Polar recently announced the successor to the Ignite: The Polar Ignite 2. So I got the details and worked out for you what the differences are. So if you want to decide on buying an Ignite or Ignite 2, I hope this article helps. I’ll list all the differences and what they encompass and why they matter. At the end I’ll link to some shops and their prices where you can buy the watches. These are (mostly) sponsored links. They don’t cost you anything extra, but I get a small fee when you do buy something. But let’s get on to the watches.
In brief the overview of what’s new on the Ignite 2. I’ll go more in-depth about these items later in the article.
- Added Music Control watch face
- Added Weather forecast watch face
- Added Weekly Training Summary watch face
- Added Watch Face customisation (chose which you want to see)
- Added Energy Sources (what you ‘burn’ to get moving)
- Improved battery from 17 hrs to 20hrs
- Battery Saver modes (GPS up to 5x longer)
- Broadcast HR data over BLE to 1 device during workout
There’s not a lot different on the outside and yet there is. For one, the colours have changed and there’s a new color: blue. Furthermore the bezel now has a beautiful texture. Giving it a more refined, luxurious look and feel. There’s no white edition, that has moved to ‘Champagne’ and the Copper edition is replaces by a blue version. Lastly, the black version is all-black, so no stainless steel bezel (it’s still stainless steel though). But I got to hand it to marketing for coming up with the names. Black Pearl, Storm Blue. That’s creative.
It still has one smooth button which didn’t get a texture like the Vantage M2.
The body upgrade was also applied to the wrist bands. A softer, more stretchy material is used making for a more comfortable fit. As you want to wear your watch a bit more snug during a workout to get a proper HR reading this is definitely an improvement. And then you can also buy Swarovski crystal embellished wrist bands. I gotta admit, they look pretty swish:
New Features on Ignite 2
I’ve listed them above briefly, but let’s dive into what makes the Ignite 2 different from the previous version. I’ll list them all again with what everything specifically means.
The new Ignite gets a music controls watch face. Using its touch screen you can then control the music on your phone, whether it be Spotify, Deezer or something else. So no local storage, you still need to bring your phone along. A useful addition as on a run you can leave your watch in an arm strap and not be bothered about it. In the field it works, but the touch sensitivity of the Ignite series is still a bit bothering.
This feature was introduced in 2020 with the release of the Grit X, where you can get little icons at every hour on your watch face. Since the Ignite doesn’t have a full round watch face, there is still a cut off at the bottom, this looks slightly different:
So you ‘only’ get 3 hours of forecast on the watch face, but if you go deeper you’ll still get the hours following. And hey, three hours still is enough for a quick glance. If you want to go on a run or a ride, you want to get a bit more insight anyway, temperature and wind direction are in the details for example.
Weekly training summary
A watch face that shows the total effort of your work in the past week. The detailed view will give you more about the HR zones and activities, but also calories burned and distance covered.
watch face customization
This is great, as you can move through the watch faces it’s also nice to be able to select which ones are there. Garmin calls these widgets. Polar calls them watch faces. The difference is that Garmin reverts to the actual watch face after a timeout. On the Polar watches you can ‘stay at it’. I personally like having the weather forecast right there as my workout stuff I’ll look at when I plan on working out. And weather, while I’m actually only going to for runs and rides, is still my favourite.
This is a really interesting one and is directly available on the polar flow app. The Energy Sources gives you insight in what your body uses as fuel to give you energy. Fat, Carbs or Protein. This will give you insight in the results of your workout if you are aiming for burning fat for example. As a last resort, your body will start burning protein. In the screenshot you’ll see a run where I ended up using a little bit of protein towards the end. But I was quite fatigued. What you can also see is that the two intervals I had were both carb burning. The Ignite doesn’t have FuelWise, so you’ll have to use this information to help you change your nutritional strategy manually.
The default battery life of the Ignite has been improved from 17 to 20 hours. And I mention default as it doesn’t stop just there. The Ignite 2 has a power save mode. In this mode you can stretch the battery life to a whopping 100 hours. Now this 100 hours is obviously not a realistic time span for a workout, unless you plan on doing the Barkley Marathons (Check it out on Netflix!). But you should read this as: with the power save mode you can stretch your battery life up to five times the estimate. So if you’re going on a long ride or day hike, and you forgot to charge, this is super useful.
Heart rate sharing
A useful feature that will come in handy in the gym or when you’re using Zwift for example, is that the new Ignite 2 can broadcast your heart rate data over Bluetooth. While I’m writing this, the HR-broadcast function is still in beta and the UI isn’t great. But it works and I trust Polar to make it work a bit better as its a nice selling point they are also bringing to other watches so it’s not just one device they are developing this for.
You may have already seen the prices and noticed the Ignite 2 gets the same price as the Ignite. This should make your choice easy, right? Well, yes. And no. As the Ignite can be found on special every now and then, which will probably take a while before we see that for the Ignite 2. I’m expecting those prices to drop at around Black Friday or Amazon Prime Day. As for the Ignite, I’ve seen the Ignite go for as low as $183 and €130 on Black Friday.
Just a note about the “links to buy” in this article, as they are sponsored. I do look for the lowest price I can find at the time of writing in a handful of stores, but by using the links I earn from qualifying purchases made through these links.