Three of the best smartwatches

The latest gadgets not only tell you the time, but also how your workout is going, says Nicole Garcia Merida.

Fossil’s understated elegance 

The Fossil Gen 5 is a “good-looking watch… that doesn’t immediately scream it’s a piece of technology”, says Samuel Gibbs in The Guardian – but it still “gets the job done and looks the part” too. You can choose from various straps and watch faces, and the performance is good, with no noticeable lag and an impressive battery life – a single charge should see you through the whole day. The notification handling is where the operational system really “shines” – notifications pop up and can be dismissed, or replied to with previously saved messages, a voice transcription tool, or a “surprisingly good” keyboard. The fitness tracking options are less impressive than with rival offerings, but the watch still has the basics – it can count steps and monitor your heart rate, for example. 

From £279, fossil.com

Samsung’s great all-rounder 

“If you have an Android phone and want the best compatible smartwatch going, the Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 is it,” says Henry Burrell in Trusted Reviews. It has a great design, a battery life of two full days from a single charge, “lightning-quick” performance, and solid fitness features, including a heart-rate sensor and GPS, which means it can track outdoor runs and cycle routes without requiring a phone, while providing data-rich feedback on your workouts. You can also choose which of your phone’s apps send through notifications and view and reply to messages from the watch. It is “the best all-round wearable” Samsung has made.

From £269, samsung.com

A high-tech personal trainer 

GARMIN International ©2019

The Garmin Vivoactive 4 “puts the tech smarts of the watches used by the ultra-marathon-running elite” into a more accessible piece of kit for everyday users, says Andrew Williams on TechRadar. It’s a “great fitness tracker”, which gives you access to “stacks of stats”, including your heart rate, and comes with a music-streaming tool. It can track more than 20 exercises and acts like a coach as it puts you through a workout. The battery should last four to five days, longer if you’re not using active tracking tools. This is a great watch for those who exercise regularly and focus on health rather than performance. 

From £259.99, garmin.com

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