The Best Android Smartwatches for 2021 | Digital Trends

If you want a smartwatch for your Android phone, the choice can be bewildering. To help narrow down the options, we’ve selected the best smartwatches that work with your Android phone, and put them all together here. The list does not include only smartwatches that use Google’s Wear OS software, but Samsung’s Tizen software, and other operating systems too. Almost all smartwatches will work with your Android phone, except the Apple Watch. If you own an iPhone, take a look at our list of best smartwatches to see why it’s our overall recommendation.

We’ve tested dozens of smartwatches, including many luxury models that specifically target watch enthusiasts. Our rigorous real-world testing gives us unmatched insight into the smartwatch market. The best Android smartwatch today is either the Samsung Galaxy Watch 3, or the Mobvoi TicWatch Pro 3. Both represent the best their respective operating systems have to offer, with slick performance, attractive hardware, and clever control systems.

Once you’ve chosen your watch, it’s always good to grab it at a bargain price, and we’ve always got an up-to-date list of the best smartwatch offers.

Best Android smartwatch at a glance:

Best overall: Samsung Galaxy Watch 3

Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

The Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 (from $399) is as close as you can get to an Apple Watch for your Android phone, by which we mean it’s a delectable mix of strong hardware and design, reliable and attractive software, and a clever, user-friendly control system. The Galaxy Watch 3 uses Samsung’s Tizen operating system rather than Google’s Wear OS, and it’s all the better for it.

Before we talk about the software, let’s consider the design. The round case comes in two sizes, a modest 41mm for smaller wrists, and a larger 45mm model too. An AMOLED touchscreen is on the front, and the bezel around it is more than just a decorative feature — it’s the key to controlling your watch.

It’s a wonderfully ergonomic experience to rotate the bezel with your finger and move through the software’s menus, then use the touchscreen to select your options. It’s neater and easier to use than similar systems incorporated into the crown on some Wear OS smartwatches. Samsung’s software is bright and attractive, fast and reliable, and feature-packed too.

The watch receives notifications from your phone, measures heart rate, takes blood oxygen levels, tracks activity and fitness, will watch over your sleep, and even take an electrocardiogram reading too. The battery will last a full day with heavy use, but can be stretched to two days if you turn it off overnight.

All this adds up to a very desirable smartwatch that works with any Android smartphone through Samsung’s Wear app, and even with the Apple iPhone if you don’t mind missing out on some key features. Prices for the Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 start at $399 so it’s not a cheap smartwatch, but it’s so polished and usable it’s worth the money.

Read our in-depth review of the Samsung Galaxy Watch 3

Best Wear OS: Mobvoi TicWatch Pro 3

Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

Mobvoi’s TicWatch Pro 3 represents the pinnacle of Wear OS smartwatch technology at the moment, and it excels at delivering long battery life due to the clever use of a second screen. It’s the first smartwatch available with Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon Wear 4100 processor inside, and it’s much more capable than the aging Snapdragon Wear 3100 found in most competing models.

The fast processor is more energy efficient on its own, but it’s matched with a second LCD screen on the TicWatch Pro 3, which deals with the ambient always-on screen to drastically lower power consumption. We got three days of use out of the TicWatch Pro 3 in our review, which is three times what many other smartwatches can deliver. Mobvoi has used this tech before, but it has been improved here with a backlight, making it easier to see at night. What’s more, if you use the Essential Mode, standby can be extended to 45 days by cutting out some of the connected features.

You can track fitness, sleep, and activity with the TicWatch Pro 3, which also has a heart rate sensor and can read blood oxygen levels too. It has an IP68 water resistance rating, plus many Mobvoi apps for breathing exercises, relaxation methods, and exercise plans. While the style is a little ordinary, it’s well built and comfortable to wear, despite the 47mm case size. Google’s Wear OS software is the weak link, and isn’t as reliable as Samsung’s Tizen.

This aside, the $299 Mobvoi TicWatch Pro 3 is the most powerful smartwatch you can buy for your Android phone, and it has the longest battery life too. If you live in the U.K. or parts of Europe, there’s an LTE version of the Ticwatch Pro 3 available too, and we had a closer look at the new model here.

Read our in-depth review of the Mobvoi TicWatch 3 Pro

Best for fashion: Skagen Falster 3

Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

The Skagen Falster 3 ($295) perfectly balances understated, fashionable design with strong technology. The 42mm body has a 1.2-inch OLED screen and three buttons on the side for a sleek look that will suit most wrists. The stainless steel Falster 3 comes in gunmetal grey with a choice of colorful straps, or in a stealthy all-black design if you choose the Falster 3 X By Kygo special edition.

