In general, recommending an Apple Watch is simple – if you use an iPhone and want a smartwatch, staying at home with Apple will usually be your best bet.
But there are several Apple Watches on the market right now. The introduction of the Apple Watch Series 7 in September 2021 brought Apple’s total lifespan to nine, with the company currently offering three models in stores: Series 7, SE, and Series 3. Among these, there are multiple variants that they differ in size, connectivity, design and price.
Then there are older but still up-to-date generations that you can track down from third-party retailers like Best Buy and Amazon, as well as options to buy refurbished devices. Everyone has different needs, and you may be able to find an Apple Watch that is less expensive and more in tune with your wishes by following these paths.
The imminent launch of watchOS 9 will further complicate these decisions and, as usual, Apple is expected to launch new models in the fall. For those looking to take the plunge todayHowever, we’ve scoured the market for old, new, and refurbished Apple Watch and tested current options to determine which one is best for you. We will keep this guide updated over time as new models are introduced, so if you want to upgrade from an older model or get on board for the first time, let us do your research for you.
The best Apple Watch for most people
Apple Watch Series 7
Buy: From $ 345 on Amazon, Apple, Target, Walmart
The Apple Watch Series 7 is the best smartwatch you can buy right now. It is the most well-equipped and well-supported wearable device on the market, which makes it the most real extension of your phone available. The number of apps and integrations is unmatched, allowing you to do everything from opening your garage door to checking the ocean tides right from your wrist. It’s not the most embellished fitness accessory – we’d go with a Garmin smartwatch for serious athletes and outdoor folks who want longer battery life and deeper workout features, but the Series 7 is shutting down a bit too. of road here.
Equipped with sensors for ECG monitoring, blood oxygen readings and heart rate, the 7 Series achieves the top-tier triplet for health metrics in wearable devices. Add GPS, compass, always-on altimeter, built-in drop detection, 50-meter water resistance, and the option for cellular functionality, and you’ve got a fitness companion you can take with you anywhere for both tracking and safety .
Apple’s “digital crown” mechanism is still an intuitive way to scroll through the watch, and there are fun case colors and a host of strap options to suit your style, including the Nike sports straps, stylish metal options, intertwined bandsand a ton more.
With the upcoming release of watchOS 9 this fall, the 7 Series will also gain the ability to deliver advanced running metrics (e.g. pace, cadence, pace), heart rate zones, and new multisport tracking modes, among other features. .
Series 7 also sports the largest display of any Apple Watch, thanks to its smaller bezels and 1mm larger watch case than Series 6. It’s not a big difference, except the larger size they facilitate a QWERTY keyboard for text entry — but it allows for larger text formats which can be a game changer for those with low vision.
With charging coils and a USB-C-based charger, the Series 7 is also the Apple Watch with the fastest charging, going from 0 to 100 percent in just over an hour in our tests. That’s about half the time it takes to charge any other Apple Watch model. This is also the only dust-resistant (IP6X) Apple Watch and the only one that supports typing via a full QWERTY keyboard.
To be clear, the Series 7, like every Apple Watch in this guide, isn’t perfect. While Apple’s smartwatches enjoy the broadest level of support for third-party apps (and accessories), you won’t find all iPhone apps on the Apple Watch, far from it. And not all apps are particularly useful. (You do truly want to be able to swipe Twitter on your wrist?) However, almost any app relevant to a wrist experience is available.
The biggest sacrifice you will make with owning any Apple Watch is battery life; it only lasts a day or so. Other smartwatches, like those from Garmin and Fitbit, can last a week or more, even if you won’t find the same level of app support (third-party or first-party) on your iPhone. And yes, the Apple Watches are still iPhone only and will likely never change. But overall, and especially for iPhone owners, the Apple Watch is the most complete wearable platform on the market and, right now, the Series 7 is the most comprehensive offering for most people.
For who is it: Those who want the latest in health and fitness features or those who simply need a bigger screen
The update is valid for: Series 5 and below