With the rise in popularity of smartwatches, more people are opting for these devices over traditional watches due to their extensive functionalities. Smartwatches are essentially wearable mini-computers that can synchronize with your smartphone and track various activities, making them a valuable tool for those with active lifestyles. But are they worth the investment? Let’s explore.

What is a Smartwatch? What Does it Do?

A smartwatch is a digital wristwatch equipped with a small chip, enabling it to perform many functions similar to a smartphone. Beyond telling time, a smartwatch can synchronize with your smartphone to display notifications and alerts, including text messages, calls, calendar events, alarms, and social media updates.

Types of Smartwatches

There are two main types of smartwatches: general-purpose and specialty or specific-use.

General-Purpose Smartwatches

General-purpose smartwatches are designed for everyday use and heavily depend on smartphone synchronization. These devices offer standard features such as app support, media management, GPS, and fitness tracking.

  • App Support: A smartwatch’s utility is enhanced by the number of apps it supports. For example, if you frequently use apps for weather updates, news, or social media, your smartwatch should provide access to these same apps.
  • Media Management: Most smartwatches allow you to control media playback, such as music on Spotify, directly from your wrist. This feature is particularly useful during workouts when handling a smartphone can be inconvenient.
  • Fitness Tracking: Smartwatches often include integrated heart rate monitors, pedometers, accelerometers, and tools for monitoring calorie consumption and sleep patterns.
  • GPS: Built-in GPS in smartwatches helps track your location and provide location-specific alerts like traffic updates, making it an excellent tool for outdoor activities.

Specialty or Specific-Use Smartwatches

Specialty smartwatches are designed for specific activities and can function independently from smartphones. Examples include:

  • Hiking Smartwatches: Equipped with GPS navigation, weather forecasting, vital tracking, and extended battery life.
  • Diving Smartwatches: Feature depth indicators, temperature counters, and other diving-related measurements, and are waterproof to withstand underwater pressure.
  • Activity-Specific Watches: Designed for flying, boating, fishing, and other unique hobbies, offering specialized features to enhance these activities.

Should You Get a Smartwatch?

The decision to buy a smartwatch depends on your needs and lifestyle. Affordable options are now available, with many models priced under $50. To determine if a smartwatch is worth the investment, consider the following benefits:

Benefits of a Smartwatch

  • Quick Access to Calls and Messages: Smartwatches allow you to receive calls and reply to messages instantly, even when your hands are full or you’re engaged in activities that make using a smartphone inconvenient.
  • Instant Social Media Notifications: Stay updated with social media notifications without frequently checking your phone. A quick glance at your wrist can help you stay connected and informed.
  • Convenience During Exercise: Avoid carrying a bulky phone during workouts. Use your smartwatch to listen to music, track your activity, and stay connected without worrying about damaging your phone.
  • NFC Payments: Some smartwatches with NFC capability allow you to make payments directly from your wrist, providing convenience when you’re on the go without your wallet or phone.
  • Fitness and Health Tracking: Smartwatches offer comprehensive fitness tracking, helping you monitor steps, sitting time, sleep quality, and calorie burn. This data can be vital for maintaining and improving your health.
  • Smart Home Integration: Control your smart home devices, such as lights, plugs, and locks, directly from your smartwatch, enhancing the convenience of managing your smart home ecosystem.
  • Safety Features: Many smartwatches come with emergency support features, like detecting accidents and notifying emergency services if you become unresponsive. Specialty smartwatches can also offer navigation and monitoring features for activities like scuba diving and fishing.


Smartwatches offer a range of features that can significantly enhance your daily life and activities. From fitness tracking and media management to smart home integration and emergency support, these devices provide numerous benefits that can make them a worthwhile investment. Assess your lifestyle and needs to determine if a smartwatch is right for you, and enjoy the convenience and functionality it brings to your wrist.