Smart watches are a very mainstream tech nowadays, with top wrist wearable brands from the likes of Fitbit, Samsung, Apple, LG, Pebble, and Huawei helping to create an influx of smartwatches on the market.
We know that it is tougher than ever to choose the best smart watch for your needs, with both traditional tech powerhouses and fashion brands all making new models now and then. There are plenty of different smartwatches to choose from, and it can get overwhelming for you.
To help you out, our group of smart watch experts and enthusiasts decided to combine efforts to help narrow your choices so that you can have an easier time choosing among the best brands on the market. It took us close to five days to test and check dozens of smart watches from renowned and upcoming brands. Some proved to be great; others had complex features, others were overly pricey for their features, while others were, you know, below par. After our detailed analysis, we settled for these six best smartwatches.
Of course, there are many other things you should consider before making a purchase, and that is why we are here to help, with a detailed smart watch buyer’s guide!
A smart watch should fit your lifestyle and needs. One thing to remember is that smartwatches are similar to smartphones when it comes to choosing one. In that, a lot of the elements you should look at when purchasing a smart watch are quite similar to those you should look at when picking a new phone.
One of the main features of any smart watch is that they have the ability to synchronize display and data notifications received on a smartphone. The data is transmitted in real time, but for this to happen, the watch has to be within wireless range of the phone.
Besides, there are different types of notifications including alarm, email, calendar, social media, weather, text message, and more. Some models will only handle specific alerts or notifications. Essentially, you will need to ensure that the smartwatch you intend to buy is compatible with the notifications or alerts you want. If text messages are important to you and you need to read each message in full, then you will want to go for a smartwatch that will handle SMS and display full texts.
Ability To Be Repaired
When it comes to buying a watch, you need to know whether you can be able to fix it easily or not. For instance, can you easily replace its battery or wristbands? What about if the screen cracks, will it be expensive to purchase a replacement or repair? These are the things a lot of people overlook when buying smart gadgets.
If you are planning on wearing your smartwatch for a long time, then something is bound to get damaged. When it does, will you be able to fix it easily without costing you a lot? If no, you might as well be purchasing a new smart watch every year, and I’m sure you are not ready for this. That’s why you need to check the availability of spare parts for the smartwatch you intend to buy.
The battery life of a smart watch is an important consideration. Some smartwatches can last half a day while others can last for over a year or two. Power cycles largely depend on the features supported by a smartwatch, size of the internal battery as well as how often you use your watch.
That is why battery life is something you will want to consider when picking out a smartwatch. Are you looking for a watch that will last a full day until you get home? Then pick a smartwatch with lengthy battery life.
Smart watches, just like smartphones, have different display. Some of them have a full touchscreen with bright, attractive colors while others have simple white and black screen. Moreover, some watches feature display icons for most recent notifications while others display the full message associated with an alert. Make sure you check the display of the smart watch you intend to buy and understand what it can support. Does it handle notifications and alerts the way you would desire? Are you fine with viewing an icon and reading further details on your phone? Or would you rather read the entire notification content on your smartwatch?
You will be wearing your smart watch for extended periods, and there is a chance you may forget it’s in your hand. Some watches are splash-proof meaning they can handle a bit of water, but not much, while others can handle water depth of specific depth, meaning you can swim with them within their water resistance range they offer.
This may seem obvious to many, but a watch is going to compliment your style and fashion. Do you like the feel and look of your watch? Do you find it hideous on your wrist or does it have an aesthetic appeal?
Appearance is an important factor to consider since you will be wearing the watch a lot. Ensure that you like your preferred smart watch appearance before making a purchase.
There is more to smart watches than just display notifications. Some allow you to check in to a location with just a tap of a button. Others can play music on your watch while others can help you find your lost phone. You will find other with voice control features just like smartphones.
The main point here is that smart watches can feature a lot of functionality depending on the brand. Some are specifically designed to aid health and exercise tracking and features related functionalities. If you do not exercise or run often, you would probably be disappointed if you purchase a fitness smart watch. Look at what a smart watch has to offer and make sure it has features and functionality you will use.
While our buyer’s guide has listed important factors you should consider to ensure you buy the best smart watch for your needs, it not fully comprehensive. Don’t shy away from looking for other features and elements when buying a smart watch, especially if you have a specific model in mind.
