You are currently viewing Best Smartwatches 2023 | Apple vs Samsung vs Garmin

Before you go out and spend hundreds of dollars on a smartwatch, make sure it has the features that fit your lifestyle.  Here are the best smartwatch options for iPhone and Android users.

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Apple Watch Ultra & Series 8


image of an Apple Watch Ultra & Apple Watch Series 8


  • Best-in-class heart rate sensor
  • LTE options for phone-free music streaming and calling
  • Huge selection of downloadable premium watch apps to increase the overall functionality
  • Built-in GPS
  • 1-2 Day battery life (Apple Watch Ultra)


  • Lousy 18-hour battery life (Apple Watch 8)
  • Expensive


Apple is back with another battery-hungry wearable, with minimal upgrades from the previous couple of series. Even though the Series 8 struggles to make it through a day of heavy usage, the quick charge feature has been a nice addition since the last series. Just don’t forget your charger.

The only substantial upgrades that are exclusive to the Series 8 are a slightly-improved processor, temperature sensor, and crash detection. Other than that, it’s almost identical to the Series 7.

Why you should choose the Apple Watch Ultra or Series 8: If you’ve read our reviews of any previous Apple Watch series then you know that even with the lousy battery life, there’s still a lot more to love than hate, especially with the Apple Watch Ultra.

Featuring the best-in-class heart rate sensor and medical-grade ECG app, it’s still the best wearable to track cardiovascular health. Additionally, the Apple Watch Utlra & Series 8 have great multi-sport tracking to go along with their advanced biometric tracking.

The bottom line is unless you’re a long-distance runner/biker/hiker, the Apple Watch Ultra & Series 8 are your best smartwatch option for iPhone users. With thousands of choices in replaceable bands and a huge app store, you can customize the wearable to almost any lifestyle. If you own an Apple Watch Series 5 or older, this is your best time to upgrade.

This is especially true if you’re thinking about the Ultra. The 1-2 day battery, beefed up Titanium chassis, dual-speaker, and extra bright display (2,000 NIT), it’s a lot more appealing to long-distance runners, bikers, and hikers. If you can get passed the price tag, there’s no better overall smartwatch than the Apple Watch Ultra.

Best Deals

Apple Watch Series 8

Apple Watch Ultra

Samsung Galaxy Watch5 & Watch5 Pro


Samsung Galaxy Watch5 Watch5 Pro


  • Great 2+ day battery life
  • Reasonable price
  • LTE options for phone-free music streaming and calling (Not Golf Editions)
  • On-Wrist 
  • Get up to $240 Off when trading in your current wearable at


  • Not compatible with iPhone
  • Much larger bezel area than Apple Watch Ultra & Series 8
  • ECG heart rate readings only work on Samsung phones


Instead of giving us a choice between a classic version and a sleek & sporty version, Samsung stuck with the sporty look. Now you have the choice between two sizes of a standard version and two sizes of the new Golf Edition. Plus, there’s now a Pro edition that offers even greater battery life.

Personally, I liked the look and function of the physical rotation bezel of the Galaxy Watch classic versions, but the Galaxy Watch 5 has a nice and responsive touch bezel that makes up for it.

With the major updates being the addition of fast charging, a sapphire crystal window, and a larger battery, there’s not a huge difference between this and the Galaxy Watch4.

Its heart rate sensor and on-wrist ECG readings rival the Apple Watch and Fitbit Sense. Plus, the Golf Editions rival Garmin’s family of Golf-tracking watches and come with far more smartwatch features like LTE calling/streaming, a huge app store, and far more integration with Samsung Galaxy phones.

The bottom line is that just like what the Apple Watch is to the iPhone, the Galaxy Watch is to Samsung Galaxy phones. Unless you’re a more advanced athlete or have specific sport tracking needs, the Samsung Galaxy Watch5 series is the best all-around choice for Samsung phone users. Samsung Galaxy Watch4 owners can standfast, but if you have the Galaxy Watch3 or older, it’s a very nice upgrade.

Best Deals

Samsung Watch5

Samsung Watch5 Pro

Garmin Fenix 7 Series


Image of the Garmin Fenix 7X Solar & Fenix 7 Solar


  • Best-in-class multi-sport tracking
  • Advanced training, sleep, GPS, and biometric tracking
  • 10+ day battery life
  • Solar charging models for extended battery life
  • 5 physical buttons for the ultimate control during workouts
  • Topographic on-wrist mapping
  • Sunlight-friendly Transflective display


  • No ECG heart rate tracking
  • No LTE option
  • Expensive
  • Transflective display isn’t as bright or detailed as traditional AMOLED smartwatch displays


The Garmin Fenix 7 series is a workout beast! Perfect for tracking long-distance sports and activities, it also has a healthy selection of HIIT and strength training workouts. The icing on the cake is the on-wrist videos demonstrating how to perform each exercise.

The advanced running and biking metrics can help any level of athlete, and the Fenix 7 connects directly with a huge selection of chest strap heart-rate monitors and other sensors.

