We list the best smartwatches set to launch in 2016, from Apple’s second-gen Watch to the latest fitness trackers and Android Wear devices.
It took a good couple of years, but we finally saw some decent smartwatch tech emerge at the end of 2015. Motorola’s latest Moto 360 watch was well-designed and responsive, while the Samsung Gear S2 impressed with its funky dial-based interface. Not forgetting Apple’s first foray into smartwatch territory with the rather attractive Apple Watch.
So, which wearables will be big in 2016? Here’s our pick of some of the more interesting ones.
Apple Watch 2
With the Apple Watch proving a big success in 2015 (apparently outselling every Android Wear smartwatch combined), the odds are strong that we’ll see an Apple Watch 2 in 2016.
Web whisperings point to a March 2016 launch for the Watch 2, with Apple revealing it alongside the new dinky 4-inch iPhone 6c and possibly an iPad Air 3. Obviously there are no concrete details, but you can expect another gorgeous and vibrant OLED screen as well as a Facetime camera for chatting with friends on the move.
Samsung Gear S2 Classic reboot
At CES 2016, Samsung unveiled two new models of its excellent Gear S2 Classic watch. This year you’ll be able to pick up the S2 in an 18-carat rose gold or platinum finish, giving it the gorgeous good looks it really deserves.
Functionality remains the same, so you get Samsung’s impressive Tizen OS which can be deftly controlled with the watch’s twistable dial. The new watches will hit the UK in the next two months.
Fitbit has been relatively quiet since releasing the Charge, but it’s coming back swinging in 2016 with the Fitbit Blaze, its first full-on smartwatch. All of the usual features such as a heart rate sensor, water resistance, sleep tracking and multi-sport tracking are present and correct, but the Blaze can also display notifications on its dinky colour screen (just 1.25-inches from corner to corner) and control your music. You’ll also get five days of battery life between charges, comparable to the Pebble Time.
If you want an affordable alternative to the Blaze, then check out the Withings Go. This simple rubbery smartwatch costs just fifty quid and boasts months of battery life on a single charge thanks to its e-ink display. Impressively it’s water resistant and can track your daily activities as well as your beauty sleep, with support for both iPhone and Android.
Huawei Watch Jewel/Elegant
We’re big fans of the Huawei Watch, which matches class and style with a great display and decent battery life. And like the Gear S2, Huawei’s smartwatch got a makeover at CES 2016, with new ‘Jewel’ and ‘Elegant’ models set to hit the UK early this year.
It’s business as usual as far as specs and features are concerned, but the Huawei Watch Jewel and Huawei Watch Elegant are built specifically for feminine wrists. They don’t come cheap (think $400 US upwards), but they sure look purdy.
Other smartwatches that could launch in 2016
We’re expecting to see loads of other smartphone sequels in 2016 too, from some of the biggest tech manufacturers. So brace yourself for a Moto 360 3, sequel to the seriously improved Moto 360 2015 edition, as well as an Asus Zenwatch 3 and more Gear watches from Samsung. Don’t be surprised to see a new Sony Smartwatch too, although the Japanese giant may take some time out from wrist wearables to concentrate on its VR tech instead.