Fitbit, a renowned brand in making fitness trackers, has stepped out of its comfort zone. This US Company wants to compete with the likes of Samsung and Apple smartwatches. The Fitbit Ionic Smartwatch is the first smart watch from this manufacturer and can take advantage of apps developed by 3rd parties.
Fitbit Ionic has dared to be quite different by opting to go with the square design. Some may still cling to the classical circular watch design because they are used to circular watches, but Fitbit’s square design exudes passé charm.
With a tapered underside, less sweat will be trapped under it when you are exercising. It also allows its sensors to remain in contact with your skin when you are on the move. This smart watch is comfortable to wear and has a long battery life that can last for 3-4 days.
The most noticeable feature of this smart watch is its display. With a sharp, vibrant, and bright display, you can view its icons even when the sun is shining brightly.
The Fitbit Ionic Smartwatch doesn’t support regular watch straps. Instead, it comes with a proprietary quick-release design. However, Fitbit offers small and large silicone straps that you can fit if you prefer wearing a watch with straps.
This watch is also easy to use. A button on its left allows you to go back on the screens while the top-right button gives you access to your fitness stats. The bottom-right button brings up coaching apps including running and swimming apps. Its display is touch sensitive, and thus you can swipe to scroll through the apps.
As with any other product, this smartwatch has several minor glitches. For instance, the desktop PC and mobile apps may be inclusive, but they are not intuitive. One of the units we tested struggled to detect the Wi-Fi it was on making music transfers quite hard. But we hope this problem is solved with current models.
This smart watch is water-resistant and withstands water up to 50m. You can track your swimming thanks to its inbuilt swimming app. You can wear it in the showers too. Besides step counting, this smart gadget also tracks your heart rate. The ionic has an SPO2 sensor that senses blood oxygen levels.
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We hope that Fitbit will take full advantage of SPO2 sensor so that it can track issues such as sleep apnea. Sporty individuals will also like the Ionic because it can be used without smartphone assistance. With GLONASS and GPS built in, one can track progress when running. It can pair with Bluetooth headphones and has a media player
- Its sleep tracking is unparalleled. This smart watch can tell you the duration you slept, and it takes this a step further by telling you the quality of your sleep based on results from its heart rate sensors
- Although it does not come with a host of apps, Ionic feature apps that really matters
- Its battery life is also hard to beat. Its manufacturers claim it can last for up to five days, but as per our tests, the battery lasted four-and-half days. However, this is something we never found in any of the five smart watches we have listed here
Pros of Fitbit Ionic Smartwatch
- It has a commendable battery life
- Features an in-built GPS
- Has a heart rate monitoring
- It is waterproof and can withstand water depth up to 50m
- It is a bit pricey than most models in its category
- Its OS can be a bit slow
For many years Samsung has been dominating the smartwatch industry with its Gear series of smartwatches for all the right reasons. By combining clever marketing strategies and amazing products, Samsung has won the hearts of many with their amazing smart watches. The Gear S3 is definitely a darling watch to many.
Right out of the box, you can tell that Gear S3 is a top model. Released earlier last year, the S3 focuses on everything that smart watch enthusiast finds appealing. Although it costs comparatively higher than most options on this list, its premium features makes it worth the money.
Unlike most smartwatches on the market that runs on Android Wear, Gear S3 runs on Tizen, patented Samsung OS. Although this OS is still something new, it is promising and easy to use. With this watch, you can save offline playlists onto its 4GB storage capacity. This feature will make your life easy because you will no longer rely on Wi-Fi to listen to music. Samsung Gear S3 features an animated display making it gorgeous when it’s turned on.
Another great thing about Gear S3 is that it comes with activity trackers of all sorts, and while several people might be skeptical because of the permissions it requires, we found it very helpful.
With a great, interactive interface combined with great features this smartwatch possess, makes Samsung Gear S3 one of the best model on the market.