It uses the Qualcomm Snapdragon 3100 platform with 1GB of RAM, plus it has NFC for Google Pay, GPS, a heart rate monitor, the ability to make and receive calls from your phone, and the latest version of Google’s Wear OS software. Performance is good too, and the battery will last a day even with a workout session, plus it charges to full in about one hour. Only Wear OS’s frustrations disappoint, but they’re minimized on the otherwise excellent Skagen Falster 3.

If the Falster 3‘s design is too minimalist for you, then do take a look at the Fossil Gen 5, which shares the same technology but in a slightly larger 44mm body.

Read our in-depth Skagen Falster 3 X Kygo review

Best for style: Moto 360

Moto 360 watch face
Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

Following a much-needed price cut to $299 soon after launch, the Moto 360 has become a more tempting prospect, particularly as it can now be found at even lower prices. Made from thick stainless steel and available in gold, steel, or black finishes with a choice of straps too, it’s a great looking, very stylish smartwatch. The top button on the side of the case rotates to navigate Wear OS more easily, and there is a heart rate monitor on the back. Qualcomm’s Snapdragon Wear 3100 platform with 1GB of RAM powers the Moto 360.

We’ve added the Moto 360 to the list because of the classy design and manageable size, making it suitable for many people, plus the simple software which sticks rigidly to standard Wear OS for relatively smooth performance. The battery life is good too, though you won’t get more than a full day.

Read our in-depth Moto 360 review

Best for women: Kate Spade Scallop 2

Kate Spade Scallop 2 Smartwatch review
Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

Kate Spade is known as a fashion-forward, tech-friendly company, and the Kate Spade Scallop 2 proves it. The Scallop 2 features a similarly understated and classic design as the original, but then pulls in more design aspects associated with the Kate Spade brand for a fresher look. It’s slim — which helps ensure that the watch looks stylish — and has all-new tech including GPS and a heart rate sensor, new watch faces, and NFC for Google Pay.

We really like the Scallop 2‘s clever watch face that can be set up to complement the color scheme of your outfit. Don’t be put off by the large-sounding 42mm body. The screen is just 1.2 inches, so the watch is very compact and wearable. There are various Wear OS smartwatches designed specifically for women, but this is by far our favorite. Don’t dismiss the original Scallop if you happen to see a great deal on it, either, because it has most of the advantages of its sequel.

Read our in-depth Kate Spade Scallop review

Best for runners: Suunto 7

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Suunto is best known for its hardcore fitness watches, but earlier this year launched its first smartwatch using Google’s Wear OS. The Suunto 7 embraces the brand’s sporty design and superb fitness tracking ability, while pairing it with the more everyday usable software, and excellent battery life. Yes, really, excellent battery life. It lasted two days on a single charge in our review even with regular use.

Fans of the brand will want more than that, and happily, Suunto’s own comprehensive training app is included, along with a clever “heat” map showing popular local walking and running routes. There’s a heart rate monitor on the back and GPS too, plus the usual features including NFC. The battery improvements come from a close partnership with Qualcomm, and tweaks made to the Snapdragon 3100 chipset inside the watch.

The Suunto 7 is expensive for a Wear OS watch at $500, but about what you’d expect to pay for a top-flight GPS-based fitness tracking smartwatch without Google’s software.

Read our in-depth Suunto 7 review

Best cheap Android smartwatch: Amazfit GTR 2e

Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

It’s possible you uncovered Amazfit’s smartwatches while searching for low-priced smartwatches on Amazon. If that’s the case, forget anything you may have heard about the first generation of Amazfit watches. Recent models, like the Amazfit GTR 2e and the GTS 2e, are significantly improved in terms of function and design. We personally recommend the GTR 2e version, as it’s incredibly similar to the $180 Amazfit GTR 2, only less expensive. Differences between the two devices are minute. You may notice a more curved screen, Wi-Fi, and less internal storage — but the features aren’t a deal-breaker. 

Manufacturers made the GTR 2e with an aluminum and glass front combined with a plastic back. The watch is lightweight and fits snug on your wrist. It features a sleek 1.39-inch AMOLED screen, which is both reactive and colorful. The smartwatch supports Amazfit’s operating system, which is where you’ll find the bulk of the company’s design improvements. It’s fast, reliable, and functional. It can pair quickly to your smartphone, and the Zepp app needed to sync your watch is improved as well. 

GTR 2 makes an effort to stack up with more-expensive competitors. It features a heart rate sensor and can measure blood oxygen levels. Currently, there are 90 different activities to track data, and it’s all displayed clearly on the screen. You’ll receive notifications on your watch, although the messages come across in an odd format, and you won’t be able to interact with them on your watch itself. The battery life doesn’t quite reach Amazfit’s promise, but it gets close to about ten days. The Amazfit GTR 2e’s competitive price makes it a great value.

Read our in-depth review of the Amazfit GTR 2e here

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