Do More on Your Wrist With the Best Smartwatch
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Finding Your Next Highly-Rated Smartwatch: A Buyer’s Guide
Smartwatches have outgrown their traditional role as time-telling accessories for your phone and become insightful and independent virtual assistants. With larger screens, built-in LTE technology, and more powerful processing capabilities, the latest smartwatches operate independently and more efficiently than ever, with tons of apps you can download to make your life easier.Don’t be fooled by the big names, catchy taglines, and unique designs, because there are many lemons in the smartwatch market. That’s why we put together a list of the leading smartwatches of 2023, and you can prepare for your purchase by going through the buying guide included toward the end of the article.
Apple Watch Series 7 Smartwatch
Fitbit Versa 2 Smartwatch
Great Budget Option
Garmin Vivoactive Smartwatch
Impressive Battery Life
Samsung Galaxy Smartwatch
Top Android Watch
Fossil Gen 5E Smartwatch
Phone Compatibility and IndependenceRuling out smartwatches that aren’t compatible with your phone and also can’t operate independently is important to narrow down your choices. If you have an iPhone, an Apple Watch is hands down the most compatible smartwatch you can buy. Fitbit is the next most compatible smartwatch, but your iPhone won’t allow you to take calls and make quick replies on these devices. Smartwatches running on the latest Wear OS are incompatible with iPhones, whereas Tizen-powered wearables provide limited functionality.If you own an Android phone, a smartwatch powered by Wear OS is your top choice for maximum utility. Samsung watches running on Tizen with Samsung Wear (different from Google Wear OS) are also closely competitive, but they aren’t as futureproof.
Aesthetic featuresLuxury brands and renowned watchmakers like Fossil, Michael Kors, Montblanc, Armani Exchange, TAG Heuer, and Hublot (to name just a few) offer a wide range of elegant smartwatches powered by Wear OS that feature complete health-monitoring functions. You can tailor the looks of these smartwatches to your or your loved ones’ taste, but be mindful that not all designer smartwatches are equally customizable with third-party bands.
Customization and Personalization Options
Software customizationWear OS has removed differences in software customizations, such as watch faces, applications, and widgets. The number and quality of watch faces available on older smartwatches vary widely from one Andriod watch to another, and third-party applications such as Watchsmith, Facer, and Watchmaker feature high-definition, professional designs that are compatible with many smartwatches.
Hardware customizationThird-party wristbands, screen covers, and full-body protectors are available for every smartwatch. If you choose a top-selling smartwatch from a popular brand, then you’ll have a wide range of high-quality personalization options to choose from.
LifestyleVery few smartwatches offer protection against water damage up to 50 meters, but you can look for an IPX7 rating if swimming is a part of your lifestyle. An onboard GPS sensor can be extremely helpful for runners as this eliminates the need to carry a smartphone with you, but onboard GPS is also unfortunately limited to a few high-end smartwatches.
Health Monitoring and Fitness Tracking
Health monitoring functionsTo get the most detailed health analysis, you can look for a third-generation ECG sensor, heart rate, pulse oximeter, and SpO2 sensor. The smartwatch’s health app analyzes the data collected by these sensors to provide helpful insights into your body and its condition.
Fitness trackingActivity tracking (such as a pedometer and cardio tracking) using GPS and an altimeter is one of a smartwatch’s most useful features. These calculate the intensity of your workout using data from heart rate and pulse monitors. Sleep is just as important as exercise, and the latest smartwatches are continuously improving their sleep tracking algorithms using data from the same sensors.
The Apple Watch Series 7 Smartwatch packs a whole world of value on your wrist — it can be a style statement, a fitness partner, a digital assistant, a health and wellness monitor, a mindfulness guru, a digital wallet and key, and more.This smartwatch features a 20% larger display, increased protection, and faster charging than previous models, and its third-generation ECG monitor, blood oxygen sensor, and always-on altimeter help it track fitness levels completely. There are countless band options available, both official and from third-party sellers, to make this smartwatch truly yours, and its advanced features, integration with Apple products, and powerful operating system make this smartwatch the top choice on our list.
