Top Ten Recommended Smart Watches and Fitness Trackers for 2021
Updated: May 3, 2021
Despite the challenges of 2020, wearables took off as people looked for new ways to stay fit and healthy. Are these wearables any good, how do they differ and which ones were the most popular? Let's find out!
While we all found new ways to adjust to spending more time indoors, many aspects of our lives were put on pause during 2020. The wearables world however, did not stand still. Yes Apple and Fitbit are dominant, but thankfully there are a host of other options offering seriously good wearables, all vying for a place on your wrist.
First off let's acknowledge that wearables is still a pretty narrow market, any top ten list of wearables will inevitably focus almost exclusively on just smartwatches or fitness trackers and we think that is just fine for now. Smartwatches and fitness trackers are becoming more and more affordable and offering better services and capabilities to customers. Coupled with emerging subscription based models for providing more health and fitness services and you have a space which is red hot!
Let's take a look at our top ten wearables of 2020. When compiling this list we looked at affordability, platform support (iOS and Android), features and capability, adults and kids, overall design and style and of course, most wished for items from our Antaa users.
Apple Watch 3
Samsung Galaxy Watch 3
Fitbit Versa 3
Apple Watch SE
Apple Watch 6
Fitbit Charge 4
Fitbit Ace 2
Garmin Fenix 6
Withings Scan Watch
Apple Watch 3 | $199
Why does this take top spot? The Apple Watch 3 is the most affordable Apple Watch on the market right now. If you or a loved one have been waiting to get an Apple Watch but unable to justify the $$$, then the Apple Watch offers everything you would want in the most affordable package.
Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 | $259
The Samsung Galaxy Watch is simply the best alternative to an Apple Watch. While it is not on par with the latest Apple Watch 6, if you are not in the Apple ecosystem and are looking to get a solid, affordable, feature rich smartwatch then you can't go wrong with one of these.
Fitbit Versa 3 | $299
The Fitbit Versa 3 takes our top three spot as it brings capability, style and affordability into an amazing package. This is a gorgeous smartwatch with always on display, built in GPS, amazing battery life, blood oxygen and temperature tracking when sleeping and a host of other capabilities we have come to expect from a smartwatch. Fitbit have done an amazing job and you can't go wrong with this.
Apple Watch SE | $279
Why is this on the list and number four? Don't panic, but whether it is due to platform preference or simple affordability not everybody has an iPhone. The question has been asked a bazillion times, do I need an iPhone to use an Apple Watch? Let us confirm for you the answer is yes... but like life in 2020, it is (actually very) complicated. The short answer is yes you need an iPhone and forget all those other sites giving you tips on how to hack your way round it, you can't. However, what makes the Apple Watch SE make our list is that it supports family sharing which means family members can use an Apple Watch but not be dependent on an iPhone (i.e. great for kids). Apple Watch SE costs more $$$ than the Apple Watch 3, but this may be enough to justify the extra spend.
Apple Watch 6 | $399
Why isn't this number one on the list? Well, its expensive! Yes it is the best smartwatch on the planet right now, yes it takes the number one spot on every other top ten list, but it is inaccessible to everyone. Apple's saturation of the smartwatch market with their own products is proving to be a winning strategy and our prediction is that their flagship Apple Watch releases will continue to increase in price as they are now priced alongside premium smartphones.
Fitbit Charge 4 | $179
You may have noticed our top five wearables are all smartwatches. If you want something less bulky on your wrist but not no less stylish or capable, then the Fitbit Charge 4 would be our first choice. The latest edition is a big step up in terms of capability (built in GPS and activity tracking) and style. It's sleek, compatible with both iOS and Android and pretty affordable.
Fitbit Ace 2 | $69
One of our pet peeves with top ten lists is that they are often too narrow in scope. What about little kids and smartwatches and fitness trackers? Our recommendation, stay away from the cheap no-name stuff (sub $50) as they simply won't last. If your kid is hounding you for a tracker and you are unsure where to start, you can't go wrong with the Fitbit Ace 2. It's solid, backed by Fitbit, comes in fun colors and has enough basic functionality to have your kids sharing their stats with you pretty quickly.
Garmin Fenix 6 | $599
Gamin are really doing amazing things with their smartwatches and have carved out a space which excels in outdoor activity, adventure, durability and capability. The Fenix 6 is probably the ultimate sports smartwatch on the market right now. Yes it has GPS so you don't get lost on your hikes, but did you know it also has a heart rate monitor which even works under water as you scuba dive? It is pricey and bulky, but if function is more important than fashion in a smartwatch, this is the one we would pick.
Withings Scan Watch | $299
Every top ten list should have a curveball and something a little unexpected... right? The Withings Scan Watch makes our top ten based on style. If you are looking for a smartwatch, but looking for something more traditional for your wrist, then the Withings Scan Watch might be for you. The design is gorgeous and a beautiful time piece blend of traditional and modern. While it is not feature packed (this could be a bonus for some folks), it does have an impressive ECG and heart monitor. This may be the gift you have been looking to find for your parents or grandparents.
AmazFit Bip | $59
And finally, rounding out our top ten wearables for 2020 is the AmazFit Bip. Easily the most affordable smartwatch you can find. If Pebble were still a thing, it would probably resemble an AmazFit Bip. Yes it is cheap, so it is not going to compare well against the higher end premium smartwatches in style and design. However, don't let that put you off. How would you like 45 days of battery life. That's not a typo! And it has always on display, built in GPS etc... this is an amazing little smart watch and super affordable. Makes our top ten any day!
And there you have it. No doubt we will see more smartwatches and fitness trackers emerge and continue to evolve in 2021 and we are super excited. Whether you are working out at home, going for a hike, on your bike, counting steps, monitoring your heart, listening to music or cooking in the kitchen we think you will find something for everyone in the list above.