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Best smartwatch 2022: Top picks for every budget

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Smartwatches are more than just letting you know when you get a text or phone call. It can be used as a phone or a fitness tracker, and even as a digital wallet.

These smartwatches can save your life with health features. The best smartwatches that we tested could detect high heart rates and connect you to emergency services in case of a fall. Some models also offer an electrocardiogram (ECG), and blood oxygen readings. Both the former can detect signs of atrial fibrillation and the latter is an indicator of respiratory health.

The best smartwatches can do these things better than other models. There are many apps that you can download and batteries that can last for days. Others can charge up in less than a day. Some can even last for a week. There’s also style: Smartwatches that are best for you can be personalized, from the straps to the faces, to make them more personal.

You can see all the top smartwatches here, as well our smartwatch buying guides to get more tips and tricks on choosing the right wearable. Also, check out our roundup of the most affordable smartwatches , if you are looking for something more affordable.

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Which smartwatch is best?

We tested dozens of smartwatches and our top choice is the Apple Watch Series 7 (from $399). It builds on years worth of communication upgrades and features, but also has a brighter screen, thinner borders, and faster charging. There are only a few rumors of the Apple Watch8 and WatchOS 9. For now, we recommend the Series 7.

While the Apple Watch 3 ($199), remains a great value, the Apple Watch SE ($279) offers a better choice. Although the SE is a hybrid model without high-end health features or an always-on display it still offers fall detection, compass and GPS. The best Apple Watch deals often make them available at a discount.

Samsung’s Galaxy Watch 4 (from $249 to $349) is the best Apple Watch competitor. In fact, it’s the most useful smartwatch for Android. There are two options, with one featuring the popular rotating bezel. This smartwatch comes with body composition analysis and the latest unified Goole Wear OS software.

Fitbit Sense (329) is the best smartwatch. It gives you a holistic view of your body and not just asking you to take readings or tests.

In the near future, a Google Pixel Watch could also be available. Here are our top picks for smartwatches that you can purchase now.

These are the best smartwatches available today

1. Apple Watch Series 7

The top smartwatch overall

SPECIFICATIONS

Sizes: 41mm, 45mm

Battery Life (Rated: 18 Hours)

GPS: Yes

Swim-Proof: Yes

Yes, Heart Rate Monitor

Optional LTE

Mobile Payments: Apple Pay

Compatibility with iOS

REASONS to BUY

+Larger display+Brighter Always-On Mode+QWERTY Keyboard+Comes With USB-C Magnetic Charge

RAISONS TO GET AWAY

-Also, only 18-hour battery life

The best Apple Watch is the Apple Watch 7. Although it isn’t a significant upgrade to the Apple Watch6 in terms features, it has a larger display in the new Apple Watch7 sizes. The Apple Watch is now available in 41mm and 45mm sizes, which complements the large screen. The 7th-generation Apple also gets exclusive watch faces and a full QWERTY keyboard.

We would prefer the Apple Watch to have a longer battery life of 18 hours, but the Series 7 is more efficient at charging. You can fully charge it in less than an hour. This allows it to spend less time connected to the USB-C to Magnetic cord, and is more mobile. This smartwatch is perfect for exercising, answering phone calls, and using the best Apple Watch Apps. You will need an iPhone.

2. Samsung Galaxy Watch 4

The best Android smartwatch

SPECIFICATIONS

Sizes: 40mm, 42mm, 44mm, 46mm

Battery Life (Rated: 40 Hours)

GPS: Yes

Swim-Proof: Yes

LTE: Optional

Mobile Payments: Samsung Pay

REASONS to BUY

+Slim design, fun watch faces+Improved wear OS software+Body composition analysis

RAISONS TO GET AWAY

-Inconsistent battery lifespan

We rank the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 second among the top smartwatches. It’s also the best Samsung watch. Samsung has dropped the “Active” branding in favor of a more sporty-looking Galaxy Watch 4 (starting from $249.99) and a “Classic” version (starting from $349.99).

The Galaxy Watch 4 has a 3-in-1 health sensor that measures heart rate, takes ECGs, and determines body composition. It’s appealing Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 Wear OS has but it pays homage to Tizen making it an ideal accessory for the top Samsung phones. You should note that some features are only available to Samsung users. This means that not everyone will be able to benefit from the Galaxy Watch 4.

The Galaxy Watch 4’s biggest drawback is its inconsistent battery life. However, as long as you are willing to charge it daily, you will still be able to benefit from the on-board GPS, excellent sleep tracking, and an always-on display.

3. Fitbit Sense

The best Fitbit smartwatch

SPECIFICATIONS

Sizes: 40mm

Battery Life (Rated: 6 Days)

GPS: Yes

Swim-Proof: Yes

Yes, Heart Rate Monitor

LTE: No

Mobile Payments: Optional, Fitbit Pay

Compatibility: iOS, Android

REASONS to BUY

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

RAISONS TO GET AWAY

Spotify Storage is not available

The Fitbit Sense smartwatch is the 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 on-board GPS, a native apps store, Alexa, and many other features. Fitbit is no longer a brand that tracks our steps. Fitbit devices such as the Fitbit Sense are able to show us what it means for our health. For potential savings on the Sense, make sure you check out the best Fitbit deals.

