If you’re looking to get a smartwatch you’ll almost certainly be considering an Apple Watch, and for good reason.
Apple’s Watch OS software is without a doubt the most developed wearable platform on the market, featuring an app ecosystem and UX that quite frankly puts most of the competition to shame.
What’s more, thanks to clever work from Apple, for once you don’t have to remortgage your home to get one. These days there are numerous Apple Watches on the market covering multiple price points and user cases.
While the added choice is awesome, for non-techies, it can make knowing which Apple Watch is best for their specific needs a little tricky. There’s no point paying for a top-end Apple Watch 6 if you just want to track your steps and control your music. Equally, underinvest and you may miss out on key features, like a battery saving always on display and health tracking ECG sensor.
Here to help make sure you get the right Apple Watch, we’ve created this guide detailing the best Apple Watches we’ve reviewed that are still on the market.
Every product on this list has been tested by an expert at Trusted Reviews. Each has been put through a series of tests to gauge its battery life, performance and features against its direct rivals’. The reviewer had to use each product as their primary smartwatch for at least four days before scoring it.
Related: Best iPhone
Apple Watch 6
The best flagship Apple Watch
Lovely new colours
- Very accurate fitness tracking
- Plenty of health features
The best smartwatch OS around
Sleep tracking lacks depth
- No big improvements to battery
- Minimal improvements over previous model
If you’re one of those people that needs to always have the very best of the best, then the Apple Watch 6 is the wearable for you.
Though it has a similar design to the SE and older Apple Watch 5, it does feature a few nifty upgrades. These include upgraded colour options, a few improvements to the UI and various other small refinements. But the biggest and most important upgrade is the new SpO2 sensor.
This is an advanced sensor that’s been missing on Apple Watches for quite some time, despite being common on competing trackers from the likes of Garmin and Fitbit. It lets the Apple Watch 6 track and use your blood oxygen level to offer more robust coaching, fitness and general health advice to its wearer.
With the Watch 5 retired, the 6 is also the only wearable in Apple’s library to feature a variable refresh rate screen. This has been a key selling point for Apple’s flagship wearables since it debuted on the 5, that lets it offer a top notch always-on display without killing battery life.
The combined package makes the Apple Watch 6 the best option for buyers looking for the absolute best of the best.
- Read our Apple Watch 6 review
Apple Watch SE
The best all-rounder
- Huge range of tracking features
- The best smartwatch OS around
Wide variety of straps available
No always-on display
Battery life still only really a day
If you don’t need a top end Apple Watch with advanced health / wellness tracking features, like an ECG, then the SE is the wearable to get.
It sits between the Apple Watch 6 and Apple Watch 3 as the middle child in Apple’s current line-up. While it doesn’t have the top notch always on display, ECG or SPO2 tracking tech of the Watch 6 it’s still a significant step up on the 3.
Highlights include a larger, brighter screen, more powerful processes, 40/44mm size options and fall detection functionality. The combination of factors make it the best option for most people.
- Read our Apple Watch SE review
Apple Watch 3
The best value Apple Watch
- Access to huge app ecosystem
Solid entry-level fitness tracking
Doesn’t have health/wellness tracking features of newer models
The Apple Watch 3 isn’t exactly new, but thanks to countless price cuts it’s now the most affordable smartwatch in Apple’s ecosystem, with the cheapest model selling for £199.
You can rapidly ramp up the cost if you add expensive straps and LTE to the mix, but even without these, the Apple Watch 3 remains one of the best smartwatches you’ll find at this price and the best value option for anyone on a very strict budget.
For your money you get a decent smartwatch, with access to WatchOS vast library of apps, plus enough fitness and health tracking options to keep most gym goers and joggers happy, though serious athletes will be better off looking elsewhere.
The only downside is that you’ll miss out on a few key features, like an always-on display, fall detection and the top dollar performance of Apple’s new wearable chips.
- Read our Apple Watch 3 review
Apple Watch alternatives
Apple Watches are one of multiple categories of wearables the team of experts at Trusted Labs test.
If you’ve not found an Apple Watch you’re happy with on this list checkout one of our other wearable best of guides using the below links.
- Our best smartwatch details all the best wearables you can get on both iOS and Android.
- Our best fitness trackers guide reveals all the latest and greatest wearables that will help you take your workout to the next level or get started on your road to healthier living.
- Best Fitbit details the best trackers from the ionic wearable maker.
- Best running watch lists the latest and greatest trackers for casual joggers and die hard marathon goers.
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