Get ready for more efficient wearables, at long last
Every time we look, it feels like Qualcomm is coming out with a new chip to power the latest Android phones — like the new Snapdragon we met a few weeks back. But for as frequently as we get a new smartphone SoC, the same cannot be said for the company's processors intended for wearables — it seems like an eternity has passed since it introduced the Snapdragon Wear 4100. Thankfully, a successor appears to be on the horizon, as Qualcomm shares a teaser for what can only be a next-generation wearable chip.
One UI Watch 4.5 is getting closer to public release beta by beta
Samsung has been on a roll with its One UI Watch beta program for the Galaxy Watch4. It went live in early June, and since then, the Korean giant has rolled out multiple beta builds to address the reported bugs and introduce further new enhancements. Earlier this week, Samsung also officially announced One UI Watch 4.5 for the Galaxy Watch4 and detailed some of its new features. Hot on the heels of the announcement, the company has seeded the fourth beta firmware for the Galaxy Watch4 series.
There are several great deals to check out on fitness watches for every kind of athlete
Prime Day is still going, and deals are still raining down the sky. If you're not done with yesterday's spending spree, you can still get yourself amazing discounts on some of your favorite tech. If you bought a smartphone yesterday and want to pair it with a brand-new smartwatch, there are also a lot of offers to check. Some people swear by Garmin's offerings, which are amazing for fitness tracking purposes, but if the price they command has put you off in the past, you might find them a tad more approachable today.
It's not the best smartwatch, but it gets the job done
Mobvoi's TicWatch E3 is built on top of Qualcomm Snapdragon Wear 4100 Platform, which means it will eventually see an update to Wear OS 3.0. So at $140, you get a lot of smartwatch for your money during this deep discount during Prime Day. Having reviewed the smartwatch late last year, I can personally confirm it's a solid device, especially as an entry point into Wear OS.
It's slated to launch later this year
In early June, Samsung launched the One UI Watch 4.5 beta program for the Galaxy Watch4 series. Based on Wear OS 3.5, the beta detailed several new features coming to Samsung's smartwatches, including new watch faces, a tweaked keyboard interface, and improved fitness tracking. Following a few beta releases and an exhaustive leak, the Korean giant has officially announced One UI Watch 4.5 and some of its new features.
This full-fledged fitness tracker is a mere $45
Not everyone needs a fully-fledged smartwatch on their wrist. Not only are they expensive, but notification after notification on your phone can lead to a frustrating, distraction-filled experience. Thankfully, modern fitness trackers do nearly everything you'd want from a smartwatch without any of the annoyances and at a fraction of the price. And while Fitbit might lead this product category, Amazon's Halo lineup has made some serious leaps over the last couple of years.
These affordable fitness trackers from Amazon and Fitbit look the same but have very different approaches
You wouldn't usually associate Amazon with fitness tracking, but the company has managed to change this perception with its budget fitness tracker. The Halo View is Amazon's second fitness band focusing on holistic health rather than just your workouts and step counts. The Inspire 2 works as a relatively affordable entry point into Fitbit's ecosystem that now also includes a subscription-based Premium offering. Amazon is undercutting that with its own paid fitness service, but will a lower price alone be enough to convince buyers to go for the Halo View instead of the Inspire 2?
Three models have been spotted on Samsung’s own website
The Samsung Galaxy Watch5 is expected to land alongside the Galaxy Z Fold4, Galaxy Z Flip4, and various other Samsung gadgets in the coming months. Leaks have started pouring in with us seeing the first photography of the upcoming smartwatch last week. Now, we’ve also seen the model numbers for all three Galaxy Watch5 models, and they’re directly from Samsung’s website.
All the juiciest details about the upcoming Galaxy Watch
Samsung makes some of the best smartwatches you can buy right now, and we're big fans of the Galaxy Watch4 and Galaxy Watch4 Classic — but having been released in August 2021, they're nearly a year old at this point. Although Samsung's hard at work on a new set of watches in the rumored Galaxy Watch5 series, we've already heard plenty about the new generation. Interested in what Samsung's got cooking for its next wearables? Read on to find out.
The Watch5 Pro looks premium in new leaked renders
Samsung currently dominates the Wear OS market, all thanks to the excellent Galaxy Watch4 running Wear OS 3. With the watch's first anniversary fast approaching, many users are now looking forward to the launch of its successor—the Galaxy Watch5. Leaks have already revealed pretty much everything about the wearable, including the death of the handy rotating bezel and the addition of a new Pro model to the lineup. Despite all the rumors, a lack of Galaxy Watch5 renders meant we didn't know much about the upcoming smartwatch pair's design. Now, high-resolution GIFs of the watch have been shared online, revealing the design from all angles.
