Smartwatches are just part of our lives these days especially if you’re trying to lead a healthy, active lifestyle or you’re on a wellness path. The more advanced models can even assist you in keeping an eye on some health concerns.
This can make finding the best smartwatch for you extremely important and there are a lot on the market – with widely differing features and functionalities. Here at Women Love Tech, we’ve taken a look at quite a few smartwatches in our time so here’s our pick of the best smartwatches for 2022.
Apple Watch 7
With a decent display, good fitness tracking and easy-to-read notifications, Apple is slowly ironing out all the reasons not to buy one of its wearables.
But for those who already have the Apple Watch 6, this smartwatch may be more of the same.
It has essentially the same chipset and little in the way of new features, but what new stuff the Apple Watch 7 does have is useful, especially its larger screen, which is 20% bigger and yet only a tiny bit larger on your wrist, thanks to smaller bezels.
That extra size makes all the difference when interacting with the Apple Watch 7, and the wearable also charges faster than ever. With those things added to the still-excellent Apple Watch 6, the Apple Watch 7 is undeniably a great wearable, and the best smartwatch available today – so long as you have an iPhone.
This smartwatch has strong battery life and improved fitness features so it still is an impressive wearable.
Samsung Galaxy Watch 4
The Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 had a lot of hype around it with the return to Wear OS, having used Tizen for recent models. But this isn’t Wear OS as you might know it – it’s a new take on the operating system, designed alongside Samsung, and with a very Tizen-like skin on the top.
That means you get the best of both worlds, with the functionality and apps of Wear OS, coupled with the look and feel of Tizen.
This smartwatch has strong battery life and a comfortable design thanks to a lightweight build and interesting new body composition measurement tools.
But some of its features require a Samsung phone, and there’s no support for iPhone, so the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 won’t work for everyone. It also may not be worth upgrading to – if you already own a recent Galaxy Watch.
Suunto 9 Peak
The Suunto 9 Peak is the thinnest and toughest from the Suunto line or sports watches so it’s a good choice if you’re looking for a watch which is lightweight and durable at the same time. Because it’s compact, the 9 Peak fits easily on your wrist and you can charge it fully in one hour. Another nice feauture is the ‘Resources’ setting which shows you if you’ve overextended yourself and you need to rest – or if you’re all good and ready to go.
Here at Women Love Tech, we trialled the 9 Peak and we found the battery life was better than the Suunto 9 Baro, easily lasting for two days or more, even after doing a lot of exercise. As well, it’s a comfortable watch to wear and with more than 80 sport modes, there’s hardly anything it can’t track.
As well, the 9 Peak comes with all the features you’d expect from a Suunto watch, including screens you can customise to show you the most relevant data for your exercise, accurate wrist-based heart rate monitoring and in-depth weather insights.
Here’s a quick list of the upgrades Suunto has included in the 9 Peak:
- Minimalistic design, which is 37% thinner and 36% lighter than the award-winning Suunto 9 Baro.
- Blood oxygen level measurements to help determine acclimation levels at higher altitudes. (The Suunto 9 Peak is not a medical device and is not intended for diagnosing or monitoring medical conditions.)
- Automatic backlight intensity adjustment depending on lighting conditions.
- Faster charging: 100% battery in 1 hour.
- Improved watch strap with new metal fastening pin.
- Added watch face that showcases weekly training metrics and inspires new routines.
- The sync speed between the Suunto 9 Peak and the Suunto app is now doubled with Bluetooth 5, the latest iteration in Bluetooth technology.
Read our full review of the Suunto 9 Peak here.
As well as a range of health-tracking features, Withings’s ScanWatch helps you practice your breathing technique and this in turn can help both your mental and your physical health. The ScanWatch achieves this via its breathe mode which guides you to focus on your breathing from one to five minutes, allowing you to focus, relax, and take care of your mind and body.
Here at Women Love Tech, we reviewed the ScanWatch and we found the breathe mode is an easy way to bring short breathing exercises into your daily life. Once these exercises become a part of your routine, you can track the information and use it so you can focus and relax on a daily basis which brings a wide range of benefits for your mental and physical welbeing.
To start these breathing exercises, you just choose the number of breaths you want to take per minute – according to your breathing capacity. Then you observe your heart rate results at the end of the session so you can understand which breathing rate helps you relax the most.
Once you know what relaxes you the most, you can use these exercises as a form of relaxation. The more breaths you take during this exercise, the shorter your breaths will be. Conversely, the fewer breaths you need to take during the exercise, the longer your breaths will be.
How the breathing exercises can benefit your health
With the ScanWatch Breathe mode, you can learn to control your breathing. Doctors often recommend 6 breaths per minute, for 5 minutes, 3 times a day. Practicing this method is called cardiac coherence.
Using the ScanWatch, I practised this and I found I was able to improve and reach these sorts of numbers. It was a calming thing to do and it felt good to take time out to focus on my breathing.
Because the ScanWatch can also track your heart rate – in fact it’s the first smartwatch which can give you a medical-grade ECG, your heart rate and an oximeter through SP02 – you can use it to monitor your heart rate. This means you can check whether your breathing exercises are slowing your heart rate down slightly. This way you can tell if you’re achieving what you’re aiming to with the breathing exercises. If you have any heart issues, it would be wise to include your doctor in what you’re doing and get their advice.
For our full review of the ScanWatch, visit here.
Fitbit Versa 3
Don’t want something from either Samsung or Apple? The Fitbit Versa 3 may be best for your wrist, as this smartwatch from the company is one of the best wrist companions for those who want to focus on fitness features.
There’s built-in GPS, we found it comfortable to wear, and the display is easy to view with a crisp image. Like previous Fitbit smartwatches, this is mostly focused on fitness and won’t be for everyone.
The Fitbit Versa 3 is an excellent wearable, though it’s more a fitness tracker than a smartwatch, with very limited productivity apps on offer.
But for general wearable fans, the Fitbit Versa 3 is a good option, and it’s more affordable than some of the other options on this list too.
For more from Women Love Tech on the latest smartwatches, visit here.