However, for starters, this watch may look big on your wrists, but this depends on the size of your wrist. Another downside of this smartwatch is lack of proper apps. This is mainly because of Tizen OS that is still relatively new. If you are okay with these minor shortcomings, then we can attest that Samsung Gear S3 is definitely among the best smartwatches 2018.Want To View The Reviews Yourself, Click Here
- It has an always-on display and a rotatable steel bezel that allows you to access notifications and apps
- It allows one to tap or swipe credit card
- Has an inbuilt GPS that makes it easier for you to share your location
- Compatible with various Bluetooth capable smartphones using Android OS 4.4
- You can receive notifications for texts and calls directly from your watch
- Has an excellent build quality
- It is loaded with excellent features
- Has an amazing, always-on display
- Features an array of trackers and sensors
- There are not enough apps
- It might be too big for new users
Donning a watch from Apple in 2018 is a little bit a thing you’d fancy because of the latest jaw-dropping deals that company has launched. With a watchOS 4 update and a higher app count, this fantastic smartwatch series can be great especially if you need an iPhone-tied convenience device.
The Apple watch is still one of the best, bearing in mind that smart watches aren’t a game revolutionary like smartphones. That’s why I have mine ticking away on my wrist two years from its launch. The Apple watch features apps like Mail, Messenger, and every iPhone notification. Why would you stress yourself every time you’re not locating your phone, while this handy device can easily find it for you?
The version is the fastest available, and for those who need LTE support, it’s time to press the buy button. As mentioned earlier, the Apple Smart Watch comes with the watchOS 4 update which boosts the model by adding a watch face with Siri. The activity tracking has been enhanced as you can now sync music to your watch or even pay your friends through Apple Pay which comes with the watch.
The size of the gadget is right and doesn’t feel and look chunky to the average person. The 42 mm attractive watch has a 1.7 –inch OLED touchscreen with a resolution of 322 pixels per inch. The most interesting part of the screen is the Force Touch which eliminates more physical buttons. In terms of battery life, the smart watch can offer a longer service of up to 24 hours of moderate use. It also comes with Wi-Fi (802.11b/g/n) and Bluetooth 4.0.
But while the Apple Smart Watch can make calls, it cannot add new contacts. It just listens dictated texts and transfers them as audio messages. The good thing is it’s just simple as there isn’t an edit function. And while it is a good companion for people who need to track their fitness goals, the watch is not GPS-enabled.Want To View The Reviews Yourself, Click Here
- Has a 42 mm strap and a 1.7-inch OLED touchscreen.
- Has sufficient connectivity with Wi-Fi 4.0 and Bluetooth.
- Has a powerful battery that can last for about 18 hours
- Has watch0S 4 update
- Has an accelerometer, ambient light sensor, heart rate sensor, and gyroscope
- Has an attractive design
- It has a clever interface
- Superb OS update
- Relatively pricey
- Lacks GPS
While several companies are trying to make a name in the smartwatch industry, Pebble is making things simple and nice for people who prefer simplicity. Pebble Time Smartwatch is a simple and probably among the most affordable smartwatches in this list.
It comes with a steel strap or a rubber band strap for those who would want to have a choice. This smartwatch has an always-on reflective display that looks attractive, and you can view its icons under direct sunlight. It also comes with water resistance, allowing you to wear this watch even in the rain or in the showers.
It has a decent battery that can last for four days, but we never had the opportunity to test its duration since we changed this watch in between the days. However, it goes without saying that this battery is outstanding.
Pebble Time Smartwatch also features onboard storage that stores your favorite apps that are compatible with its OS.
Another interesting feature of this watch is that it can support watch faces built for both iOS and Android. This means you can customize your watch the way you prefer.
Among the downsides of this watch include apps looking unpolished and dim display especially under sunlight making it hard to read.
Overall, Pebble Time Smartwatch is an amazing option for people who are looking for an affordable smart watch that looks simple, packs lots of valuable features, and with long battery life.Want To View The Reviews Yourself, Click Here
- Has water resistant up to 30 meters
- Accepts voice notes thanks to its inbuilt microphone
- Features a sleep tracker, activity tracker, and Pebble Health app
- You get to see notification at a glance
- Has a simple design
- Decent battery life
- Water resistant
- Watch faces from iOS and Android work
- Plenty of watch faces and apps
- Has a dim display
- Features no touchscreen
- The fitness apps are not very efficient
Garmin, popularly known for their advanced GPS technology, has a new smartwatch on the market, the Fenix 3. It is one of the company’s top quality smartwatches. This smartwatch comes loaded with great features that make it a high-end smart watch. With a beautiful, bright display, you will find reading alerts and notification easier even in broad daylight.
