A classic watch design with modern smartwatch features
Hybrid smartwatches are a wonderful fusion of an analog watch design blended with current technology, giving them a unique feel. Fossil's latest smartwatch, the Gen 6 Wellness Edition Hybrid, attempts to marry old and new to carve out a piece of the smartwatch world dominated by watches like the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5.
Whoop is great for runners and swimmers, but if your workout regimen includes weightlifting, it's not worth the price
It doesn't need to be the start of January for you to work on new fitness goals. Although your local gym is currently raking in the profits, getting out of the house and pushing yourself harder than ever before doesn't require a New Year's Resolution. All it takes is a plan and a little bit of drive — and thankfully, modern fitness trackers are more than capable of delivering both.
Solid hardware, but this just isn't worth $200
The Amazfit GTS 4 is a strange device. At a retail price of $200, the tracker is positioned as an upper midrange option, competing not only against scores of trackers from market leaders like Fitbit, but also fully-fledged smartwatches. I really like some things about the GTS 4: it’s got an attractive (if familiar) design, and its display is lovely and vibrant. But in the ever more crowded fitness wearable space, that’s probably not enough to justify the GTS 4’s existence, let alone its price.
The Garmin Forerunner 255S Music is a smartwatch focused more on getting you fit and ready for whatever exercise goals you want to achieve
Garmin makes smartwatches for the most active crowd, and goal-oriented runners might find that the Forerunner 255S Music is the right tool to stay on track. This isn’t the kind of wearable you strap on for leisure or the most basic movements — it's built for training, and Garmin thinks demanding runners will feel empowered with every step.
This small and mighty fitness tracker nearly does it all
I love having endless stats about the mundane and fitness-filled moments of my daily life. Sometimes, they're just interesting; other times, they help me improve my fitness — or, at the very least, give me a data-driven way to feel better about the progress that I might not actually see, but what the little device anchored on my wrist has deduced. The Fitbit Luxe is the company's smallest wrist-anchored fitness tracker.
You don't have to be a marathon runner to benefit from Apple's chunky, flagship watch
It shouldn't come as a shock that most of us here at Android Police are using Android smartphones and rocking Wear OS watches. Even so, we like to keep an eye on what's happening across the industry — including in Apple country. To that end, we wanted to give Apple's newest, flashiest wearable a spin.
Cheap fitness bands have come a long way
These days, fitness trackers come in all shapes, sizes, and price ranges. All Android smartwatches support some fitness tracking features, but many dedicated fitness trackers are best paired with health and fitness apps. One of the most successful lineups is the Xiaomi Mi Band series, and this year the Smart Band 6 earned the crown of best affordable fitness tracker.
High-end styling with a price to match
I've never been entirely sure what I should expect out of the Pixel Watch. On the one hand, it's a first-generation product from a company that's never made a smartwatch before. Growing pains can be expected. But at the same time, that company is Google, the zillion-dollar behemoth behind Wear OS and Android on the whole, that's been building some of our favorite phones and smart speakers for years now.
This fitness tracker has no business costing $300 in 2022
Fitbit’s more feature-rich fitness trackers are in a weird spot right now. With Google’s Pixel Watch sporting Fitbit integration, the prospect of a high-end Fitbit wearable with more limited software is starting to feel a little dubious.
The Halo View is a budget fitness tracker that feels lightweight and performs like it until you tap into the resources waiting in the Halo app
With the Halo View, it seems Amazon literally wanted to show you what its fitness tracking can do. Considering the company's previous tracker, the Halo Band — a device without a screen like the Fitbit-style View — it's likely that the goal here was a more traditional tracker with a more affordable price.
When having every option ever is too much of a bad thing, not a good thing
Amazfit's GTR 4 could have been an incredible smartwatch, but its mind-numbing user interface and sloppy companion app make messing with this device a chore, and I can't emphasize this any stronger.
Maybe this pro should have stayed an amateur
Samsung attempted to appeal to a wide audience of potential buyers with last year’s Galaxy Watch 4 Classic. Whether you wanted a large watch strapped to your wrist or felt unwilling to let the rotating bezel die, there was something there for you. With the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro, Samsung is attempting to sway a much narrower market: fitness freaks. The sort of buyer who springs for a Garmin watch over the latest from Fossil or Mobvoi, who finds the best of Fitbit just a little too casual.
