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Best GPS sports watches in 2022

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If you are serious about outdoor activities such as running, hiking, and climbing, it is worth investing in one of the top GPS sports watches. Not only can they help you keep track of your steps, calories, and other important information, but some also have safety features. Additional features such as altimeters and preloaded maps, advanced metrics, music storage, and more can be added at an additional cost.

Many of the top fitness trackers and best smartwatches include location tracking to log outdoor workouts. However, dedicated sports (also known as GPS watches) have more detailed data and can last longer on a single charge.

The majority of GPS watches for runners are designed for athletes. However, there are models that are specifically made for golfers, triathletes and endurance athletes. We’ve compiled a list of the best GPS watches for different categories to help you decide which one is right for you.

Which GPS watches are the best?

The Garmin Forerunner255 Music is our top pick after testing many models. The best Garmin watch for runners, but capable of tracking other outdoor activities, the Forerunner255 has advanced run-tracking metrics and solid battery life. It also offers onboard music storage. Spotify is supported by the Forerunner 255, which allows you to download playlists to your watch if you are a subscriber to the music service.

Fitbit also offers some excellent GPS watches. Both the Fitbit Sense 3 and Versa 3 have integrated GPS, voice assistant, and multi-sport tracking. The Sense features a skin temperature sensor, stress detection, an ECG monitor to detect atrial fibrillation, and a stress detector.

The Amazfit T-Rex 2 sports watch is a great budget option. It has a bright display and is very affordable. It is sleek and has a G-Shock appearance. It also meets all requirements for durability to withstand Jurassic Park.

These are the best GPS watches that you can purchase today

1. Garmin Forerunner 255 Music

The best sports watches overall

Specifications

Battery life in GPS Mode: 6 Hours (with music).

Water resistance: 165 feet

Bluetooth Yes

Notifications for Smartphones

Yes, Heart Rate Monitor

Battery Life in GPS Mode: 6.5 hours (with Music), 30 hours without Music

Sizes: 42mm and 46mm

Weight: 39g, 49g

Water resistance 5ATM

Music Storage: 500 Songs

Workout Recommendations

Sleep tracking

Notifications for Smartphones

Mobile Payments: Yes

+Lightweight+Easy reading and use during runs+Robust train metrics+Available at two sizes+Has an option for triathlon mode

Avoidable reasons

-No touchscreen-Lacks Garmin’s Training Readiness score

Garmin’s Forerunner 255 Music is a huge success. It offers advanced run-tracking capabilities, solid battery life, and offline Spotify support. This is an upgrade to the Garmin Garmin Forerunner245 which was our favorite sports watch. If you are looking for a bargain, this is the time to get the Garmin cheaper, which is currently on sale at many retailers.

During our testing, we were impressed that the Forerunner 255 allows you to choose between two sizes: 42mm and 46mm. The bright, full-color, transflective display on both models is the same. It’s easy to read even in direct sunlight. And the sharp 260×260 pixels (on larger Forerunner 255) make it an ideal companion for outdoor running.

The Forerunner 255 Music is almost as expensive as a new Apple Watch. However, it has superior battery life and in-depth GPS tracking that can last up to six hours. This makes it the best choice for serious runners. The onboard music storage is a great companion for long runs.

We were very impressed by the Garmin upgrades to the Forerunner255, which now includes triathlon and multisport modes, as well smartwatch features such as Garmin Pay.

2. Amazfit T-Rex 2

The best value in sports watches

Specifications

Compatible with: Android, iOS

Display: 1.3 inch AMOLED

Yes, heart rate

GPS: Yes

LTE: No

Battery Life: 24 Days

Water resistance up to 50 meters

Mobile Payments: No

+Unique GPS watch design+Excellent battery life

Avoidable reasons

-Bad haptics

The Amazfit T-Rex 2 sports watch is a great choice for those who want a big display, built-in GPS, compass, and enough durability certifications that it can withstand Jurassic Park. It’s less than a third the price of Garmin Fenix 7 or other GPS smartwatches and is therefore a more affordable option.

