Smartwatches help you monitor your health, wake you up in the morning, provide timely notification of calls and messages, and track your activity throughout the day. There are inexpensive devices and watches for the price of a good smartphone. Here’s which watch to look out for.
Apple Watch Series 7
The Apple Watch Series 7 is one of the best smartwatches on the market. But you can’t even do the initial setup without an iPhone after purchase – so tightly integrated are they with iOS. Also, if you have an Apple Watch on your hand, a MacBook, iPad or iPhone with the same Apple ID nearby can be unlocked without entering a password.
With the Apple Watch 7 you can answer incoming calls and messages, open maps, view photos from your smartphone, control music and even the camera. Alerts are correctly delivered from most messengers, but for Whatsapp, you will have to install a third-party application WatchChat on the phone.
There is no separate application store for the Apple Watch – the watch itself downloads adapted versions of what is installed on the connected phone. Of course, you cannot gamble at Bob Casino NZ via your smartwatches. But many popular apps and most services related to sports and healthy lifestyles have such versions.
Apple Watch 7 has a huge number of functions for health and workout monitoring. The watch counts steps, tracks heart rate, and blood oxygen saturation and accurately enough performs ECG. A 20-second timer automatically starts when you wash your hands, and branded activity rings periodically remind you to get up and stretch.
There are several dozen programs on the workout tracking list, including rowing, climbing and Pilates. Separately, the Apple Fitness+ subscription service is available – a trainer is shown on your MacBook, iPhone, or TV with Apple TV connected, and the watch monitors your body condition and records activity.
The Apple Watch 7 screen is noticeably larger than in previous generations, although the body has not increased much. The OLED matrix with a huge brightness margin up to 1000 nits does not fade even in bright sunlight, colours are lush, and the image is perfectly clear thanks to the pixel density of 326 ppi.
There is an always-on display mode – when you aren’t looking at the clock, the screen does not turn off at all, but goes into the power-saving mode with reduced brightness. This feature increases power consumption, but with it, you don’t have to lift your wrist or touch the screen to see the time.
Attachment straps aren’t standard, they do not fit the watches of other companies. But the choice of branded and third-party accessories is large – the Watch 7 fits straps from all previous generations of Apple watches.
The only comment to the Apple Watch 7 is a small battery life. With frequent notifications, always-on screen and regular health monitoring, the watch completely runs down in one and a half to two days. By modern standards, this isn’t enough.
Samsung Galaxy Watch 4
The Galaxy Watch 4 runs on Google’s Wear OS and is equally compatible with any Android device. They do not work with iOS devices at all.
The case is metal, and you can swim in the watch. The dial screen is covered by tempered glass with a good oleophobic coating. In terms of brightness and clarity Galaxy Watch 4 doesn’t lag behind Apple. Because of the round shape, the Samsung watch looks more like an ordinary watch, but there is less space for notification text than on the rectangular Apple Watch.
The touch screen and two buttons – “Home” and “Back” – are responsible for control. There is a mode of increased sensitivity of the screen, to recognize the touch in gloves in winter.
All apps are downloaded directly from Play Market – you can install Todoist and YouTube Music, applications for notes, and more. “Maps” works independently, without a smartphone. The watch allows you to receive incoming calls to communicate on the go or while driving – there is a microphone and speaker. You can also answer messages without taking your smartphone out of your pocket.
Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 can measure ECG, pulse, blood oxygen level and blood pressure, as well as monitor sleep quality. It can even roughly measure the percentage of body fat. The watch counts steps and calories burned, and there are many programs to choose from to track athletic activities like running, swimming, and biking.
The watch’s weak point is its battery life. With active use, the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 has 20-25% battery life left by evening, so it needs to be charged every day. It is possible to disable some sensors and services to get up to two days of work, but then you will have to activate them manually every time during training.
The strap is removable, standard width of 20 mm – it can easily be changed to any for a regular watch. It comes with a nice silicone strap.
Despite the weak battery, the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 is one of the most interesting smartwatches on the market. It works quickly, supports many applications, can measure ECG and monitor many health indicators.
Huawei Watch 3 Pro
Huawei Watch 3 Pro is the opposite of the Samsung smartwatches. The top model of Huawei relies on premium materials, classic rotary wheels and a good battery. At the same time, the watch has fewer functions.
The gadget works not only with Huawei but also with any Android smartphone. To do this, you will need to install the Huawei “Health” app and create a Huawei account. You can also use it with Apple, but with limitations: you cannot control the music on your smartphone or answer messages.
The case is made of titanium and ceramic, the screen is protected by sapphire glass. Claims water resistance to 5 atmospheres – you can swim in the pool and the sea with them, but it is not recommended to dive. The set includes a leather strap with a type attachment.
The screen of the Huawei Watch 3 Pro is large and clear: 1.43 inches with a pixel density of 326 ppi. It’s the most massive watch in the selection, nearly 20 percent heavier than the largest Galaxy Watch 4 Classic and 40 percent heavier than the Apple Watch 7 45mm. Even on a man’s wrist, it can look bulky.
The gadget supports eSIM to make calls, track routes and download music from streaming services without a smartphone. However, there are very few third-party applications for Huawei watches, and music can only be listened to from the branded Huawei Music.
The watch runs on HarmonyOS from Huawei. Applications are downloaded from a separate section of the AppGallery, but there is little useful software in it. We will have to be content with what is available: weather, alarm clock, maps, music, compass, and so on are already pre-installed. The watch doesn’t have such an abundance of activity, sleep and habit trackers as Apple and Google have.
Huawei Watch 3 Pro counts heart rate, measures blood oxygen levels and skin temperature, and tracks jogging routes. The watch can automatically recognize several basic workout types, and more than 100 programs from cycling to triathlon are available for manual selection.
A big advantage of the Watch 3 Pro is its excellent battery life. You need to take out the charger about once a week.
Amazfit GTR 3 Pro
The Amazfit GTR 3 Pro is a good mid-range smartwatches. It runs on its own ZeppOS and is almost devoid of useful third-party software, but it’s about equally compatible with smartphones from any manufacturer.
The watch is thin and weighs only 32 grams, but it’s large. The screen diagonal is the largest in the selection, 1.45 inches, and the brightness, clarity and color rendering are not inferior to the flagship devices.
The GTR 3 Pro will be a good companion for sports fans. They measure stress levels and heart rate, blood oxygen, count steps, track sleep phases. The number of workouts is huge: 150 options are available, including cybersports. Training in the pool is also possible, the watch is protected against fresh and saltwater.
The Amazfit GTR 3 Pro needs to be recharged every eight to nine days if you turn off the constant heart rate monitoring and the “eternal” display. With the latter, the battery life is reduced to four days, which is also good.
The included silicone strap looks interesting, but the hand under it sweats. It’s worth buying a pair of alternative straps – here is a standard lever mount, it’s easy to find a replacement.
Amazfit has a more closed OS and lack of NFC for contactless payment. However, now in Russia contactless payment and so does not work on most watches.
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