Google’s Wear OS platform has been lacking in compelling wearable hardware recently, but a new offering from Misfit might pique your curiosity. The Fossil sub-brand has just announced its third Android-powered smartwatch, the Misfit Vapor X. It compares very favorably with competing wearables, but it’s still hamstrung by Wear OS and the slow advances in wearable hardware.
The original Misfit Vapor turned heads with its striking design. You might remember the original Moto 360 that launched in the early days of Wear OS (then Android Wear). That watch had a round display before that was common, a minimal metal bezel, and a “flat tire” cut-out at the bottom. The first Misfit from 2017 looked like a true successor to the Moto 360 with its full-circle display and sleek body. It followed that up with a similar Vapor 2 in 2018. However, both those watches ran the older Wear 2100 chip. The new watch steps up to the latest hardware.
The Misfit Vapor X has a 1.19-inch round display and the same basic body style of past Misfit watches. It also comes with the standard 512MB of RAM and 4GB of storage we’re used to seeing with Wear OS. There’s also a 300mAh battery that Misfit estimates at 24 hours of use in standard mode.
Like the recently unveiled Fossil Gen 5 watches, the Vapor X has the newer Wear 3100 system-on-a-chip. It’s not much more powerful than the 2100, but a more efficient sensor processing platform helps ease the strain on the CPUs. It also supports additional low-power modes for better battery life. In battery saving mode, you should be able to get a few extra days of use between charges while still tracking your fitness stats and seeing notifications on the watch.
The Vapor X still has Google Fit for tracking steps and exercise, but the app still lacks many of the features available from Fitbit, Apple, and even Samsung. Misfit hopes to sweeten the deal with support for the Fossil Cardiogram app. Announced along with the Gen 5 watches, Cardiogram allegedly watches for signs of sleep apnea, diabetes, hypertension, and atrial fibrillation. The mechanism by which it does with a basic heart rate sensor is unclear.
Misfit is selling the new watch on its website right now, and it’s on sale for $200. That price is only good for a limited time, though. The watch will eventually retail for $279.99.