4. Apple Watch SE

The Apple Watch, mid-range

SPECIFICATIONS

Sizes: 40mm, 44mm

Battery Life (Rated: 18 Hours)

GPS: Yes

Swim-Proof: Yes

Yes, Heart Rate Monitor

LTE: Optional

Mobile Payments: Apple Pay

Compatibility with iOS

REASONS to BUY

+Classic design+Huge app library+Large screen

RAISONS TO GET AWAY

-No always-on display-No ECG

The Apple Watch SE is a combination of the Apple Watch Series 5 (which was discontinued in the meantime) and the Apple Watch Series 3 Although the Series 6 features are missing from this smartwatch, it still has many of the same features as the Series 6. The smartwatch is $279 and stands out due to its speed and safety features. The smartwatch also has an LTE option which makes it a great choice for anyone who wants to try Family Setup.

The Apple Watch 7 and the Apple Watch SE will determine if you’d like to spend $120 more for a larger display, an ECG monitor, and a brighter display. The SE is an excellent option for iPhone users if these tools are not important to you.

5. Garmin Venu 2 Plus

The best smartwatch for fitness tracking

SPECIFICATIONS

Sizes: 43mm

Battery Life (Rated: 10 Days)

GPS: Yes

Swim-Proof: Yes

Yes, Heart Rate Monitor

LTE: No

Mobile Payments: Garmin Pay

Compatibility: iOS, Android

REASONS to BUY

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

RAISONS TO GET AWAY

-There are not enough third-party apps

Garmin Venu 2 is already a great fitness-tracking smartwatch. It’s one of the most stylish Garmin watches and a great workout companion. The Garmin Venu2 Plus, priced at $449, offers voice assistants and on-wrist calling. The Venu 2 Plus retains Garmin’s reputation of accurate GPS and thorough fitness tracking, but is now more appealing to those who want their smartwatch as an extension of their smartphone.

Garmin is still missing a large third party app store and has remained adamant about LTE support. However, it is making a big step towards mastering smartwatches. The cherry on the cake is 10 days of battery-life.

6. Samsung Galaxy Watch 3

Android users will love this smartwatch

SPECIFICATIONS

Sizes: 41mm, 45mm

Battery Life (Rated: Up to 2 Days)

GPS: Yes

Swim-Proof: Yes

Yes, Heart Rate Monitor

LTE: Optional

Mobile Payments: Samsung Pay

Compatibility: iOS, Android

REASONS to BUY

+Slimmer design is better than the original+Physical rotating watch is back+FDA approved ECG readings

RAISONS TO GET AWAY

Battery life is shorter than the original

The Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 has been replaced by the Galaxy Watch 4 but it is still available for purchase. It remains one of our most fashionable smartwatches. You can get it in two sizes and in LTE versions. The rotating bezel of the Galaxy Watch 3 makes it easy to navigate the interface. You can also customize the display with thousands of watch faces.

The Galaxy Watch 3’s 2-day battery life is shorter than the original Samsung Galaxy Watch. However, it has more music storage, FDA-approved ECG tracking, and trip detection. Samsung Pay will allow you to make contactless payments and offer some great fitness features. You can see our guide to the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4, vs. Galaxy Watch 3, if you are unsure whether this model is right for you.

7 . Fitbit Versa 3

The best smartwatch to track your sleep under $250

SPECIFICATIONS

Sizes: One size

Battery Life (Rated: 6 Days)

GPS: Yes

Sleep tracking

Swim-Proof: Yes

Yes, Heart Rate Monitor

REASONS to BUY

+Good battery life+Customized training programs (subscription required)+Great sleep analysis

RAISONS TO GET AWAY

-Can only use one assistant at a time

Fitbit Versa 3 is the smartwatch that’s best for advanced sleep tracking. On-board GPS is the most notable feature of the Versa 3. The Versa 3 can now track your location outdoors even if you have left your phone at home. You will also appreciate a larger, curvier display.

Active Zone Minutes, a motivational feature for Versa 3, has been added to the Versa 3. Active Zone Minutes was introduced with the Charge 4, and is now a standard feature on Fitbit devices. It monitors your time in the cardio, fat burning, or peak heart-rate zones during exercise. You should aim to achieve the AHA’s 150 Active Zone minutes per week. You can also use your Fitbit Versa 3, to make phone calls or speak with voice assistants for questions, but you can only have one assistant enabled at a time. Are you confused between the Versa and Sense? See our Fitbit Sense vs. Fitbit Versa 3 face-off.

8. Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2

An Android-friendly fitness smartwatch

SPECIFICATIONS

Sizes: 40mm, 44mm

Battery Life (Rated: 24-60 Hours)

GPS: Yes

Swim-Proof: Yes

Yes, Heart Rate Monitor

LTE: Yes

Mobile Payments: Samsung Pay

Compatibility: Android and iOS (works best when used with Galaxy phones).

