The best smartwatches for 2023


Only a few years in the past, the case for getting a smartwatch was unclear. The market wasn’t as saturated as it’s at this time, and options have been extra restricted. In the present day, the wearable world is stuffed with varied high-quality choices, and some key gamers, just like the Apple Watch, Samsung Galaxy Watch and Fitbit Versa, have muscled their technique to the entrance of the pack with their sensible options. Chances are high, in the event you’re studying this information, you’ve most likely already determined that it’s time to improve no matter gadget’s in your wrist – be it an ordinary timepiece or an ageing smartwatch. No matter which class you fall into, the checklist of specs you’ll need to contemplate earlier than deciding which is the perfect smartwatch so that you can purchase is a protracted one, and we’ll allow you to make sense of it.

What to search for in a smartwatch

Google WearOS interface on a smartwatch.

Cherlynn Low


Apple Watches solely work with iPhones, whereas Put on OS gadgets play good with each iOS and Android telephones. Smartwatches made by Samsung, Garmin, Fitbit and others are additionally suitable with Android and iOS, however you’ll want to put in a companion app in your smartphone.

The smartwatch OS may also dictate the kind and variety of third-party apps you’ll have entry to. Many of those aren’t helpful, although, making this issue a reasonably minor one within the grand scheme of issues.


The very best smartwatches usually value between $300 and $400. In comparison with price range smartwatches, which value between $100 and $250, these pricier gadgets have superior working programs, communications, music and health options. In addition they usually embody perks like onboard GPS monitoring, music storage and NFC, which price range gadgets usually don’t.

Some corporations make specialised health watches: These can simply run north of $500, and we’d solely advocate them to critical athletes. Luxurious smartwatches from manufacturers like TAG Heuer and Hublot may also attain sky-high costs, however we wouldn’t endorse any of them. These gadgets can value greater than $1,000, and also you’re normally paying for little greater than a model identify and a few needlessly unique number of construct supplies.

Battery life

Battery life stays one in every of our greatest complaints about smartwatches, however there’s hope as of late. You possibly can count on two full days from Apple Watches and most Put on OS gadgets. Watches utilizing the Snapdragon Put on 3100 processor help prolonged battery modes that promise as much as 5 days of battery life on a cost — in the event you’re prepared to close off most options apart from, you understand, displaying the time. Snapdragon’s next-gen Put on 4100 and 4100+ processors have been introduced in 2020, however solely a handful of gadgets – a few of which aren’t even available yet – are utilizing them to this point. Different fashions can final 5 to seven days, however they normally have fewer options and lower-quality shows. In the meantime, some health watches can final weeks on a single cost.

A couple of smartwatches now help sooner charging, too. For instance, Apple guarantees the Collection 7 can go from zero to 80 % energy in solely 45 minutes, and get to full cost in 75 minutes. The OnePlus Watch is even speedier, powering up from zero to 43 % in simply 10 minutes. (Thoughts you that turned out to be one of many solely good issues about that machine.)


Any smartwatch value contemplating delivers name, textual content and app notifications to your wrist. Name and textual content alerts are self explanatory, but when these imply so much to you, contemplate a watch with LTE. They’re costlier than their WiFi-only counterparts, however mobile connectivity permits the smartwatch to take and obtain cellphone calls, and do the identical with textual content messages, with out your machine close by. So far as app alerts go, getting them delivered to your wrist will allow you to look right down to the watch face and see in the event you completely have to test your cellphone proper now. 

Health monitoring

Exercise monitoring is a giant cause why folks flip to smartwatches. An all-purpose timepiece ought to operate as a health tracker, logging your steps, energy and exercises, and most of at this time’s wearables have a coronary heart price monitor as properly.

Many smartwatches’ health options embody a built-in GPS, which is beneficial for monitoring distance for runs and bike rides. Swimmers will need one thing waterproof, and fortunately most all-purpose gadgets now can stand up to at the very least a dunk within the pool. Some smartwatches from corporations like Garmin are more fitness focused than others and have a tendency to supply extra superior options like heart-rate-variance monitoring, restoration time estimation, onboard maps and extra.