T-Rex 2 has a long battery life and sleep tracking, all wrapped in an impenetrable shell. The T-Rex 2 has all the sensors you need, and it’s a formidable beast. Plus, who wouldn’t love a device named after a dinosaur!

The second version of the Amazfit watch is slightly larger than the original T-Rex and has a longer battery life. It also features dual-band five satellite positioning. This makes it a better choice for adventurers.

3. Garmin Forerunner 55

The best sports watches value

Specifications

Battery Life in GPS Mode: 13 Hours

Water resistance: 50m

Bluetooth Yes

Smartphone Notifications

Yes, Heart Rate Monitor

Yes, heart rate monitor

GPS : Yes

Water resistance: 50 m

Display: 1.08 inch MIP

There is no music onboard

Mobile payments: No

Yes, sleep tracking

Battery life: 14 days/20 hrs with GPS

+PacePro recommended workouts +Bright screen +Easy-to-read stats +Battery Life

Avoidable reasons

-No onboard storage. -No interchangeable band. -Only available in a single case.

Garmin Forerunner 55 sports watches are affordable. This GPS watch tracks speed, distance, and pace and is affordable and accurate. It also has some of Garmin’s most technical features for a fraction the cost.

Garmin claims that a fully charged Forerunner55 can last for up to 2 weeks in Smartwatch mode or 20 hours in GPS mode. This is an increase in battery life than the predecessor. The Forerunner 55 is cool enough to be worn every day. It also, like the other Garmin watches, will provide you with sleep-tracking data when you wear it at night so that you can monitor how your recovery goes.

If you need a lot of features, this GPS watch is not for you. However, it’s the best option for someone who wants an easy-to-use device from a trusted manufacturer.

The Forerunner 55 is a more affordable option. It replaces the Forerunner 45 which was a great fitness tracker with many useful features.

4. Fitbit Sense

Best sports watch/smartwatch

Specifications

Battery Life in GPS Mode: 12 Hours

Water resistance: 165 feet

Yes, Bluetooth

Notifications for Smartphones

Yes, Heart Rate Monitor

+Attractive+Long battery life+Comprehensive fitness/health features

Avoidable reasons

-No Spotify storage

The Fitbit Sense smartwatch is top-of-the-line and comes with more advanced wellness and health features than the Versa. The FDA-approved ECG sensor, blood oxygen reading and electrodermal activity can be read by the Sense.

The Sense is one of the most popular Fitbits. It works with iOS and Android and has a native app store, Alexa, and many other features. It also features GPS to track your outdoor activities.

During testing, the Fitbit Sense lasted up to 12 hours if it was keeping an acute eye on your location and 6 days if it is in its standard smartwatch mode.

5. Garmin Venu 2 Plus

Garmin’s best smartwatch

Specifications

Yes, heart rate monitor

GPS : Yes

Display: 1.3 inch AMOLED

Yes, on-board music

Mobile payments: Yes

Sleep tracking

Battery life: 9 days/24 hrs with GPS

+Stunning AMOLED display+Reliable Garmin Coach+Call quality is higher than expected+ Fantastic battery life

Avoidable reasons

-Not enough third party apps could provide better recovery advice

Garmin watches don’t have to be reserved for elite athletes. The Venu 2 Plus smartwatch is stylish and comparable to the Apple Watch or Fitbit Versa 3. It’s also rugged enough to go on bike rides, strength training, and just plain fun with your kids. The Garmin Vivoactive 4 is a step above this model, with its AMOLED display and stainless steel bezel.

Garmin’s smartwatch features include tracking your workouts and notifications. There’s also a touchscreen that allows you to make payments via mobile devices. You can store up to 650 songs.

The Garmin’s on-wrist voice assistants and on-the-go calls make it easy to take along your phone on adventures. The Venu 2 Plus retains Garmin’s reputation of accurate GPS and fitness tracking, but is now more appealing to those who want their smartwatch as an extension of their smartphone.

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