Made of premium materials, this smart watch can take some beating and still hold up. It comes with a choice of metal band or rubber band.
This watch has decent battery life and can last for a couple of days. It has an impressive GPS tracker thanks to the company advanced GPS technology.
Garmin Fenix 3 is also water resistant and can withstand water up to a depth of 100m, making it the best in the market in terms of water resistance. It has its own OS, app store and this helps help it to keep its identity.
However, it lacks an activity tracker and doesn’t support on-watch maps. Overall, it is a quality smart watch that will serve you for many years.Want To View The Reviews Yourself, Click Here
- It is water resistant up to 100m
- Features a bright display
- Comes with a black silicon band giving it a luxurious look
- Has outdoor navigation features such as barometer, altimeter, 3-axis compass, and Tracbac feature
- Features wrist heart rate technology
- It is the best in class when it comes to battery life and water resistant
- Premium construction
- Has a great display
- Has an advanced GPS
- Loaded with premium features
- Lacks activity tracker
- Does not accommodate on-watch maps
It may sound awkward to call the Chinese company Mobvoi a household name, but the company has been making remarkable moves worthy of your attention. The company, which is founded by ex-Google employees, has been doing quite some interesting work for a starter. And now, it has launched its TicWatch S in this already near-full market. This watch is one of a kind having a strap aimed at active users as the GSP is located in the band for more accurate readings.
Are you in search of a sporty current Google-powered wearable that won’t cost you much? Keep reading.
The most notable feature of the TicWatch S is its circular 1.4 inch OLED display that sits within a brushed chrome-like bezel. On top of it, are bright numbers and dots that give it a sporty feel rather than a brand look.
The Bright green makes a good styling choice, and it feels so much interesting to own a watch that can change the watch face to suit your style. Very few smart watches beat this style. The strap is made of TPU which is a tremendously strong composite made from a combination of soft silicone plus hard plastic.
Better yet, the composite is breathable and comfortable on the hand. The strap looks amazing with the color as well as on the body itself. It fastens by means of a metal clasp whose role is to keep any surplus strap tidy. This stops it from getting caught just when you’re in the middle of a mid-run. It’s most comfortable if you can wear it in the ‘wrong’ position for heart rate tracking but wearing it on the upper still works okay.
The screen boasts a capacitive multi-touch display which has been made of a scratch resistant glass that works perfectly, making it a real beauty to look at. In our experience, there has been a revolution where smart watches have abandoned the ‘flat tire’ to display the left clack line towards the bottom of a round screen, but the TicWatch S uses the entire screen. It’s big enough to check calls, respond to message right in the middle of your couch.
As stated earlier, it has a 1.4-inch OLED having a resolution of 400 x 400 and hence giving it 287 dots per inch. This adds its clarity on the sizeable screen. What’s more, you can customize brightness, watch face, and the font size with limitless options that are available on the Google play store. The fact that it has the date, step count, battery life, weather, alarms and much more features, makes it a nice TicWatch to own. I found the battery life quite interesting as you can use it for up to two days. Obviously, if you’re a too much a heavy user of the GPS you may stretch it a bit, but it should be enough for a marathon.
However, there’s one omission that the watch lacks; NFC. This means there’s no Android Pay, but for a watch of the price, it has enough features that would keep you jovial.Want To View The Reviews Yourself, Click Here
- The screen is very clear
- You can customize brightness, font size and watch face
- The battery Life is great
- You can make calls and check messages
- Comes with 30-day money back guarantee and a 12-month warranty
- It is very affordable
- It’s pretty comfortable on the hand
- It lacks NFC and LTE
- It has none-changeable straps
Analyzing so many incredible smartwatches and narrowing down to the above list has been an absolute pleasure. Of course, it was not as smooth as we thought because we had a hard time determining the best of the best as most of them tied in many aspects, but after the hard work that went into analysis and testing all these amazing watches as well as reviewing them, we hope that you will find a suitable one among them.
Any of the above models is well worth every penny it cost, and we are sure you will truly love any of them. Pick any of them with confidence!