Using the Garmin Connect app, you’ll enjoy the best-in-class multi-sport tracking app that allows you to download and create hundreds of different workouts for free. On top of that, the Garmin Connect website gives you ultimate control over your workout and biometric data. Import, export, and edit your data with ease on your PC or Mac computer.

The Fenix series has always been the flagship wearable for Garmin, with the perfect mix of the main features from all of their other wearable models. The sunlight-friendly transflective display is made for outdoor use and offers superior power efficiency. Plus, the 5-button setup offers perfect navigation in sweat, wet, and other situations where the touch display would be too difficult.

Read Full Review: Garmin Fenix 7 Series

Best Deals

Garmin Fenix 7 Smartwatch Series

Garmin Epix Gen 2


Garmin Epix Gen 2 Premium Active Smartwatch Series


  • Best-in-class multi-sport tracking
  • Advanced training, sleep, GPS, and biometric tracking
  • 5 physical buttons for the ultimate control during workouts
  • 5+ days of battery life with Always On display
  • Topographic on-wrist mapping
  • Beautiful AMOLED display


  • No ECG heart rate tracking
  • No LTE option
  • Expensive


The easiest way to describe the Epix 2 is that it’s a Garmin Fenix 7 with an AMOLED display. You can track almost any sport or activity, download up to 2,000 songs, navigate with on-wrist topographic maps, and more!

The Epix is made tough like the Fenix 7, also. With a sapphire crystal window and titanium body, it’s built to take a beating. Plus, the physical 5-button navigation gives you the ultimate control during workouts and in the elements.

The bottom line is if you’re looking for a traditional smartwatch feel that can keep up with an extra active or athletic lifestyle, the Garmin Epix 2 is the best choice right now. The Garmin Connect App is the best in the business for multi-sport tracking and the best part is that it doesn’t require you to pay a monthly subscription for advanced features.

Best Deals

Garmin Epix Gen 2

Garmin Forerunner Series



  • Best-In-Class Advanced Run Tracking
  • Excellent GPS and biometric tracking
  • 10+ Day battery life
  • 5 physical buttons for the ultimate control during workouts
  • Lightweight design for more comfort on long-distance workouts
  • Most models support downloading your favorite Spotify playlists


  • No ECG heart rate tracking
  • No REAL LTE option (Forerunner 945 LTE doesn’t support calls, 2-way text, or music streaming; LTE is mostly for additional tracking and safety features)
  • Expensive


With over 10 models to choose from, the Garmin Forerunner series has an option for any runner level. Starting from the base model, the Forerunner 55 has all of the essential features that make Garmin wearables perfect for tracking runs. Paired with the feature-rich Garmin Connect App, it’s easily the best running watch under $200.

As you step up through the models (Forerunner 55, 255, and 745), you get more advanced features, luxury add-ons, and increased compatibility to track other sports and activities.

At the top of the Forerunner series sits the 955, which now has a choice of solar charging and LTE versions. Fitted with all the features of the mid and low-tier Forerunners, the 945 models are one step below Garmin’s flagship Fenix 7 series. Luxury perks include Golf tracking, Women’s health tracking, music storage (up to 1,000 songs), and preloaded on-wrist maps.

One of the common denominators that make the Forerunner series so great is their advance running metrics that help any level of runner safely improve their speed, running form, and recovery health. The other common denominator is their fiber-reinforced polymer chassis and overall lightweight construction that offers maximum comfort for long-distance workouts.

Read Full Review: Garmin Forerunner Series

Best Deals

Garmin Forerunner Smartwatch Series

Mobvoi TicWatch Pro 3 Ultra

Best Samsung & Apple Watch Alternative

image of the Mobvoi TicWatch Pro 3 Ultra GPS Smartwatch


  • Unique dual-layer display features a low-power screen for extended battery life (up to 45 days; Essential mode)
  • Best-in-class 2-3 day battery life (Smartwatch mode)
  • Full suite of sensors (Accelerometer, Gyro, SpO2, Barometer, HD PPG heart rate, and more)
  • Beautiful 1.4 in AMOLED display (454 x 454 pixels)
  • 1GB RAM & 8GB of storage
  • Huge selection of 3rd-party downloadable apps to extend functionality (Google Playstore)


  • Pretty bulky on smaller wrists (47mm x 48mm chassis)
  • No new LTE model (Certified Refurbished Pro 4G available on Mobvoi’s site)
  • GPS connection can be slow during initial connection (depending on location)


If you want a more classic-looking wearable or you don’t use an iPhone or Samsung Galaxy phone, the TicWatch 3 Ultra is your best option. As Mobvoi’s flagship product, it’s packed full of almost every smartwatch feature you can think of, except LTE connectivity.

Running on Google’s Wear OS, you have 1,000’s of downloadable 3rd-party apps to choose from to extend the overall functionality. Plus, this watch has some exclusive apps and physical features that push it to the top of the list.

The coolest feature is the dual-layer display that has a low-power transflective display sitting on top of the premium AMOLED display. The transflective display is used in Essential mode to extend battery life up to 45 days and has superior visibility in sunlight compared to the traditional AMOLED smartwatch display.

