Smartwatch or Fitness Band – Which Should You Go For?

Looking for something to keep a track of your fitness stats, and maybe even let you get away from your phone a bit? Well, you have two broad choices – a fitness band or a smartwatch.

Both are designed to keep an eye on your fitness data – heart rate, calories burned, steps taken and so on. And both also bring a certain amount of smartness quotient with them – you can see mails, messages, control music, and in some cases, even control phone calls from them. But which of them suits you better? Let’s work it out for you:

Want something that looks good? The watch rocks
In terms of sheer design and appearance, a smartwatch comfortably beats a fitness tracker. A fitness tracker is like a small bracelet on your wrist whereas a smartwatch, as its name indicates, brings in a wristwatch-like appearance. You get more fancy straps, more watch faces, and a much larger and more colourful display. You just want something no one would notice? The band is great. Want people to see your wrist? The smartwatch wins. Easily.

You want it mainly for fitness? The band works better
If you are looking for something that is mainly going to track your fitness, then perhaps the band is a better idea. It is small and compact enough to record most data and is more than reasonably accurate. Whether the display is big or not does not make that much of difference. Mind you, if you want to really track your fitness only on your device and not refer to a phone, the watch’s bigger display is a better option.

Want a phone-like device? The watch it is
But what if you want a device that can sort of be like your phone – letting you see and read notifications, check weather, look and respond to messages, and maybe even handle calls? Ah, then the watch is a much better option. The bigger display gives you more space to read messages (fitness band displays are just too tiny) and that is critical if you are looking for phone-like functions on your wrist. You can even navigate a city using your watch! You can actually put your phone away and totally depend on your watch in many cases.

Want apps? Watch it!
If you are the type that likes to install and run software on your wrist, the smartwatch is a much better option. Most smartbands do not let you install third-party applications or software. A smartwatch like the Apple Watch or an Android Wear watch on the other hand will not only put watch versions of phone apps on your wrist, but will also give you the option to use apps totally designed for watches. You could actually play a game on your watch!

Hate recharging the battery? Band on
Fitness bands have smaller displays and generally have battery lives that run into weeks and sometimes even months. Their chargers are also mostly smaller and easier to carry. Some smartwatches do have battery lives of a few weeks, but most are well below the battery lives ofthe bands. Something like the Apple Watch has to be charged almost every other day. And that is generally because of the much larger display and the fact that you do much more on them. Most smartwatches also have larger chargers which can be inconvenient to carry.

Tight budget? Band wins
In general, fitness bands come with far lower price tags than smartwatches. In most cases, a fitness band would be priced at less than half of the price of a smartwatch from the same brand. If budgets are tight, this is a no-brainer – go for a fitness band.

So there you are. The watch gets you more viewing space and generally far more functions and apps. The band is more spare and Spartan and mainly designed for fitness. Which one is for you really depends on your requirements.

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