Well being monitoring on smartwatches has additionally seen advances through the years. Each Apple and Fitbit gadgets can estimate blood oxygen ranges and measure ECGs. However the extra reasonably priced the smartwatch, the much less doubtless it’s that it has these sorts of in-depth well being monitoring options; if amassing these sorts of wellness metrics is vital to you, you’ll must pay for the privilege.

Samsung Galaxy Watch Active



Your watch cannot solely observe your morning runs but additionally play music whilst you’re exercising. Many smartwatches allow you to save your music regionally, so you may join wi-fi earbuds through Bluetooth and hearken to tunes with out bringing your cellphone. People who don’t have onboard storage for music normally have on-watch music controls, so you may management playback with out whipping out your cellphone. And in case your watch has LTE, native saving isn’t required — you’ll have the ability to stream music straight from the watch to your paired earbuds.

All the time-on shows

Most flagship smartwatches at this time have some an always-on show – some have it on by default whereas others allow you to allow it through tweaked settings. This sensible characteristic means that you can look down at your watch to test the time, well being stats or some other data you’ve set it to point out on its watchface with out lifting your wrist. It will little doubt have an effect on your machine’s battery life, however fortunately most always-on modes dim the show’s brightness so it’s not operating at its peak unnecessarily. Cheaper gadgets gained’t have this characteristic; as a substitute, their touchscreens will mechanically flip off to preserve battery life and also you’ll must deliberately test your watch to activate the show once more.


Many smartwatches have NFC, letting you pay for issues with out your pockets utilizing contactless funds. After saving your credit score or debit card data, you may maintain your smartwatch as much as an NFC reader to pay for a cup of espresso in your manner dwelling from a run. Remember that completely different watches use completely different cost programs: Apple Watches use Apple Pay, Put on OS gadgets use Google Pay, Samsung gadgets use Samsung Pay and so forth.

Apple Pay is among the hottest NFC cost programs, with help for multiple banks and credit cards in 72 completely different nations, whereas Samsung and Google Pay work in fewer areas. It’s additionally vital to notice that each NFC cost help varies by machine as properly for each Samsung and Google’s programs.

Greatest general: Apple Watch

Greatest general
Apple Watch Series 8

Picture by Cherlynn Low / Engadget

Apple Watch Series 8

The Apple Watch has advanced into essentially the most strong smartwatch since its debut in 2015, and it’s the no-brainer decide for iPhone customers.

The Apple Watch has advanced into among the finest wearables in the marketplace since its debut in 2015. It’s the perfect smartwatch for iPhone customers, and we wouldn’t decide you for switching to an iPhone simply to have the ability to use an Apple Watch. The newest mannequin, Apple Watch Series 8, has strong fitness-tracking options that can fulfill the wants of rookies and critical athletes alike. It additionally detects in the event you’ve been in a automotive crash, can perform electrocardiogram (ECG) checks and measures blood oxygen ranges. Plus, this Apple smartwatch affords NFC, onboard music storage and plenty of helpful apps, customizable options and methods to reply to messages.

There aren’t a ton of variations between the Series 8 and the Collection 7 that got here earlier than it. The Watch design is essentially unchanged, and whereas the Collection 8 runs on a more moderen S8 SiP, it did not really feel dramatically sooner in our testing. It lasted just a little bit longer, and we have been impressed by the brand new low-power mode, which stored the watch going for an extra two hours after already being down to twenty % battery life.

The Collection 8 is the perfect Apple Look ahead to most individuals, however there are two different choices now on the reverse ends of the spectrum. The brand new Apple Watch Ultra might be overkill for most individuals, but it surely has a ton of additional options like additional waterproofing to trace diving, an much more correct GPS and the largest battery of any Apple Watch up to now. Apple designed it for essentially the most rugged amongst us, however in your common individual, it doubtless has extra options than they’d ever want.

The $250 Apple Watch SE, alternatively, is much less feature-rich than the Collection 8, however it’s going to most likely suffice for most individuals. We truly regard the Watch SE as the perfect smartwatch possibility for first-time patrons, or folks on stricter budgets. You’ll get all of the core Apple Watch options in addition to issues like fall and crash detection, noise monitoring and Emergency SOS, however you’ll must do with out extra superior {hardware} perks like an always-on show, a blood oxygen sensor, an ECG monitor and a pores and skin temperature sensor.

