Fitbit Ionic vs. Fitbit Charge 3

Charge 3
 FitbitIonicBuy NowFitbitCharge 3Buy Now

Basic Info

Suggested Price$299$150

Activity & Fitness

Cycling (Bicycling)


Duration4+ days7 days


Windows Phone
WindowsNot yet




Resolution348x25066 x 18
Size1.42.721 inches


Audio Speaker


Barometer or Altimeter
Ultraviolet Sensor
Water Resistance50m5 ATM




Operating SystemFitbit OSNA

Comparing Charge 3 and Ionic

The Fitbit Charge 3 and Fitbit Ionic are popular fitness trackers designed to cater to different user goals and preferences. In the world of wearable technology, Fitbit is a reputable brand that has made substantial contributions to the industry. This comparison will highlight the similarities and differences between these two devices to help you make an informed decision when considering your next purchase.

Choosing the right watch is crucial, as it impacts not only your fitness goals but also your daily routine. The Charge 3 and Ionic each provide unique features aimed at distinct audiences. Understanding which device best suits your needs and preferences will maximize your satisfaction with the product.

Let’s dive into a detailed comparison of these devices, exploring their design and build, features and functionality, user interface and user experience, and price and value. By the end, you’ll be well equipped to decide which of these Fitbit offerings is right for you.

Design and Build

Fitbit Charge 3

The Fitbit Charge 3 boasts a comfortable and lightweight design, featuring aerospace-grade aluminium, Corning Gorilla Glass 3, and a durable elastomer wristband. Its dimensions are 12.5 x 38.8mm and it weighs 30g. The Charge 3 sports a monochrome OLED display with a resolution of 66 x 18.

Fitbit Ionic

Constructed with aerospace-grade aluminium, the Fitbit Ionic is larger and slightly heavier than the Charge 3. With dimensions of 38 x 58mm and a weight of 50g, the Ionic is more robust yet still comfortable for day-to-day wear. The Ionic features a full-colour touchscreen LCD display with a resolution of 348 x 250, making it visually richer than the Charge 3.

Comparison of design and build quality

In terms of design, the Charge 3 is slimmer and lighter, making it suitable for those who prefer a more discreet, minimalist look. Conversely, the Ionic’s larger display and more substantial build appeal to those looking for a more prominent and feature-rich device. Both the Charge 3 and Ionic offer durability and robustness, thanks to their aerospace-grade aluminium and scratch-resistant glass displays.

Features and Functionality

Fitbit Charge 3

Although the Charge 3 does not have its operating system, it comes with essential fitness tracking features like calories, steps, distance, and heart rate. The Charge 3 has a battery life of 7 days and is compatible with Android, iOS, and Windows Phone, as well as Mac and Windows computers (with limited compatibility). The device has Bluetooth capabilities, but it lacks cellular, GPS, and Wi-Fi functions. The Charge 3 also offers sleep, swim, and oxygen tracking, among other features.

Fitbit Ionic

The Fitbit Ionic runs on Fitbit OS, which provides a plethora of features and functionality. In addition to the features available on the Charge 3, the Ionic also offers GPS tracking, NFC for Fitbit Pay, and Wi-Fi connectivity. The Ionic’s battery life is 4+ days, and it is compatible with Android, iOS, Windows Phone, Mac, and Windows devices. The Ionic also has a more extensive range of fitness tracking features, including music storage and playback.

Comparison of features and performance

The Fitbit Charge 3 and Ionic both provide a comprehensive suite of fitness tracking features. The primary differences lie in the additional capabilities offered by the Ionic, such as GPS, Wi-Fi, and NFC, which are not available on the Charge 3. Battery life is slightly longer in the Charge 3, while compatibility with various devices and operating systems is more extensive in the Ionic. Overall, the Ionic presents a more complete and connected fitness experience, whereas the Charge 3 focuses on core tracking functionality.

User Interface and User Experience

Fitbit Charge 3

The Charge 3's monochrome OLED touchscreen display offers simple and responsive navigation, with customizable clock faces and app layouts. Compatibility with smartphones allows for notifications and alerts to be received directly on the device. While the Charge 3 does have access to select Fitbit apps, the options are somewhat limited compared to the Ionic.

Fitbit Ionic

With its full-colour touchscreen LCD display, the Ionic provides an engaging and visually appealing user interface. It supports a wide range of Fitbit and third-party apps and allows for greater customization in terms of clock faces and app layouts. The Ionic also provides compatibility with smartphones for notifications, alerts, and even music playback control.

Comparison of user interface and user experience

The Fitbit Charge 3 offers a straightforward and easy-to-use interface, with limited app availability and basic customization options. The Fitbit Ionic, on the other hand, delivers a more advanced and engaging user experience, thanks to its colour display, expanded app selection, and additional customization features. Both devices offer smartphone compatibility for convenient notification management.

Price and Value

Fitbit Charge 3

Priced at $150, the Fitbit Charge 3 represents a more budget-friendly option for those who want a capable fitness tracker without the added bells and whistles. Its core functionality and straightforward interface make it a solid choice for those prioritizing value for money.

Fitbit Ionic

At $299, the Ionic is a more premium offering, with advanced features such as GPS, Fitbit Pay, and a full-colour display. For those willing to spend more for a comprehensive fitness experience and additional functionality, the Ionic presents a strong value proposition.

Comparison of price and value

Both the Fitbit Charge 3 and Ionic offer excellent value, depending on individual preferences and requirements. The Charge 3 provides a budget-friendly and functional option for those seeking core fitness tracking features, while the Ionic offers a more feature-rich and connected experience at a higher price point.


Ultimately, the choice between the Fitbit Charge 3 and Ionic depends on your personal preferences, needs, and budget. For those seeking a simple, lightweight tracker focused on core functionality, the Charge 3 is an excellent option. Conversely, if you desire a more connected and feature-rich experience, the Fitbit Ionic is a worthy investment. Regardless of your choice, either device will enhance your fitness tracking endeavors and promote a healthier lifestyle.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I receive phone notifications on my Fitbit Charge 3 or Ionic?

Yes, both the Fitbit Charge 3 and Ionic provide smartphone integration for notifications and alerts, such as phone calls, text messages, and emails.

Are both the Charge 3 and Ionic waterproof and suitable for swimming?

Yes, both devices are waterproof and specifically designed for swim tracking. The Charge 3 has a water resistance rating of 5 ATM, while the Ionic can withstand depths of up to 50 meters.

Can I control music playback from my Fitbit Charge 3 or Ionic?

While the Fitbit Charge 3 does not offer music playback control, the Fitbit Ionic does provide the ability to control music playback from your connected smartphone or stored on the device itself.

Do I need a separate heart rate monitor for the Fitbit Charge 3 or Ionic?

No, both the Charge 3 and Ionic have built-in heart rate tracking capabilities, eliminating the need for an additional heart rate monitor.

Do the Fitbit Charge 3 and Ionic require a subscription service?

No, neither the Charge 3 nor the Ionic require a subscription to access their basic features. However, Fitbit does offer a Premium subscription with additional features and insights, which is available at an added cost.

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