- Advanced health monitoring functions
- High-quality, durable build
- Compatible with Apple devices
- Wide range of customization
- Overnight charge lasts only eighteen hours
The Fitbit Versa 2 Health and Fitness Smartwatch features built-in Alexa and Google Assistant support for a more user-friendly experience. Each day, this smartwatch will provide you with a Daily Readiness Score based on the previous day’s stats that tells whether you’re ready for exercise or if it’s instead time for some rest and recovery.This smartwatch’s built-in GPS can help you track your movements, and it monitors active zone minutes that gauges your resting heart rate and buzzes when you’ve been sedentary for a while. This smartwatch can be a great choice for those with an active lifestyle, and its short charging times can offer you up to six days of use on a single charge.
- Water-resistant up to 50 meters
- Monitors heart rate 24/7
- Up to six days of battery life
- Comes with a six-month Fitbit premium subscription
- Some features require premium subscription
The Garmin Vivoactive 3 Smartwatch was released in late 2017 and is a predecessor of the Vivoactive 4, but you won’t miss out on any core features and will save a good chunk of change by opting for this model instead. This smartwatch features complete health monitoring, activity tracking sensors, and onboard GPS, and you can take advantage of contactless payments, sports tracking, guided exercises, and more.You can pair this smartwatch with iPhone and Android devices, and its impressive battery life can last up to seven days on a single charge. Not only can this smartwatch help you stay connected to your phone and keep up with what’s going on in your life, but it can also help you get in touch with your body and monitor your fitness and stress levels as well.
- Long battery life — up to a week
- Various apps and downloadable widgets available
- Sends smart notifications
- Monitors fitness and stress levels
- Lower resolution and display size than competitors
The Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 Smartwatch is a top choice thanks to its display quality, screen size, Bluetooth connectivity, protection, and battery life. It has the most advanced health-tracking features and includes a BioActive sensor for measuring body composition, and it also measures sleep, blood oxygenation, ECG, and stress levels using the latest sensor technologies.This smartwatch can also help you track and improve your workouts, and you can connect it to your Samsung smartphone for a more user-friendly experience. You can take advantage of a whole host of apps with this smartwatch, including Google services, YouTube, and contactless payments, and you can pick it up in a variety of classy color tones.
- Impressive high-resolution display
- Comprehensive monitoring and tracking sensors
- Wide array of apps available
- High-quality design and construction
- Not compatible with iPhones
The Fossil Gen 5E Smartwatch is a high-quality, fashionable timepiece that’s available for a budget-friendly price. Its elegant, timeless, and stylish design makes it ideal for wearing on any occasion, and it features a high-quality display and a set of activity and health monitoring sensors to keep you updated with your workout progress and daily fitness goals.This smartwatch has an impressive multi-day battery with several modes you can utilize to extend its life before requiring a recharge. It’s compatible with both Apple and Android devices, but Android users can take advantage of this smartwatch’s compatibility with Amazon’s Alexa assistant for even more convenient use.
- Available in several fashionable designs
- Takes 1 hour to fast-charge to 80%
- Compatible with iOS and Android devices
- Impressive processing speeds
- Doesn’t include a blood oxygenation level sensor
People Also Asked
Is it safe to wear a smartwatch?
Yes. The CDC regulates wearable technology to keep EMF and RF radiation levels within acceptable limits.
Can you reply to text messages directly from a smartwatch?
Yes, you can take advantage of voice-to-text functions to dictate a reply or use built-in templates or the handwriting function to send a response directly from your smartwatch.
What precautions should I take while using a smartwatch?
The harmful effects of a smartwatch are largely related to the distractions they can cause while driving or doing anything that requires close attention. You should put your watch in Do Not Disturb mode before engaging in such activities that require a certain level of concentration.