Buy Apple Watch Ultra at Amazon – $799
Buy Apple Watch SE at Amazon – $249

Greatest price range smartwatch: Fitbit Versa 2

Greatest price range smartwatch
Fitbit Versa 2

Picture by Cherlynn Low / Engadget

Fitbit Versa 2

Dropping $400 on a smartwatch isn’t possible for everybody, which is why we advocate the Fitbit Versa 2 as the perfect sub-$200 possibility.

Dropping $400 on a smartwatch isn’t possible for everybody, which is why we advocate the Fitbit Versa 2 as the perfect sub-$200 possibility. It’s our favourite price range watch as a result of it affords a bunch of options at an ideal value. You get all of those necessities: Fitbit’s strong exercise-tracking skills (together with auto-workout detection), sleep monitoring, water resistance, linked GPS, blood oxygen (SpO2) monitoring and a six-day battery life. It additionally helps Fitbit Pay utilizing NFC and it has built-in Amazon Alexa as a voice assistant.. Whereas the Versa 2 sometimes prices $150, we’ve seen it for as little as $100.

Greatest Android smartwatch: Samsung Galaxy Watch 5

Greatest Android smartwatch
Samsung Galaxy Watch 5

Picture by Cherlynn Low / Engadget

Samsung Galaxy Watch 5

Enhancements like a extra sturdy display and refined curvature might not sound thrilling, however they make Samsung’s Galaxy Watch 5 extra resilient and dependable.

Samsung might not have introduced many upgrades to the most recent model of its fashionable Galaxy Watch, however that does not imply the Watch 5 is not nonetheless the perfect smartwatch for Android customers. Enhancements like a extra sturdy touchscreen and refined curvature do not sound thrilling, however they make the Watch 5 extra resilient and dependable. Plus, the Galaxy Watch affords essentially the most complete health and well being monitoring, together with physique composition evaluation, on Put on OS, and the corporate added a sleep teaching characteristic this 12 months that’s meant to assist information you in the direction of higher relaxation.

Should you do not thoughts outsized watches, contemplate the Galaxy Watch 5 Pro. It is costlier at $450, however comes with a bigger 45mm titanium case, an additional sturdy touchscreen and a bigger battery. Although Samsung markets this Android smartwatch as an outdoor-oriented machine, you are higher off considering of it as a giant timepiece that lasts longer than the usual mannequin. It has all the identical smartwatch options because the 40mm and 44mm variations, besides it helps the GPX route format for exercises so you may get turn-by-turn instructions whilst you hike and bike.

All three watches are additionally waterproof to allow them to observe swims or survive a sudden storm, and final greater than a day (with out the All the time On Show enabled). In addition they run Put on OS 3.5, which is so just like Samsung’s earlier Tizen OS that longtime wearers will not want to fret about adjusting to a brand new system. Finally, the Galaxy Watch 5 sequence is a succesful, well-rounded set of smartwatches that can serve most Android customers properly.

Fashionable smartwatches: Fossil and extra

Michael Kors Access Gen 5e MKGO at CES 2021


Sure, there are nonetheless corporations on the market attempting to make “modern” smartwatches. Again when wearables have been novel and customarily ugly, manufacturers like Fossil, Michael Kors and Skagen discovered their area of interest in trendy smartwatches that took cues from analog timepieces. You even have the choice to choose up a “hybrid” smartwatch from corporations like Withings and Garmin – these gadgets appear to be commonplace wrist watches however incorporate some restricted performance like exercise monitoring and coronary heart price monitoring. They continue to be good choices in the event you want that look, however fortunately, wearables made by Apple, Samsung, Fitbit and others have gotten way more engaging over the previous few years.

Finally, the one factor you may’t change after you purchase a smartwatch is its case design. Should you’re not into the Apple Watch’s squared-off corners, all of Samsung’s smartwatches have spherical instances that look just a little extra like a standard watch. Most wearables are supplied in a selection of colours and you’ll pay additional for premium supplies like stainless-steel. When you determine on a case, your band choices are countless – there are dozens of first- and third-party watch straps obtainable for many main smartwatches, and for each bigger and smaller wrists, permitting you to vary up your look everytime you please.

Leave a reply