Fitbit Updates Ionic Smartwatch With More Apps

Fitbit Updates Ionic Smartwatch With More Apps

Fitbit Updates Ionic Smartwatch With More Apps

One early criticism of the Ionic was that it could only run a handful of apps, while thousands of apps were available for Apple's (aapl) Apple Watch, Samsung's Gear line, and the many smartwatch models that run Google's (googl) Android Wear software. Called the Ionic, this Fitbit wearable boasted a long battery life, water resistance, and the ability to make payments. Now you'll be able to find nearby restaurants with Yelp, control your smart home devices with Nest and Philips Hue Lights, get the latest news from Flipboard and The New York Times, and even summon an Uber, all from your wrist.

This new update also brings more than 100 new watch faces (or clock faces) to the Ionic, adding to the other 17 pre-installed faces. But alas, for the last few months, many folks have lamented the rather limited functionality of the Fitbit as a result of its limited selection of apps. Plus, Fitbit is partnering with Deezer to bring the streaming music service to Ionic in 2018. Now, Fitbit is tackling both concerns - and more - with the smartwatch's first major update.

Fitbit is tackling some of the biggest concerns about the Fitbit Ionic with its first major update.

Fitbit Updates Ionic Smartwatch With More Apps
The Fitbit Ionic's first major update adds new apps and watchfaces

Fitbit is also introducing Fitbit Labs, which is a way for the company's Research & Development team to test potential new features in the form of experimental apps and clock faces. One new watch app on the way from Fitbit Labs will track tennis swings and offer a shot breakdown to help users improve their game, for example.

At-a-glance access to your personal friend network with the new Fitbit Leaderboard app. See where you stack up against family, friends and coworkers as you motivate each other to reach your goals.

Support for multiple cards - You can now choose which card you want to use for Fitbit Pay directly on the Ionic; supported banks are up to 25 in 13 different markets. Throughout my time with the Fitbit Ionic, I've found Fitbit OS to be too laggy, nearly to the point where I don't want to wear the watch at all. It released the gadget in October with only a few apps to its name - then proceeded to leave the brand new OS alone for nearly two months without a software update.

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