Can a smart watch be stylish?
If you walk into an interview for that hotshot law firm…
…and it looks like there is a mini-computer on your wrist.
Will that send the wrong message?
Will you have lost the job before the interview even started?
We know that the traditional wristwatch has been a status symbol for men.
Timepieces are known worldwide for having class, sophistication, and culture.
We also understand that the desire for a traditional watch is evolving into wanting a watch that is current with the digital age…the smart watch.
It’s important that we stay relevant in our style…
…while at the same time keeping an open mind to new technology.
Below are the 10 most stylish smartwatches to consider if you are a tech forward gent.
Now you may be asking, “What is a smartwatch?”
Or perhaps you know what it is but don’t fully understand all that they are capable of.
Some common functions of a smartwatch are:
- Helps you with driving or walking directions
- Connects to your phone from afar.
- Use voice search
- Stay informed about breaking news, weather alerts and more.
- Use apps to read books, listen to music, or shop.
- Respond to messages and emails.
- Be stylish with interchangeable bands that will pair well with various ensembles.
As you can see, smartwatches have a bevy of different capabilities that traditional timepieces do not.
But with so many variations out there, which ones are the best?
The below list is not exhaustive but is a guide to help you understand the differences, capabilities, and nuances of some of the most popular brands.
New technological advances are being produced constantly and we want to assist you in understanding them.
Considerations and Quick Tips
It’s important to note the following:
- As Most smartwatches are designed to serve as companions to your smartphone, device- compatibility is very important.
- Don't buy a smartwatch without confirming that it will work with your smartphone.
- Pay attention to rated battery life when shopping.
- Check that the watch band's clasp or buckle is easy to use and easy to swap. This is especially important for being able to pair with many different outfits.
After taking into consideration the above elements and tips, you can use the below list to assist in making the right decision when purchasing one.
The Apple Watch leads its competitors in its aesthetics. The Apple Watch has many stylish bands that take the watch from classic to modern. It comes in two different sizes (38mm and 42mm) which make the watch more unisex than others.
Operating System: iOS
Advantages: Most band options, comes in 2 sizes (38mm and 42mm), cutting edge design, splash proof
Disadvantages: It does not have GPS navigation, lacks great sports features, and some men find the size of the case too small, minimal battery life, and pricey.
Styling Recommendations: Can be worn with a bevy of different looks because of a number of interchangeable bands that are on the market. If dressing the watch up, it looks best with a modern fit or slim cut suit. The sleek design and clean lines work well with the slim lapels and fitted sleeves and pant legs.
Best Rating: Best smartwatch for iOS
Sony Smart Watch
The lads over at Tech Radar tell us that the Sony SmartWatch 3 is powerful, well-equipped, and has a great display screen that remains crisp and clear.
It’s also trans reflective which means that there is less glare on the screen when in the sun, thus easier to read.
Operating System: Android Wear
Advantages: very good performance (Android), built in GPS, good screen, micro USB charger
Disadvantages: GPS performance isn’t consistent, limited styling options, weak charging port
Styling Recommendations: Great for sporty looks. The Sony SmartWatch 3 has a rectangular face with smooth and rounded corners. This option keeps its sleek and modern which works well with the casual sporty vibe. It can also work well with the minimalist aesthetic. This smartwatch also has a very stylish stainless steel band that adds a bit of power to an otherwise sporty look.
Best Rating: Best Android Wear option, according to Wearable.
Samsung Gear 2
The Samsung Gear 2 is thought to be very desirable, super intuitive, and remarkably compatible.
When looking at the watch, it reminds us of the Swiss-made Swatch that revolutionized the 80’s and 90’s.
It has a ridged bezel, comes with a leather strap and a smaller body that combines for an exceptional feel that can be easily fitted with third party straps.
Operating System: Tizen
Advantages: Faster than Apple or Android Wear and rotating bezel that allows the user to seamlessly switch between apps, cycle back to notifications, as well as change volume and brightness all in the same motion.
Disadvantages: less than perfect software extras, customization limitations compared to rivals, Tizen Operating System doesn’t have a lot of apps
Styling Recommendations: This extremely sleek watch works well with all looks. Its round yet futuristic aesthetic makes the watch a universal choice for all. Because it is reminiscent of the Swatch Watch, this look would really be a staple for the gentlemen who are fans of the retro, hippie streetwear looks.
Best Rating: Best Smartwatch
This Intel-powered device is known as the best built and highest quality Android Wear watch on the market.
It’s styling and craftsmanship is incredibly comparable to a regular (dare we us such a basic word) Tag Heuer.
Tag has chosen to forgo the traditional smart watch route and left the timepiece remarkably similar to its standard mechanical versions.
It’s basic and strongest function is to tell time. It does boast, however, live notification and widgets that don’t encroach the wearer and ruin the traditional watch character and tone.
Operating System: Google powered by Intel for use on Android Wear
Advantages: Transflective, long battery life with quick charging, superior styling, and craftsmanship, non-intrusive notifications, trade in option after 2 years
Disadvantages: Bulky thus not known as female friendly, very pricey, no GPS, weak display
Styling Recommendations: Honestly, IT’S A TAG. Nothing else needs to be said, but let’s indulge. The design is second to none which is typical of Tag. This timepiece can be worn with anything…literally! Its similarity to the mechanical Tag Heuer allows this smart watch to have the same wearability. The weight and size of the watch make it a statement and the prominence of the dial is sure to work with sporty, casual, business casual, business wear, formal wear, black tie, and white tie!
