The smart watch is the mother of all smartphone accessories. It can do just about everything: beam important notifications straight to your wrist, run native apps, enabling you to search the internet with your voice, tracking your exercise routines over GPS, and let you check-out at the grocery store without reaching for your wallet. Obviously, it can tell the time, too.
Having the option of so many choices, picking the best smart watch is more difficult than ever. That’s why we created the Top 10 Smart Watch list for you. We have all the data you’ve been looking for, to help you choose from our smart watch review list, so you can enjoy your “smarter” life.
We’ve selected our top-rated models to help you choose from the best. It’s also important to know specifically what you are looking for, so keep the following advice in mind, when shopping around.
Before buying any smart watch, you should consider what type of mobile phone you use. Just as a smartphone runs on iOS or Android, or a computer runs Windows or OS X, different smart watches are powered by different operating systems. Outside of a few exceptions, almost all smart watches need to be paired with a smartphone to function fully.
As a result, if you’re an Android user, you should steer clear of the Apple Watch. Likewise, if you have an iPhone you’ll need to make sure the smart watch you’re considering runs on software that’s compatible with Apple’s iOS, because Apple’s watch iOS, is only compatible with the iPhone.
If you’re buying a smart watch that runs proprietary software, like Samsung Tizen or Pebble OS, you’ll also want to check which apps will run on it, as not all of them have mainstream third-party support.
Here we came again to the question “what you want in a smart watch?”. If you want to use your smart watch to answer emails, or book calendar appointments, you’ll have to pay a bit more, and invest in a unit that has either voice command or a touchscreen functionality.
At the moment there are two types of smart watch available: those with a colourful touchscreen like would find on your phone, and those which combine a regular analogue watch, with smart features that are called “half-smart watches”. The latter, we classify as a semi-smart device, and normally it gives you information on a small LCD screen, LED’s, or even as smaller hands on the watch face.
The best smart watches allow you to remove the original band and swap it with another choice of band. It may be made of stainless steel, silicone or leather. However, most bands are sold separately. They may come also on different colors. These extra band options are usually accompanied by an additional cost.
Today, the best smart watches come with two charge options: the wireless charger and a standard micro USB cable.
While we all know what a USB is, let’s explore the meaning of a wireless charger. Wireless charging occurs through a magnetic field, generated by the charger that surrounds both the charger and the device, enabling the transfer of power. You don’t need a physical connection between the device and its charger, but the two do need to be very close in location, no more than five centimeters apart, including the thickness of the device case. In most cases, you can simply rest your smart watch on the charging pad.
The main benefit of wireless charging, is the lack of needing power cords. No more accidentally pulling the power cord out along with your phone, or fumbling to disconnect your phone from the charger to take a call. There’s less wear and tear on your device from the absent and frequent plugging and unplugging.
The Bluetooth capability is used to wirelessly connect your smart watch to your smartphone. Bluetooth 4.1 is the newest, most common profile. But, you can still find other types, like the 4.0. However, 4.1 is power-efficient and can keep your phone connected to your watch for long periods of time.
All of the top smart watches pair Bluetooth with an iOS, and/or Android mobile devices to receive notifications of incoming calls and messages and other information from the mobile device. Don’t forget that almost all smart watches rely on your smartphone to function. They piggyback off your phone’s data connection, and connect via Bluetooth.
What is the difference between a smart watch and a “dumb” watch? Lots of things, but as smartphones have taught us, apps might be the most important things to consider.
Smart watches, like smartphones, can also run apps, using your smartphone, or run them right on the watch. You can run a lot of different apps on your smart watch such as health and fitness apps, navigation apps, control function apps for music or the camera, and many more. Because most smart watches have open software platforms, developers are coming up with new and innovative apps, that can increase the functionality of the devices. Just as in the case of a smartphone, app availability is a good way to determine which product to get, so make sure to check out the app selection for each watch, before buying it.
If you are not going to take off your smart watch, and want it to be a part of your everyday life, you should pay attention to the water resistance levels. You are only able to swim or shower, wearing a few, select brands. The International Electrotechnical Commission classifies the degrees of protection in smart watches against water and dust.
Most smart watches are only splash-resistant, and are not fully waterproof. New models that are totally waterproof are just now coming on the market, but beware, they are usually more expensive.