REASONS to BUY

+Offline Spotify storage+Gorgeous design+Works seamlessly with iOS and Android

RAISONS TO GET AWAY

You need to do some sleep-tracking work

The Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 and Galaxy Watch Active 2 faces-off shows that the Watch Active 2 is still a worthwhile purchase, especially when it’s on sale. The Samsung watch can be used with any smartphone. It features GPS, heart rate monitoring and the ability to enable LTE. It can also monitor your activity and sleep. It’s better at the first task than it is at the second.

The Galaxy Watch Active 2’s round design is both visually striking and appealing in terms of looks. It comes in a 40mm or 44mm size. This Galaxy Watch is powered by Samsung’s Tizen operating platform and includes Samsung Pay, Spotify onboard music, and heart health features. This includes an ECG feature that is normally reserved for higher-end models.

9. Apple Watch 3

The best smartwatch for iPhone users

SPECIFICATIONS

Sizes: 38mm, 42mm

Battery Life (Rated: 18-24 Hours)

GPS: Yes

Swim-Proof: Yes

Yes, Heart Rate Monitor

LTE: Optional

Mobile Payments: Apple Pay

Compatibility with iOS

REASONS to BUY

+Improved fitness-tracking+Faster Siri+Apple Music streaming (with LTE model)

RAISONS TO GET AWAY

-No always-on display-No fall detection

The Apple Watch Series 3 starts at $199 and is more affordable than the Series 6 or SE smartwatches. Although the size options are limited and the bezels are thinner, the Apple Watch Series 3 is still a great choice for the price.

You won’t have to sacrifice much for the Apple Watch 6, or the Apple WatchSE vs. the Apple Watch 3. The older version still includes a heart monitor, GPS, and 8GB storage. You also have offline support for Apple Music playlists. The Series 3 is water-resistant, so you can track your swims. Many of the most popular software features in the Apple Watch Series 6 are also available in this watch. To see all the advantages Apple’s smartwatch will offer over Fitbit’s, check out our Fitbit Vera 3 vs. Apple Watch3 face-off.

10. Fossil Gen5 LTE

The best Wear OS watch

SPECIFICATIONS

Sizes: 44mm

Battery Life (Rated: 18 Hours, but can be extended to last longer with an extended battery mode

GPS: Yes

Swim-Proof: Yes

Yes, Heart Rate Monitor

LTE: No

Mobile Payments: Google Pay

Compatibility: Android, iOS

REASONS to BUY

+Stylish, premium stainless-steel frame+More RAM makes a difference+Customizable battery modes

RAISONS TO GET AWAY

-Feels less than Samsung’s or Apple’s smartwatches. No offline Spotify playback. Sometimes, Wear OS stutters.

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The old Wear OS is not up to the mark against Samsung and Apple’s smartwatches. Fossil’s Gen 5 smartwatch, which has a sleek, sophisticated design, is the best option if you insist on a Wear OS device. This smartwatch is also worth a look because it has 1GB RAM and customizable battery modes.

The Galaxy Watch Active and Apple Watch Active will not provide the same fitness and heart-health features. The Gen 5’s Spotify app cannot store music offline, which is also a disadvantage. You might consider the Folio Gen 6, which will eventually run the new Wear Ossios. However, the updated model does not offer LTE.

How to choose the right smartwatch

The smartphone you have will limit your options when it comes to choosing the best smartwatch for you. An iPhone is required to get an Apple Watch. Wear OS watches can be used with Android and iPhones. However, the functionality is much lower when you don’t have an Android device. There are many differences between Apple Watch and Fitbit.

Samsung smartwatches are the most cross-functional, but Android phone owners will still get the best in terms of replying to notifications and being able to make and take phone calls.

When choosing a smartwatch, it is important to find one that fits comfortably on your wrist. Small wrists might find bigger smartwatches, with cases larger than 44mm, too bulky or cumbersome. You might also find our list of the top smartwatches for women useful if you require features such as cycle and pregnancy tracking.

You also want to choose a smartwatch that suits your personal style. The Apple Watch comes in a single shape but you can get it in other finishes. Samsung’s smartwatches are more versatile than the Wear OS watches. These watches are made by many companies, including Fossil and Skagen, Kate Spade. Moto, Tag Heuer and Diesel.

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Smartwatches are also useful for specific fitness goals. See our guides to the top running watches, and best GPS watches. You might also be suited to one of the top fitness trackers.

How to test the top smartwatches

Every new smartwatch is tested to determine its design and comfort. It should be stylish enough and comfortable enough that it can take you from your morning run to work to night out. Smartwatches can also serve as fitness trackers. We tested all its sensors, including heart rate, step count, GPS, and GPS, when applicable.

We install and test apps to determine if the app store can support smartwatch status. We test the connectivity and quality of calls on watches with LTE.

We also measure battery life by using everyday situations, such as exercising, using apps and receiving notifications, to ensure that you are able to get through the day without charging up.

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