January 29, 2018

Misfit Vapor Smartwatch

Misfit Vapor

Misfit VaporThe Misfit Vapor is a smartwatch that runs on Android Wear and is an ideal extension of your Android smartphone but also your iPhone.

Misfit Vapor specifications

  • Price: $199
  • Colors: Black, gold, silver
  • Size: 4.4 x 4.4 x 1.4 cm
  • Weight: 73 grams
  • OS: Android Wear 2.7
  • Smartphone: Android, iOS
  • Screen: 1.4-inch AMOLED (454×454)
  • Processor: 1.2 GHz dual-core (Exynos 7270)
  • Storage: 4 GB
  • RAM: 768 MB
  • Battery: 360 mAh
  • Connectivity: GPS, Wifi, Bluetooth
  • Other: Heart Rate Monitor, waterproof

Misfit is not the best-known brand when it comes to wearables, but the company has made interesting products in the past. Like the Misfit Ray: a fitness bracelet that actually disguises itself as a bracelet. Or the hybrid smartwatch Misfit Phase. Which looks like an ordinary watch, but is a lot smarter than it looks.

This new Misfit Vapor is a smartwatch running on Android Wear version 2.7, with the safety patch of October 2017. That is not completely recent since it is January and version 2.8 is now out.

Verdict

Misfit Vapor

Pros

  • Powered by Android Wear 2.0
  • Big AMOLED touchscreen display
  • Standalone music player with onboard storage

Cons

  • Slightly bulky
  • Connected GPS (not built-in)

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Big screen

The watch stands out because it has a round screen that is quite large (1.4 inches, or 3.6 inches in diameter) and has thin screen edges. Moreover, the OLED screen is bright and colorful. The round housing is minimalistic, but a bit on the thick side. The rubber strap does not honor the Misfit Vapor. It feels and looks cheap, despite the fact that the material again offers its advantages for athletes.

Because this smartwatch is interesting for athletes there is a heart rate monitor, GPS and the watch is waterproof, which makes a dive possible. During activities, I was always aware of the fact that I had fixed a large (vulnerable) screen around my wrist. That is something you have to take into account if you would rather use a smartwatch than a fitness bracelet.

Activity data (and sleep data) are recorded in the corresponding Misfit app, but because the Vapor runs on Android Wear you can also use Google Fit or another sports app for this Very handy.

No endurance…

Perhaps it is because of the large, clear screen. But the Misfit Vapor itself is not a runaway. I got just two days of battery life, even with minimal use. That is a bit disappointing. Charging is done wirelessly by placing the smartwatch on a magnetic plate. This picture is also connected to a USB cable. In theory, user-friendly, in practice a fiddling. At the least or slightest the watch makes no contact and does not charge it, so I often ended up with an empty Vapor in my backpack instead of on my wrist.

Well a runner

The Misfit Vapor is equipped with hardware to make Android Wear and its apps work smoothly: a Snapdragon 2100 processor (1.2 GHz and 768MB RAM) and 4GB of storage for apps for example.

Android Wear is not indispensable and I feel that Google does not know how to do that.

Android Wear

But just about the state of Android Wear. That is questionable. We are clearly working hard on the other two big smartwatch platforms. Apple understands that its Apple Watch should mainly focus on activity measurement, and you notice that the sensors and apps are well ahead of it. Samsung’s Gear watches look beautiful and are innovative in their management. Moreover, you notice that the company is working hard to get app developers on board.

But with Android Wear, it all seems a bit quiet. New versions of the operating system add little real innovation. Android Wear remains an extension of your smartphone: you can read your messages, control streams (for example, when you play a Chromecast via your phone), collecting activity and sleep data (but who is sleeping with a smartwatch?) you check balance, navigate with Google Maps, and so on. That’s pretty handy, but you can do it just as well on the big screen of your smartphone. Google Assistant has also found its way to the smartwatch, but we cannot use that from Google (or via a clumsy detour) because the speech assistant does not speak Some Country. In short, Android Wear is not at all indispensable and I feel that Google does not know how to do that. That is quite sour for manufacturers like Misfit.

Conclusion

The Misfit Vapor is a smartwatch with a nice round OLED screen, with nice thin screen edges. In addition, the watch offers that little bit extra for the athlete through the rubber strap, GPS, heart rate monitor, and waterproof construction. However, the battery life is somewhat disappointing, just like the charger. Android Wear also needs a lot more love from Google.

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