The best Apple Watch alternatives you can buy

The Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 and Garmin Venu 2 lying flat on a table.

Jimmy Westenberg / Android Authority

Left to right: Samsung Galaxy Watch 4, Garmin Venu 2

Buying the right Apple Watch alternative

Right off the bat, we should highlight that there’s no genuine replacement for the Apple Watch. Apple’s wearable will naturally be your best bet if you own an iPhone. That being said, the likes of Garmin, Samsung, and Fitbit provide plenty of fitness and health tracking perks.

On that note, the Apple Watch Series 7 offers several health-tracking benefits over the Apple Watch SE, including blood oxygen monitoring, ECG smarts, and a more durable lens. That said, the SE is much cheaper. You should consider this pricing structure and the watches’ feature sets when shopping for either — and especially alternatives. Notably, if you own an Android phone but are seriously considering jumping over to Apple’s ecosystem for the Apple Watch benefits, the below alternatives are also for you.


The best Apple Watch alternatives

Apple Watch Series 7 alternatives

  • The Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 is the best Apple Watch Series 7 alternative. Running Wear OS 3, the watch brings stellar fitness tracking features, a slick design, and great software.
  • The Garmin Venu 2 is the best Apple Watch Series 7 alternative for fitness. It’s more health-focused than its Samsung counterpart and supports iPhones, too.
  • The Fitbit Versa 3 is the most affordable alternative to the Apple Watch Series 7. If you aren’t seeking the advanced health features of the Series 7 but are interested in stellar base fitness tracking support, the Versa 3 is a good shout.

Apple Watch SE alternatives

  • The Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 is also the best Apple Watch SE alternative. Specifically, the smaller 40mm model comes in cheaper than Apple’s budget smartwatch and includes the features of its larger sibling, too.
  • The Garmin Vivoactive 4 is the best Garmin alternative to the Watch SE. It is pricier, but it’s a more focused wearable for active users packing much better battery life.
  • The Huawei Band 6 is the best affordable Apple Watch SE alternative. Huawei’s surprise hit has few flaws, and those that are present are made negligible by its comparatively low price.

Samsung Galaxy Watch 4: The best Apple Watch Series 7 alternative

Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 standing on its own

Eric Zeman / Android Authority

Samsung Galaxy Watch 4

Samsung’s newest smartwatch series is stellar. It’s the best Wear OS watch you can buy right now, largely because it’s the only Wear OS 3 device on sale. But even beyond this software advantage, both the standard and Classic models pack plenty of health tracking features. Leading that particular bouquet is a body composition monitor, something that no other smartwatch has at the moment. Wear OS 3, with One UI Watch running on top, also brings an intuitive user experience with the platform’s array of supported apps.

A few things don’t make the Galaxy Watch 4 a true Apple Watch alternative, though. The fact that it’s not compatible with iOS is the first big strike. GPS performance is pretty lackluster, while some features are also exclusive to Samsung smartphone owners.

samsung galaxy watch 4 44mm green

Samsung Galaxy Watch 4

Samsung’s best smartwatch, now with Wear OS

Samsung and Google combined forces to improve the software situation with smartwatches on Android. The result is the new Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 and Galaxy Watch 4 Classic, running the new, co-developed Wear OS. The standard Galaxy Watch 4 is for the sportier crowd, while the Watch 4 Classic is for those who’d like a watch they can wear to the office.

samsung galaxy watch 4 classic black

Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 Classic

The classiest smartwatch Samsung has to offer

If you’re looking for a high-end follow-up to Samsung’s Galaxy Watch 3, look no further. Now with Wear OS on board, the Galaxy Watch 4 Classic will be perfect for your trip to the office or a night out.

Pros

  • Classy, durable designs
  • Multiple size options
  • Wear OS 3 is all-around good
  • Large models have decent battery life
  • Improved heart rate sensor
  • Useful body composition metrics

Cons

  • No solid software update commitments from Google
  • No Google Assistant support
  • Slow, slow charging
  • Poor GPS performance
  • Sleep tracking needs tweaking
  • Small models have short battery life

Check out our full review to learn more about the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4.

Garmin Venu 2: The best Apple Watch Series 7 alternative for fitness

garmin venu 2 review on wrist running stats

Jimmy Westenberg / Android Authority

The Venu 2 is a smartwatch better attuned to the health-conscious crowd. Buyers get a completely overhauled software experience with the Venu 2 that’s buoyed by its vibrant OLED screen. It features excellent GPS accuracy, even more music storage for those who prefer taking their tunes with them, and excellent background health and sleep tracking. Garmin’s legacy features, like Body Battery, are also included.

However, the Venu 2 isn’t perfect. Battery life is better than the Apple Watch Series 7, but it can be erratic when you start turning on all of its sensors. Unlike the Galaxy Watch 4, the Venu 2 does play nice with iPhones, but it lacks some Android-only features. The Venu 2 is also the same price as the Series 7.

Garmin Venu 2 press image

Garmin Venu 2

Garmin’s new mid-range multisport watch

If you liked the original Garmin Venu, you’re in for a treat with the Venu 2. It comes in two sizes, has lots of new features, and refines many of Garmin’s existing health tracking modes to make an all-around more comprehensive wearable.

Pros

  • Now comes in two sizes
  • Crisp AMOLED display
  • Accurate fitness, sleep, and health tracking
  • Excellent GPS accuracy
  • Health Snapshot is useful
  • More music storage

Cons

  • Battery life can be finicky
  • Uneven heart rate sensor data
  • High price tag

Check out our full review to learn more about the Garmin Venu 2.