The band doesn't feature a screen to try and reduce distractions
Looking to buy a fitness tracker on a budget? In the US, Fitbit leads the pack with some of the best fitness trackers, but its products aren't the most affordable. Amazon also has a fitness wearable—the Halo Band—that can track your sleep, heart rate, steps, and even the sounds you make. Compared to other products in the market, the wearable takes a low-tech angle as it doesn't feature a screen. The idea is this will reduce distractions in your everyday life. If that's not a deterrent, you can grab Amazon's Halo Band at its lowest price yet of $45—a massive $55 off its usual $100 price tag.
Details on the wearable's international availability are still pending
Xiaomi is a well-established name in the wearables market, particularly across Asia and Europe, with models like the Mi Band 6 impressing us with incredibly low prices and solid feature sets. We've heard rumors about a Mi Band 7 Pro since at least May, most recently with a teaser just last week detailing its imminent arrival. Right on schedule, Xiaomi has unveiled its latest wearable, alongside the new Xiaomi 12S Ultra with its much-hyped Leica camera.
It seems like the companion app experience is in the court of the OEMs
Wear OS 3 was announced at Google's I/O developer conference in May 2021, but barring a few Samsung watches and the stupid-expensive Montblanc Summit 3, very few watches actually run the update today. Fossil is one of the brands playing catch-up right now, with several of its watches set to get the big update later this year, and we've learned that to prep for that, the Fossil Smartwatches app is receiving a complete overhaul.
While Huawei is moving on with HarmonyOS, Honor’s latest watch feels stuck in limbo
Honor only recently split from its parent company, Huawei, back in 2020. The newly independent firm is working hard on building on its legacy while also moving forward on its own. However, losing Huawei's enormous research and development capabilities is a huge blow, and it’s one Honor needs to overcome before it can truly stand on its own. The company has already proven that it has the right building blocks set in place with devices like the Magic4 Pro, but it still has a lot of catching up to do. This becomes clearest when we look at some of Honor’s latest wearables, like the Watch GS 3.
Testers are working out Wear OS 3.5 on the Galaxy Watch4
Samsung started up the first One UI Watch beta program for the Galaxy Watch4 last month. Up until then, the program was only limited to testing upcoming One UI releases for its high-end smartphones and foldables. One UI 4.5 will be a significant update for the Galaxy Watch4 that bumps the underlying Wear OS version to 3.5 and introduce several new watch faces and enhancements. After rolling out two beta releases last month, Samsung has kick-started July with the third One UI 4.5 beta build for the smartwatch.
The Pro version resembles a smartwatch a lot more than a fitness tracker
Xiaomi has been busy with fitness bands lately, and it opened the year with the launch of the Xiaomi S1 and the S1 Active, followed by the long-awaited May reveal of the Mi Band 7. Recent evidence suggested that a Pro version of the Mi Band 7 was also in the works, and now, Xiaomi has officially confirmed that the Mi Band 7 Pro will be unveiled in China on July 4.
It turns out previous restrictions might be from Samsung, not Google
We're just a few weeks away from the launch of the first non-Samsung smartwatch running Wear OS 3. It's been a long time coming, with the Galaxy Watch4 having held a monopoly on Google's latest wearable upgrade — and the best smartwatch crown — for nearly a year. While it's frustrating for fans of stock Wear OS to have waited a year for a substantial update, there's a silver lining hidden with Montblanc's latest smartwatch: it'll actually work with iPhones.
This feature is rolling out in this month's Play services update ahead of the Pixel Watch launch
Google first announced Fast Pair for Android 6.0+ devices in 2017. The proprietary standard makes pairing Bluetooth devices to your phone a one-step process. After slow industry adoption, the feature has made a comeback of sorts over the last couple of years with rapid improvements and broader device compatibility. In 2020, Fast Pair was upgraded to find lost wireless earbuds and check on the battery level of connected devices. Then, at CES 2022, Google announced Fast Pair is coming to Chromebooks, Android TVs, and smart home gadgets for easy pairing. Adding to that list, the big G is now bringing Fast Pair to Wear OS devices.
It's a wearable you can wear for more than one day
The modern smartwatch isn't everyone's cup of tea. Sure, wearables are packed with features, but that's why a traditionalist — or simply someone looking for a more minimal experience — may not like them. On top of that, the limited battery life typically offered by most models can take some getting used to, frustrating those that aren't looking to charge another device every night. That's where Fossil's not-so-smart Hybrid lineup comes in, bridging the gap between regular watches and smartwatches by offering the best of both worlds. Today, this lineup is expanding with another hybrid offering with the "Gen 6" moniker.
Fitbit's latest premium feature supercharges sleep analysis and compares you to one of six animals
Fitbit's wearables are among the best fitness trackers and have been offering sleep tracking for over a decade now. The collected data is analyzed and a score is assigned based on how well you slept last night. Then, there's Smart Wake which smartly wakes you up during the optimal stage of your sleep cycle so that you don't feel groggy. It can even tell you if you are snoring too much in your sleep. The Google-owned company is now introducing a premium sleep tracking feature called Sleep Profile which offers a "longitudinal analysis of your sleep pattern." The feature aims to improve your long-term sleeping habits by analyzing your sleep style and pattern, and comparing it to one of six animals.