic is very comfortable and lightweight. Weighing less than other smartwatches, the Ionic is a better, more comfortable choice for you to wear while hitting the gym. Users have said that the tracker feels great, not only working out but on an everyday basis. The watch will not get in the way of your everyday activities, and since it is waterproof you can even wear it into the shower with no worries. The bands of the Fitbit are easily interchangeable so swapping them out is a piece of cake. If the band you get when you purchase the Ionic does not feel great on your wrist there are many other more comfortable bands on the market to choose from.
      Style
      Customers have had some complaints on the style of the Fitbit Ionic. The Ionic definitely has the look of a Fitbit with its aluminum frame and plastic or leather wristbands, and not the smartwatch look the company was going for with this one. The tracker definitely fits in at the gym, but it is not as elegant looking as one might expect based on the money they paid for it.

      One of the better qualities of the Ionic is that you can personalize it to the style that best fits you. There are many different styles and colors of bands to choose from so you can pick whatever fits your personality the best. In addition to the bands, you can change the watch face of the Ionic to make it just a little more unique to your tastes.
      Durability
      If you are going to invest a good deal of money into an item, you are going to want it to last and not have to worry about it breaking before you get a decent amount of use out of it. You do not have to worry about that with the Fitbit Ionic, as it is a consistently durable tracker. Many wearers were worried about the clips that hold the bands on breaking because of the ease of which you can change them out. Surprisingly, after a lot of wear and dozens of band changes, consumers have commented that they have not had any problems with the clips breaking and that the new band stays in place as snuggly as it did when the watch was purchased.
      Face
      Reviewers seem to both love and hate the face of the Ionic. The actual shape and look of the face can use a lot of work, as customers do not particularly like the large, rectangular screen with the large aluminum bezel. The same reviewers, however, love the customizable watch faces, and the quality of the screen itself. One reviewer even went as far as saying that it was one of the brightest and sharpest displays that they had ever seen from a smartwatch. You should have no problem with being able to see the screen of the Ionic, even in the brightest of conditions. The colors on the display are bright and vibrant with a sharp image to boot.
      Band
      The Fitbit Ionic makes changing the bands exceptionally easy with a quick release feature. The Ionic comes with two different bands when you purchase it, the small and the large band, so you can take the guesswork out of deciding what size you will need. The bands that come with the Fitbit are silicone and some customers have said that they are not a fan of the feel it. The great part is that there are a plethora of bands to choose from out there so you can find something that is going to work the best for you. There is definitely no shortage of bands to choose from.
      Sizes Available
      Fitbit took the guesswork out of picking a size for the Ionic. You no longer need to know what size band you will need when purchasing the product, which is nice. You wouldn't want to get home and open your Fitbit only to discover that you chose the wrong size. The new Ionic comes packaged with two different size bands for you to choose from. The small band fits wrist 5.5 inches to 6.7 inches and the large band fits wrists 6.7 inches to 8.1 inches.
      Ease of Use
      As with all smartwatches and activity trackers, the Ionic requires some kind of knowledge of technology for use. The set up of the device is the hardest part of the tracker and can sometimes be a pain. Once you get through the initial set up, the tracker itself if fairly easy to use.
      Power Source
      The Fitbit Ionic is battery powered with a pretty impressive battery life. A full charge will allow you to run the Ionic for 4+ days without needing a charge, or approximately 10 hours of use with the built-in GPS turned off. The Fitbit only needs about 2 hours to reach a full charge so you can charge it in a hurry if you have to. There is a charger that comes with the tracker when you purchase it.
      Price
      The Fitbit Ionic comes with a hefty price tag, ringing in at $299.99. This is definitely on the high end compared to the launch price of past iterations of the Fitbit. It is important to note, however, that this is more than just a fitness tracker, it is Fitbit's first try at a smartwatch. The tracker might be expensive but it is durable and a great fitness tracker, and although the smartwatch features may need some work, all together it is a good tracker.
      Accessories
      The Fitbit Ionic comes with the fitness watch itself, as well as two bands (sizes small and large) as well as a charging cable. There are no other accessories that come with the tracker, but there are other bands that can be purchased separately to help you personalize your watch.
      Key Features
      -Comes with small and large wristbands that are easily changeable
      -Long battery life
      -Built-in GPS (no phone connection needed)
      -Water resistant up to 50 meters for tracking swimming
      -Battery charge time of 2 hours
      -Comes in three colors
      -NFC chip so you can pay with Fitbit pay
      -Onboard memory to store 300+ songs
      -On-screen workout coach
      -Sleep tracking
      -Tracks many different activities
      Bottom Line
      If you are looking for a fitness tracker first and a smartwatch second then you should consider the Fitbit Ionic. The Ionic really is an amazing fitness tracker, allowing you to track dozens of different exercises, stages of sleep, heart rate zones, and so much more. If you forget to start a workout on your tracker, don't worry, after 10 minutes of movement, Fitbit will automatically start tracking for you. The smartwatch side of the Ionic still needs some work, but it isn't terrible. You can get apps, like Pandora so you can listen to your music without needing your phone. You can also receive notification on your device which is convenient. Even though the Ionic is on the higher end when it comes to cost, it really isn't a bad investment when it comes to a Fitbit.
      Where to Buy
      Backcountry Link
      See Deal
      rei.com Link
      See Deal
      Road Runner Sports Link
      See Deal
      By Jessica Brown
      Last updated:
      Where to buy
      Best offer on: Aug. 03. 2021

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