Fitbit Versa 3: The best Fitbit alternative to the Apple Watch Series 7

A Fitbit Versa 3 displays a number of apps stored on the device including Starbucks, Spotify, Deezer, and Pandora.

Kaitlyn Cimino / Android Authority

Finally, Fitbit’s relatively affordable smartwatch entry is also worth a mention. Although the Versa 3 launched in 2020, it remains a viable health-focused smartwatch. In fact, its age counts in its favor, as it often finds itself on deal listings. Sure, it’s not the Fitbit with the most advanced array of sensors — that distinction belongs to the Fitbit Sense — but it covers all the necessary bases. It packs Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa support, onboard music storage, and onboard GPS. You’ll lose Apple Pay support, but you’ll gain Fitbit Pay.

As a tradeoff for its lower price, the Versa 3 lacks standout tracking features and sensors. Unlike the Sense and Series 7, it lacks an ECG. Fitbit’s app offering is also far less impressive than Apple’s.

Fitbit Versa 3 Smartwatch

Fitbit Versa 3

One of the best smartwatches for most Android users

If you’re looking for the best all-around smartwatch at a pretty good price, you’re likely looking for the Fitbit Versa 3. Fitbit’s cheaper flagship smartwatch sports standalone GPS, an accurate heart rate sensor, and plenty of nice smartwatch features.

Pros

  • Decent battery life
  • Pretty accurate health tracking
  • Built-in GPS
  • Google Assistant and Alexa support
  • Speaker with phone call support
  • Good price

Cons

  • Very small app library
  • Onboard music limited to two services
  • The capacitive button isn’t ideal
  • Proprietary charging cable

Check out our full review to learn more about the Fitbit Versa 3.

Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 (40mm): The best Apple Watch SE alternative

Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 Modern Minimalist Face

Kaitlyn Cimino / Android Authority

We’ve already covered the Galaxy Watch 4’s strengths and weaknesses above, but something we didn’t touch on is its price. While the Apple Watch SE targets buyers on a budget, it can’t quite crack the sub-$250 bracket. The smallest Galaxy Watch 4 (40mm dial) starts at $249, making it a viable alternative to both Apple Watch models.

Again, if you own an Apple Watch, you will need to consider another device. The smaller Galaxy Watch 4 doesn’t quite have the battery endurance to match its larger sibling, either. But if you own an Android phone and are considering buying an iPhone just for the Apple Watch, consider getting a 40mm Galaxy Watch 4 instead.

samsung galaxy watch 4 44mm green

Samsung Galaxy Watch 4

Samsung’s best smartwatch, now with Wear OS

Samsung and Google combined forces to improve the software situation with smartwatches on Android. The result is the new Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 and Galaxy Watch 4 Classic, running the new, co-developed Wear OS. The standard Galaxy Watch 4 is for the sportier crowd, while the Watch 4 Classic is for those who’d like a watch they can wear to the office.

Check out our full review to learn more about the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4.

Garmin Vivoactive 4: The best Apple Watch SE alternative for fitness

garmin vivoactive 4 review display weather

The Garmin Vivoactive 4 is an excellent smartwatch if you’re putting fitness and GPS tracking performance first. Battery life is excellent, lasting a week between charges. Buyers also get a host of legacy Garmin tracking smarts, from hydration tracking and sweat-loss estimate to upgraded SpO2 sensors and excellent music playback support.

However, the Vivoactive 4 isn’t without its flaws. The transflective screen is great for efficiency but falls well short of the Apple Watch SE’s visual fidelity. The watch is by no means cheap, either. You can regularly find it for under $300, but Garmin still asks for more than Apple.

Garmin Vivoactive 4

Garmin Vivoactive 4

Last-gen tech at a reduced price

The Vivoactive 4 is Garmin’s middle-of-the-road multisport watch. It’s a great option for outdoor enthusiasts, especially if you don’t need the Venu’s OLED display.

Pros

  • Garmin Pay support is convenient
  • Music storage is standard
  • Week-long battery life
  • Unique breathwork exercises
  • Accurate fitness and health tracking
  • Useful and accurate sleep tracking

Cons

  • It can be expensive, even in 2021
  • Heart rate accuracy can be off with high-intensity workouts

Check out our full review to learn more about the Garmin Vivoactive 4.

Huawei Band 6: The best cheap Apple Watch SE alternative

Huawei Band 6 review watch face on wrist 1

Jimmy Westenberg / Android Authority

If the price is the primary reason you’re considering an Apple Watch SE alternative, look no further than the Huawei Band 6. It’s more of a pure fitness tracker than a smartwatch, but it does include a large display, a 10-day battery life, and a ridiculous number of workout tracking modes. Like the Apple Watch SE, it cuts down on bulk, but it still feels excellent on the wrist. Blood oxygen monitoring at this price point is another bonus.

Of course, the Huawei Band 6 does fall short of the SE in certain areas. It lacks onboard GPS smarts, while its straps are not interchangeable. Its heart rate sensor does leave plenty to be desired during workouts, too. Overall, it’s a worthwhile alternative if your budget is extremely limited.

huawei band 6 press image

Huawei Band 6

Huawei’s entry-level fitness tracker

Looking for a Mi Band 6 alternative? The Huawei Band 6 might be what you’re looking for. It has 96 workout modes, all-day blood oxygen monitoring, and a battery that can last up to two weeks.

Pros

  • Comfortable, roomy form factor
  • Great value
  • Solid battery life
  • Lots of workout modes
  • All-day SpO2 monitoring

Cons

  • Limited smartwatch features and apps
  • Non-removable straps
  • Heart rate sensor struggles during workouts

Check out our full review to learn more about the Huawei Band 6.

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