Are smartwatches worth it?
-This is the question that seems to be on the sceptic’s lips recently but are smartwatches worth it?
Before we go into depth to answer the question if smartwatches are worth it or not, firstly let us examine the reason why people are buying smartwatches
- To track health e.g. heart rate, Afiib, Sp02 levels
- Smartwatches enable you to reply to messages and emails directly without getting your smartphone out
- Ability to improve sleep with sleep tracking
- To aid navigation from maps and other 3rd party apps
- To help to find your smartphone with lost phone function
- Maintain connectivity whilst doing activities
As we can see the reason we are buying more and more smartwatches these days revolves around health and functionality over the plain old analogue wristwatch. Not to mention that a lot of the smartwatches these days are great looking on the wrist and have great curb appeal.
Lets look at are smartwatches worth it in slightly more detail :
1. To track Health
The ability to be able to track your actual health in real-time is amazing and for some people, life-saving.
If you have a medical condition that needs 24/7 monitoring like angina and heart problems then having a heart rate monitor on your wrist would be very advantageous for obvious reasons. Most of us are lucky enough to just desire the smartwatch features due to curiosity. Some athletes do use the data logging features on some smartwatches to improve their fitness and performance too.
Some smartwatches nowadays can track important metrics like SP02 which is the oxygen levels in the blood by bouncing light off your skin with the rear light sensors and then using some fancy algorithms to determine the oxygen saturation in your blood.
Smartwatches can be used to detect Irregular Heartbeat, also known as Atrial Fibrillation or AFib. This is a health condition that can be a precursor to serious cardiac events and stroke. A smartwatch may be able to pick up such conditions but is not accurate 100% of the time and if anything is suspect you are recommended to get checked up by a health professional.
The Best smartwatch to track health is the Withings Scanwatch
2. Smartwatches enable you to reply to messages and emails directly without getting your smartphone out
I suppose this feature in a smartwatch is just convenience and may be classed as us just getting lazy but there are times when this could be useful. – Imagine you are in a meeting and you feel a buzz on your wrist from your smartphone and it’s from your wife telling you what is for tea. All you need to do to read it is twist your wrist to read the message instead of reaching for your phone and embarrassing yourself in front of everyone in the meeting.
The more that we interact with social media these days the more notifications we seem to get. This is only going to get more prevalent.
The best smartwatch for replying to messages and emails is the Apple Watch Series 6
3. Ability to improve sleep with sleep tracking
Good quality sleep is linked to general health, mental wellbeing and even avoiding serious long-term illnesses, so using a sleep tracker to check you’re getting enough rest can be a genuine help.
Sleep Stage are tracked by most top sleep monitors, and this means logging the amounts of light, deep and REM sleep plus any awake time – including tossing and turning.
The best smartwatch with sleep tracking is the Fitbit Sense
4. To aid navigation from maps and other 3rd party apps
Outdoor watches only can it help you enjoy your off-piste adventures when it comes down to navigation, but they can also be great safety tools. Navigation can be quite important when deciding if smartwatches are worth it. Thanks to the likes of Garmin, Suunto and Polar and newcomers like Coros, there’s a wealth of great devices to choose from.
Essentially we are talking about the ability to navigate with the GPS function on the smartwatch. Garmin is at the knife-edge with GPS technology as they pioneered the tech way back and with their APP connectivity, they are going to take some beating. This does not go to say that other manufacturers are no good, not by a long way. There are a lot of good smartwatches out there with great GPS and this category is the hardest one to pick a winner.
The Best smartwatch to aid navigation is Garmin Fenix 6 series
5. To help to find your smartphone with lost phone function
As you well know, losing a phone or keys is an extremely frustrating experience. It always seems to happen before some important occasion that we just can’t be late for!
Thankfully a smartwatch can render this inconvenience a thing of the past. Helping to find a smartphone that is a lifeline to some people in this day and age just really does answer the question, are smartwatches worth it.
Most of them have a “Find Phone” feature. You can connect your phone or any device with it and you will be able to ring it through your watch whenever you wish.
Lost your phone? Just press a few buttons on your watch to locate it in seconds.
It is too hard to choose the Best smartwatch that helps to find your smartphone with lost phone function as nearly all smartwatches now have this function so I am not going to choose a winner.
6. Maintain connectivity whilst doing activities
When you are running, cycling, swimming or any other form of exercise, you might want to peek into your messages, calls or notifications. Sometimes you can’t keep a phone with you in those activities, and it’s just awkward and annoying when you do anyway. Here is where a smartwatch becomes really useful.
This function could really become useful if you’re in the water say swimming and you get a text message or you need to check your pace in the pool, For this reason,
The best smartwatch to maintain connectivity whilst doing activities is Garmin Vivoactive 3
I hope that this article helps in deciding the best smartwatches and helping to decide are smartwatches worth it