“Heart rate monitor” is a system made of sensors that measure and record the user’s heart rate. Periodically, it will check your pulse covertly, without being prompted, and without a need for you to physically interact with the watch. This can be a benefit for those who want to use their smart watch during their workouts, to track their fitness level, or those who have heart conditions that require 24 hour monitoring. However, the heart rate monitors are often very poor, unreliable or inaccurate.
Before buying a smart watch, you should determine how you wish to use it. Fitness fans will want to look for a device with a heart rate monitor and a built-in GPS.
Unless you want a gadget on both of your wrists, you’ll want a smart watch that can do double-duty as a fitness tracker, or any other wearable device that you were thinking about getting. Most smart watches are capable of tracking basic activity, like steps, but you need to pay close attention to any additional features. Top rated brands have the built-in heart rate sensors and other appealing functions. Examine the smart watch closely and choose a watch that tracks the activities you want to monitor.
Some smart watches have built-in compasses to help you maintain a sense of direction. This can be a helpful feature so you are constantly aware of your bearings, especially if you’re in an unfamiliar area. Mostly smart watches have a built-in GPS chip, that can be used to help you navigate or measure distance and speeds while traveling. Currently, the GPS features can drain significant battery life.
We should mention, that most smart watches do not have a built-in GPS chip, so if you want to map out runs, you still need to use your phone.
The smart watch phenomenon began in earnest in 2015, but now it’s in full swing. Basically, smart watches are wearable-technology devices, that maintain a relatively consistent wireless connection to your mobile device, usually a smartphone, and can receive notifications of incoming calls, texts, instant messages, social network updates, and more. There is now a number of attractive smart watches from tech companies and fashion brands, alike.
Whether you’re a business person, or you would just like to have a smart watch for their wearable technology, there is a smart watch on this list for you. Designers have also created many styles from classic to modern, to satisfy every consumer. These days, there is another way to make your current watch smart, (or your smart watch even smarter), with the “smart straps”.
So, to lessen your understandable confusion about smart watches, we are providing, additional, but not less important, information to assist you with purchasing the best device.
One of the most important things you’ll want to consider when buying a smart watch is its compatibility.
Many of the devices that are available use Android Wear, which is Google’s operating system designed for wearables; the latest Android Wear update adds support for iOS, but these are still very much Android-centric devices.
The Apple Watch, as you’d expect, connects strictly to iOS-powered devices, so it’s compatible only with the iPhone. Other watches, like the Pebble family, work with both Android and iOS, and are an emerging option that is gaining notoriety. Remember that it is vital to choose a watch that’s compatible with the mobile phone you use, otherwise, it won’t work.
Battery life is one of the biggest apprehensions consumers have about smart watches. Even the most expensive smart watch, is unable to last more than one or two days off of a single charge. The devices also generally use proprietary charging docks, which add further insult to injury, meaning that the charger has to match your cellphone and smart watch.
As a result, when buying a smart watch you should keep in mind that you’ll likely have to add yet another item to the list of devices you regularly have to charge.
For people who like to wear their watches 24 hours a day, except for water activities, may find this frustrating. Smart watches with full-color, smartphone-like displays, like the Apple Watch and Android Wear watch, only last for about a day on a single charge. Like your phone, you’re going to want to set them on a charger every night, before you go to bed.
Most of the watches that fall into this category, feature screens that turn off after just a few seconds. In order to check the time, you either need trigger the display with a physical button, or a gesture like holding it up to your face.
It’s the most important thing. Remember, your smart watch will become the part of your life. That’s why usability is very important. Every device is based on the quality of its interface and how well it performs its interactive features, such as navigating menus, launching applications and pairing the watch to your smartphone.
There’s one problem, which we call the “one-handed usability” of a smart watch. When it’s attached to your wrist, just behind your hand, that means whatever hand it’s attached to, is basically not going to be usable for interacting with the device. You’ll have to use your other hand, along with your eyes, and then that means your full attention is on the watch.
This action differs from a regular watch, such as when you wish to check the time, you can just turn your wrist and glance at it. With a smart watch, you need both hands, raised and in use, to see the time. The screen normally remains dark, until you do something to activate it, physically.
Remember, that you will wear smart watch in real-world scenarios, such as at the movie theater, to a concert, while running, on a hike, playing tennis, all sorts of places. The obvious goal of smart watches is to make your day easier but it should also feel comfortable to wear.