The icing on the cake is the ability to schedule the Essential mode during sleeping hours, so you can squeeze almost a week of Smart mode usage out of it between charges. Other notable features include 8GB of music & app storage, along with the industry-standard 22mm watchband pin setup that gives you 1,000’s of replacement options.

Best Deals

TicWatch Pro 3 Ultra

Amazfit GT 4 Series

Amazfit GTS 4 & GTR 4


image of the Amazfit GTS 4 and Amazfit GTR 4 Smartwatches


  • Great 7-14 day battery life (depending on model)
  • Choice of square or round style
  • Zepp app syncs with Wear OS, Apple Health, and more
  • 150+ Built-in sport modes
  • 1,000 of FREE 3rd-party watchfaces


  • Zepp app store has a VERY limited selection of 3rd-party apps compared to Wear OS and Apple store.
  • The user interface is pretty basic compared to Wear OS and Apple Watch OS
  • Large bezel for no good reason


Amazfit has gone through plenty of changes over the last couple of years, consistently making impressive leaps in their hardware AND software features. One of the only big downsides to the Amazfit GT series is that they don’t run on Wear OS. That means the selection of downloadable 3rd-party apps is very limited.

On the other hand, the Zepp OS they run on has all the essential features of a stand-alone smartwatch platform, yet it can still be synced with Wear OS, Apple Health, and most of the other major wearable app platforms.

Besides a great price point, the GTS 4 and GTR 4 models feature an impressive 7-14 day battery life, 150+ built-in sport tracking modes, and accurate GPS tracking. Plus, they have built-in Amazon Alexa voice assistant, a built-in mic/speaker combo, and beautiful AMOLED displays ranging from 1.43″ up to 1.75″ in size.

If you don’t need LTE connectivity but you still want all the other luxury smartwatch features like music storage, advanced multi-sport tracking, and on-wrist call/text/music controls, you can’t do any better for under $200.

Best Deals

Amazfit GTS 4

Amazfit GTS 4


How long does a smartwatch battery last?

Battery life in smartwatches is dependent on usage and features. If you’re in the market for a smartwatch that has LTE connectivity like on the Apple Watch, don’t count on getting more that 1-2 days of usage between charges. Also, if you are a frequent user of their built-in GPS tracking, then the battery life gets measured in hours instead of days.

On the other hand, most feature-rich smartwatches come with economy modes that turn off many of the non-essential features so you can extend the battery life to multiple days or even weeks.

What is the best smartwatch brand?

For smartwatches, the best brand depends on what type of phone you use. For instance, Apple and Samsung also produce the best smartwatches for their respective phone users. It also has to do with how you use your wearable. Brands like Garmin, Polar, and Suunto offer some of the best smartwatch options for advanced athletes, as long as you’re willing to give up some of the luxury smartwatch options you find on traditional Apple and Wear OS wearables. There are also many budget-friendly options from companies like Amazfit.

What features does a smartwatch have?

The features that set smartwatches apart from traditional watches, fitness trackers, and other wearables are they typically have more luxury features. Things like LTE/cellular connectivity, downloadable 3rd-party apps, and voice assistants are features traditionally seen only on smartwatches.

Which smartwatch has the largest screen size?

While there are many smartwatches with screens larger than the typical 1.4″, screen to bezel ratio is a better measurement to gauge the quality and comfort. For instance, one of the best examples is the huge 1.78″-1.9″ display on the Apple Watch Series 8. Yet, with the display stretching almost to the edge of the watch, it has a smaller overall size compared to a smartwatch with a smaller screen and a much large bezel area like the bulky Fossil Smartwatch Gen 6

Which is the cheapest Android Smartwatch?

Even though there are plenty of “smartwatches” under $100, Amazfit offers some of the best smartwatch options under $200.

How many types of smartwatches are there?

Besides the obvious round versus square options, types of smartwatches are better broken down by the types of usage and the operating systems they run on. The most popular include the Apple Watch OS and Wear OS for traditional smartwatches. Then you get into Multi-sport watches for advanced athletes like Garmin, Polar, Suunto, and Coros. After that, it’s a hodge-podge of look-alikes and knock-offs that offer very limited smart features.

Do smartwatches have storage?

Yes, most smartwatches have plenty of storage for apps and music to increase functionality and allow you to leave your phone at home during workouts.

Is a smartwatch a smart device?

Yes. A smartwatch gets its “smart” categorization because you’ll typically find them sporting smart features like call/music/text controls, voice assistants, music storage, downloadable apps, and more.

What sensors are in smartwatches?

At the very least, a good smartwatch will have sensors for heart rate, GPS (and other GNSS), and gyro (motion). Additional sensors can include an altimeter (elevation), barometer, compass, thermometer, and more.

What is smartwatch mode?

Smartwatch mode typically refers to the setting in which most or all of the wearable features are active. This setting is usually associated with the worst battery life. That’s why most smartwatches will have one or more lower power modes that will dim the display brightness and turn off “non-essential” features like 24-hour heart rate tracking, blood oxygen level, GPS, and more in order to extend the battery life.