Charging speed and battery are slightly better on this already-solid watch, but it’s not enough for die-hards
The Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 was the culmination of years of dreams, desperate pleas, and corporate collaboration, as Google and Samsung finally came together to give us the amazing Android smartwatch that Android owners deserved. The Exynos chipset inside ran circles around the outdated Qualcomm chipsets of its competitors. It gave us Samsung’s refined hardware and software experience with the Google services and apps that we’d missed out on earlier Tizen-based Galaxy Watch models.
Xiaomi's best yet still has room to grow
Over the past few years, Android smartwatches have fallen into disrepair. There is some hope now that Samsung is on Wear OS again, but the only innovation so far is One UI on our wrists. We don’t know what the future holds for Wear OS 3.0, but Xiaomi’s new smartwatches are here now, offering similar hardware and fitness and health features without WearOS. Sure, watches like the Xiaomi Watch S1 and S1 Active lack Google Assistant, third-party apps, and any defined ecosystem, but they do offer the basics with incredible battery life for a very reasonable price. Starting at $199 for the S1 Active and $269 for the S1, these very well could make a great smartwatch for someone who values battery life and health tracking above all else.
Possibly the best of a mediocre field
When I heard Facebook announced smart glasses with cameras, I thought it was a joke. Why would Facebook, a company infamous for misusing data, release a pair of glasses with a camera? Nevertheless, Facebook worked with Ray-Ban and created the Rayban Stories, a pair of smart glasses with a built-in speaker and not one but two cameras. The Stories are good as far as smart glasses go... which isn't very far.
Get this if you want a notification buzzer that looks more premium than its price suggests
The Xiaomi Mi Fit Band 6 is among the best budget wearables, if you ask me. It offers an affordable path to get fitness tracking right on your wrist. But some people might prefer a device that’s more like a traditional smartwatch, and that’s where Xiaomi’s Redmi Watch 2 Lite comes in. It’s a square-ish wearable focused on fitness tracking and notification pushing, all in a package that doesn’t break the bank at roughly 60 bucks. You’ll have to get used to quite some compromises and trade-offs compared to all the best Wear OS watches out there, but if you don’t demand fancy features and the fastest performance, it might just be the perfect device for you.
The latest TicWatch justifies its existence, and Wear OS 3 might make it even better
Mobvoi has more competition in Wear OS this year, but it’s not changing its approach just yet. Incremental changes are the name of the game with the launch of the TicWatch Pro 3 Ultra GPS, though the continued lack of Wear OS 3.0 is a notable pain point. While Mobvoi's newest smartwatch is expected to receive an update to Wear OS 3.0 sometime in 2022, this certainly puts Mobvoi at a disadvantage compared to Samsung and its Galaxy Watch 4. Still, Mobvoi is a known name in the Wear arena for a reason, and that reason is that it continually releases capable smartwatches year after year at satisfactory price points.
It's not bad, but it can't compete
Launching a new Wear OS smartwatch at this time is a precarious position to be in. Google and Samsung are collaborating on the development of a much-needed update to the platform, and this has already borne some fruit with the newly released Watch4 family running an in-progress version of Wear OS 3. However, other smartwatch makers have been sidelined as Google confirmed they won’t have updates to the new version for the better part of a year. Enter the Fossil Gen 6, a solid and well-made iteration of the product line, but also an underdog held back by the stigma of launching with Wear OS 2.
Daily Readiness doesn't tell you anything you don't already know
Wearables have yet to define themselves as essential gadgets the way smartphones and laptops have, leaving them in a tricky spot. Smartwatches can handle a lot of basic tasks — quick replies, timers and alarms, navigation — but they get expensive quickly, and unless you're willing to pay for a separate data plan, you'll need to keep your phone around. On the other hand, even the best fitness trackers are typically cheaper, undercutting prices on smartwatches while handling many of the same jobs.
Great battery life isn't enough to save this one
The smartwatch industry has largely reached equilibrium. The Apple Watch and Galaxy Watch respectively make up more than half the market share, which means that any competitor is going to have a hard time carving out a niche. Still, the Amazfit GTR3 does its best, particularly for the price, offering almost everything you’d want from a smartwatch for a lower price.