So, before choosing one, think carefully about the comfort level, and if you have the option, try it on, before purchasing it. Remember, you can get alternate watch bands for some brands, and that may change the comfort level, positively or negatively.
Though it’s exciting to purchase one as a gift for someone, it’s best for the user to choose the one that fits their needs and is comfortable. If you know the gift receiver has a particular model in mind, that would be the one to buy.
Unfortunately, very few smart watches come in different face sizes. Some of them look very large on small wrists, especially women’s or a teenager’s wrist. Most smart watches appear more masculine, and feature a thick strap and a large face. Luckily, these days, more and more manufacturers are creating smart watches that cater to women. This doesn’t just influence size, but the overall look of the smart watch.
The size of the display, or face, of the smart watch is measured diagonally, in inches. Some manufacturers sell two different-sized screens to appeal to people who prefer smaller, lighter watches, or one with a larger screen, instead. A smart watch with a larger display typically has a better picture, since they are higher in resolution than the smaller screen versions. It all comes down to the matter of personal preference.
The band refers to the material used in making the watch band, or strap. The models with silicone straps, help to keep the cost of the smart watch down. If you want to purchase a separate leather, or stainless steel band, there will most likely be an additional cost.
Make sure your smart watch has the feature of a Swappable Band, which we mentioned earlier. This makes switching watch bands much easier than those models that don’t have this feature.
The smart watch’s internal specifications tend to differ, from manufacturer to manufacturer. When it comes to smart watch’s internal components, bigger numbers are typically better. Most have RAM of around 512MB, and provide you with 4GB, of storage space for apps and music. Since the size of the smart watch can only handle a certain amount of RAM and storage space, carefully determine what kinds of apps or information you wish to store on your smart watch. Other applications that are not needed to be accessed on your wrist, are best left stored on your tablet or computer.
The processors are basically the brains of the watch, typically have a speed of at least 1.0 GHz; the faster the speed, the more the watch can handle. The type of processor used in the smart watch and its speed, is disclosed by the manufacturer, on the packaging and occasionally, in its advertisement. This speed reflects the overall performance, of the smart watch. The faster the processor’s speed, the faster the watch functions fully, in accessing data and apps. As smart watches are so new, most have similar speeds to one another, but that may change in the future.
Keep in mind that the faster the speed, the more functions the watch can handle, with more usability.
The total Reviews Bee rating sums up the overall picture of every product. Reviews Bee works tirelessly to ensure that we are providing the best product recommendations to you and your family. In rating the various smart watches available, we strive to give you the best information possible.Our algorithm includes information from both expert and consumer resources. There is no need to spend hours on researches, because Reviews Bee instantly gives all researches and analysis for you and creates a Top list to save your time and money.
Reviews Bee collects consumer review information from popular retail websites including Amazon, eBay, BBB, Yelp, Consumer reports, etc. In addition, Reviews Bee utilizes reputable market niche websites, to include in the product ranking decision. Using the feedback of actual customers in coordination with expert evaluations enables us to provide each product with a score that takes into account all trustworthy information available on that item.
We came up with the popularity score for every smart watch provider while analyzing 21 expert sites that are trustworthy. Based on our detailed evaluation, each smart watch is assigned an expert popularity score based upon how many times each product is positively mentioned by experts in the industry.
By analyzing all the expert review sites our algorithm summed up the average ranking for every smart watch in their rankings and that is how we came up with the final score for each smart watch brand.
We managed to gather more than 8795 reviews from 86 reliable sources and our algorithm calculated the average score for each brand.
In order to understand how satisfied those consumers were, we analyzed the total number of reviews. We collected all the reviews and the number of stars people gave for each product. Based on these findings we came up with the average customer rating. This is how we managed to bring out the smart watch reviews through which you know how the consumer can rate the smart watch.
In order to make our results authentic, we don’t limit ourselves to just the positive rankings factors but we also take complaints from all over the web into consideration and figure out how many customers were complaining about the product.
Through this, we show both sides of the product whether it’s positive or negative in nature. This then makes it a negative factor in our algorithm. This as a result makes the best smart watches reviews. That is why smart watches reviews not only have positive comments mentioned but also the negatives as well.