With so many excellent choices out there, it’s hard to know which are the best smartwatches for men. We look at the top timepieces that bridge the worlds of fashion and high-tech function.
1: Apple Watch 4
It’d be hard to talk about smartwatches for men without mentioning the Apple watch. Two things make the Apple Watch Series 4 the smartwatch for smartwatch purists. First, there is the style. Series 4 models are slightly larger than earlier offerings but still retain that iconic square watch face that makes them instantly recognizable as a high-tech wonder on your wrist.
Second is the tech. At the forefront of smartwatch technology when it debuted in 2015, the Apple Watch continues to evolve with some amazing features. With a screen that comes almost to the case edge, the display is bigger and brighter than past incarnations. One technological advancement is the ECG app that takes electrocardiograms and alerts you if it finds an irregular heart rhythm, or if your heart is beating too slow or fast. Past Apple Watches had you summon Siri with a press of the crown, but the latest version is voice-activated. You also no longer need constant connectivity to listen to Apple Music and podcasts with offline synching and the ability to save your audio locally.
2: TAG Heuer Connected Modular 45
This one is all about the looks. Tech-savvy detractors will mention that the TAG Heuer Connected doesn’t really do much more than a lower-end smartwatch in terms of technical capability. And they have a point. But watch aficionados will be quick to point out you have a TAG Heuer on your wrist and isn’t that really the point?
The “45” in its name refers to its 45-mm diameter, making it a big watch that wears hefty. While this kind of bulk may not suit other smartwatches, the Connected Modular’s bold presentation suits its size well. The solid metal case also makes it stand out compared to less expensive smartwatches. You probably won’t get much use out of the non-rotating bezel, serving more as a nod to the design of traditional TAG Heuer watches. For sporty good looks, it’s hard to beat the Blue Matte Ceramic edition with a blue rubber strap.
As for its technical side, it’s got everything you would expect — 4GB storage capacity, NFC for Android Pay, GPS, WiFi and the rest. But the TAG Heuer style is why you shell out the cash (in the $1,200 to $3,500 range) for this smartwatch.
3: Montblanc Summit 2
Why would anyone shell out a thousand bucks for a mid-range (okay, mid-range-plus) smartwatch? Montblanc answers the question nicely with its Summit 2. A sleek minimalistic 42-mm stainless steel case makes the timepiece look very much like a traditional watch, as does the sapphire glass over the display. Slip a calfskin strap on this smartwatch and you have one elegant accessory on your wrist. Perfect for the office and dress occasions, the watch is also good company on a casual weekend.
As for its technology, it’s good (maybe not $1,000 good, but good). The screen is sharp with a resolution of 390 x 390. The Wear OS operating system can nicely handle the latest apps, from fitness tracking to the handy World Timer that lets you see time zones across the world by rotating the crown. It’s also geared toward travelers with an included Travel Info app that gives you currency exchange, weather, and some helpful phrases for countries across the globe. So if the price doesn’t put you off (as you’re not getting a truly premier brand), a Summit 2 is a nice luxe-adjacent option.
4: Samsung Galaxy
Samsung has retooled its Gear S smartwatch with stunning results, offering a better looking, longer-lasting and more app-packed offering. And at a reasonable price! You can pick one up for under $400, with the cost varying by model and features. Two sizes, a 42-mm or 46-mm case, come in silver, midnight black and rose gold. With a circular face, metal case and traditional finishing, it looks very much like a conventional timepiece. This makes the watch quite versatile and pairs well with almost any ensemble short of formal wear.
When it comes to high tech, the Samsung Galaxy is all about the interface, compatible with both Android (5.0 and above) and iPhones (iOS 9 and later). The Galaxy is also nipping at Apple’s heels when it comes to health apps, notably with the Samsung Health package that offers dozens of workouts you can roll through with the rotating bezel. The 4G version allows you to use the watch essentially as a smartphone without the need for WiFi connectivity. For both price and technology, this one is hard to match.
5: Breitling Exospace
The Breitling Exospace B55 Connected has been on the scene for a few years and recently the Swiss watchmakers rolled out a Yachting edition aimed at sailing enthusiasts. Whichever version you choose, the Exospace is a good sporty choice with some great functionality.
First, we have to address the price. You are buying a Breitling so prepare to pay luxury watch prices. An earlier Exospace B55 model can set you back $4,000 and you have to shell out around $6,000 or more for the newer version. Once you get past the sticker shock, we can look at what you are paying for.
The titanium case, unidirectional rotating bezel and water resistance up to 100 meters are pure Breitling quality. Swiss luxury is evident in every detail, from the twin LCD screens on an otherwise traditional face to high-end crowns and pushers. As for technology, it can’t compete with Apple (nor does it try) but the Bluetooth connectivity to smartphones gives you a wide array of apps to work with.
Long gone are the days when only super geeks wore high-tech on their wrists. So embrace the future and get yourself a fine smartwatch today!