Best Rating: Best craftsmanship
The Asus Zen Watch 2 comes in two sizes. This is a great option so that it can be worn by both men and women.
This smartwatch has many strap options made of different materials (rubber, steel, leather, and even Swarovski covered).
Operating System: Android and iOS
Advantages: well-priced, Wi-Fi chip, fast charging (full charge in minutes), 2 sizes (18mm and 22mm), 18 different straps, easy to switch the bands, and officially works with iOS…
Disadvantages: no GPS and no heart rate monitor, relatively chunky frame, slightly uncomfortable and the system lags at times.
Styling recommendations: Asus Zen is a very versatile watch. Depending on the bands chosen, it can be worn in a variety of different ways. The face of the watch is every clean and simple. This is a great feature because it will not overpower the wearer’s wrist or outfit. It’s a stylish options that could be used for any type of outfit.
Best Rating: Best for Budget
Known for its geeky design, this very lightweight smartwatch is a very comfortable wear and is the second generations Pebble.
The bezel is wide which gives the illusion of the screen being very small.
The screen has a backlight but is a bit dim.
It’s water resistant up to 50mm but is known to scratch rather easily. Pebble is also known for the 7-day battery life that the company hosts and it are still true with the pebble time.
Operating System: iOS, and Android
Advantages: great battery life, very comfortable, compatible with iOS and Android Wear, affordable
Disadvantage: Need more quality apps, dim screen, features are limited.
Style recommendations: The neat and clean design will look nice on a suit. It will work well with business casual looks as well. Due to the bezel being large, it can make the face look much smaller so if you’re a fan of larger looking watches, steer clear of this one.
Best Rating: Best for techies
Pebble Time Steel
The brother and more stylish version of the above mentioned Pebble Time, the Pebble Time Steel.
The sleek design is more inclined to appeal to the more stylish gentleman rather than the tech geek as does the Pebble Time.
It’s 1mm larger which allows for a larger battery.
There are the silver, black and gold versions with a classic stainless steel strap plus red and black leather options.
The functionality of the Pebble Time is almost identical to that of the Pebble time.
Operating System: iOS and Android
Advantages: larger battery with 10 days of batter life, classic style, iOS and Android compatible, reliable notifications
Disadvantages: lacks many quality apps, difficulty reading screen, no fitness feature
Style Recommendations: The metal bracelet makes this watch a statement piece that would work well for the dapper gentleman. It’s a bit dressier in nature but can be worn casually as well. It gives a trendy element with the available red leather band that will add a pop of color to your wrist should you so desire.
Best Rating: Best battery life (up to 10 hours)
Moto 360 2nd Gen
The Moto 360 2 is available in 2 sizes, 42mm, and 46mm.
The size of the case makes it a powerhouse and a for the sure statement piece.
The cases are have 3 different strap widths that will cater to men and women respectively. This watch has a fully round display that is unique to smartwatches.
There are no real standout features on the Moto 360 2 but there’s a different story with the Moto 360 Sport.
The sport has more customization of backgrounds, accents, and live dials; a plethora of watch faces; and an optical heart rate monitor on the inside of the watch body.
The fitness applications are good but not really for the enthusiast.
Operating System: Android
Advantages: very customizable, extremely classy, lightweight, improved performance
Disadvantages: less than decent battery life, no features to stand out in Android Wear.
Style Recommendations: Moto 360 2 is a very stylish and classy watch. The watch is fully customizable with leather and metal bands at 3 different sizes. Its sleek face allows the watch to be worn well with most looks.
Best Rating: Best for customization – Moto 360 2 | Best for Running – Moto 360 Sport
Running, cycling, swimming, golf and a whole lot more are all on board Garmin’s first smartwatch.
Garmin has combined an incredible set of fitness features with these top notch notifications to create the world’s first sports watch that can be worn every day.
It’s made by Garmin so the GPS and sports tracking are strong. In addition, the fitness tracker keeps tabs of data such as your daily steps and nightly sleep. It syncs to your cell phone and with most apps seamlessly.
Operating System: Android and iOS via the Garmin Connect Smartphone App
Advantages: Loads of fitness applications with strong analytics, great Bluetooth syncing, strong battery life, lightweight, and great notifications.
Disadvantages: Boring design, dull and low-resolution screen
Style recommendations: A true sports watch. When competing and/or training, this watch is the one to wear.
Best Rating: Best Sports watch
LG Watch Urbane
This watch is a thing of beauty. To be blunt the shine and polish of the metal borders on bling.
The design is very classic and has the essence of a Szanto.
The battery life is about 2 days.
This watch has the ability to remote connect to your cell phone via a different Wi-Fi network.
This proves useful when at the office and needing to connect to the job’s network.
This watch is not known as a fitness watch but it has some usefulness in this category. There is an optical heart sensor with google fit integration (similar technology to Fitbit).
Operating system: Powered by Google for Android Wear
Advantages: Good battery life, very stylish, full Android Wear updates, great display.
Disadvantages: No GPS, pricey, low-quality leather strap, the casing is large so might not fit smaller wrists.
Style recommendations: Looks GREAT with a suit or business casual look. The dapper gentleman would love to add this to his collection. It fits right in.
Best Rating: Best professional styled.
To conclude, as with all watches, there are many types, variations, and styles. It’s about choosing the piece that best fits your needs and aesthetic. There are many more types of smartwatches but this list serves to get you started on your quest to understand them and find which smartwatch best suits you!