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Forums > Back > Smart Watches Anyone
Anyone here use a Smart Watch? Are they really that useful? Any thoughts, experiences, or recommendations? What do you like and not like about the one you currently have?

Our wellness plan is now offing us a yearly sum of money to spend to spend on health and fitness expenses. Thinks like gym memberships, exercise equipment, and smart watches. I use an old vivosmart 3 to track steps for our plan now and actually like getting notifications on it. But it stil goes back in the draw until next quarter once I max my steps out. 

Being a droid person, I'm eyeballing the Garmin Venu 2 Plus and the Samsung Watch 5 Pro BT version. The big plus for the Garmin is battery life. Far superior to anyone else's. The big plus for the Samsung is apps and turn-by-turn navigation. The turn-by-turn navigation on my GF's Apple watch came in very handy on our recent vacation.
A bit off-topic, isn't it? ;-)

I've got a Suunto 7. Awesome display, good looking, functionality-wise - Ok, but not brilliant. Battery - Ok. Won't upgrade to WearOS 3, though. Seems discontinued?
My spouse has a Suunto 9 Baro. Dim display but otherwise, she's happy.

FWIW, the Amazfit Falcon seems nice. Sane price tag for what it is. The military look is a bit meh, though.

Coros got some good reviews as well. But the watch faces are ugly as hell.

Polar may be worth a look.

The king of the hill is the Garmin Epix2 but then ... the price ...
Chief Editor - opticallimits.com

Doing all things Canon, MFT, Sony and Fuji
It is Just Talk? Plus, I've seen that some of these watches can control your camera phone with the flick of a wrist.

I'm leery of anything with Alexa built in. I'd prefer to stick with something that works with Google Assistant on my droid. I have to admit that $/feature and battery life of the entire Amazfit line makes them compelling.

I also looked at the Ticwatch Pro 3 Ultra. For the price it's selling and features you may not be able to go wrong. Good battery life. I like the idea of essential mode with a 45 day life. A good feature to put the watch in for long flights. However, Mobvio has been promising to update the software to Wear OS 3 for about a year now. Kind of a red flag. It's on the bulky side too.

What else is really annoying it's hard to find out what these watches can do. Most of the reviews focus on watch faces available.
They just released the Amazfit T-Rex Ultra ... what a name.

And they pushed the military look to the next level. Makes you wonder why ...
Nice specs though.
Chief Editor - opticallimits.com

Doing all things Canon, MFT, Sony and Fuji
I'm old school in more ways than one... so I'm wearing a good old sporty Swatch. It does have a battery inside that needs to be changed once in a while, though. :-)
(03-20-2023, 11:39 PM)Rover Wrote: I'm old school in more ways than one... so I'm wearing a good old sporty Swatch. It does have a battery inside that needs to be changed once in a while, though. :-)

Call that old school? 
  Mine still go tick tock  Smile .........
I have a Festina. Actually a nice mechanical watch. But I have free money I need to spend and only a limited number of items I can spend it on.

Honestly, I'm really surprised where smartwatch technology is, not where you'd think for the price of these watches. Beyond that, the reviews are more concerned about what watch faces you can choose, what color watch bands are available, and what music apps you can put on it. Then you dig looking for what I consider the important items like these:

1. Can you receive notifications and reply to them. Most receive notification, many you can't respond.
2. Can you receive and make calls. Some not at all, some you can receive and answer but can't make a call, and some do both.
3. Does it have (Google maps) and can it navigate. IOW, if I'm walking around somewhere on vacation can I find and get turn by turn directions by foot to get to a restaurant by asking may watch? Just because it has GPS doesn't mean it can do this. Most these watches only have the capability to map your run after you're done.
4. Can the battery last more than a day? Battery life is the Achilles tendon of smart watches. IMO, as a wearable, I don't want to have to take it off during the day to top off the charge.
4.5. A nicety is if it has Google Wallet or iPay.

Surprisingly, most of the watches can't do all the above. The fitness watches, Garmin/Fitbit, have ok battery life but miss on other features. A $500 Garmin doesn't have maps and can't navigate. The Samsungs do everything but lack batter life (interestingly, by the reviews if you get through the day with moderate use they call it great battery life).


Youtube really needs to add some sort of feeedback/rating for the user to use. Most of the reviews I tried watching should be paying me! They're that bad. This doesn't even include the bait and switch vids. I should be allowed to click a button that negates that I looked at the video and consequently deprives the poster of making any money. This is the only way I can see getting rid of all the nonsense and force the people to do this away.
Yes, some YT video seems to be about an Orangutan bouncing around as if on bad drugs. Others are obviously just content assemblers from other sources.
And let's not forget the halleluja reviewers (aka "influencers"), who state that just about every product is great.
It's almost as if the "everyday Joe's" videos with a few followers are the best ones - I just watched some obviously non-professional videos about hiking tents and thought they were great.
Often, albeit not always, commercialization is killing the baseline.

Regarding the smartwatches - do you really think that phone calls are a use case? Showing the caller or notifications - ok - but the phone calls themselves?

As for map navigation - yes, I quite like the topo maps on my Suunto 7 (although I thought it was cumbersome to set up). Sure, your phone can do the same - and better - but a quick look is so nice. The only thing to keep in mind is - how often do you really need this?

While I barely use this, I can understand that most are buying one as a fitness tool.
Chief Editor - opticallimits.com

Doing all things Canon, MFT, Sony and Fuji
Agree, YT commercialization is killing the baseline. Nice way to put it.

You're right in that many of the features I want aren't going to be heavily used. I'm sure time and notifications will be the top reasons to look at the watch! However, I want smart in smart watch;-)

Even the fitness features have gone way beyond what most people will ever use.

Another feature which I must be missing something on is the love for the music playback function. Between google assistant and the buttons on my Shokz BT headphones, I can play and control music fine just fine.

Battery life, IMO, is important. Every time we used turn-by-turn navigation on my GF's apple watch, the battery was decimated. It hardly lasts a day w/o using GPS. She carries a brick with her.

Unfortunately, there's not too many cool items us the Wellness plan money on.
My personal favorite is the Garmin Descent mk2 ... but every time I look at the price tag ... LOL
Chief Editor - opticallimits.com

Doing all things Canon, MFT, Sony and Fuji

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