Back to the future
With the ball about to drop on the decade everyone is excited to see what the next generation of new smartwatches look like. The wearable tech market is incredibly competitive and consumers are the ones getting the benefits. There are some incredible features packed into some gorgeous devices.
Here’s a look at some of the most eagerly-anticipated smartwatches coming in 2020.
Garmin Fenix 6x Pro Solar
We know and love Garmins for their GPS reliability and accuracy. Garmin is the brand of choice for hardcore athletes, both indoor and outdoor. And the Fenix range hasn’t disappointed with features like topographical maps, music, and oxygen saturation monitors.
The Garmin Fenix 6x Pro Solar was launched in October of this year. So, it’s just about got a head start and fans have received it very well so far. Hardly surprising, as this is Garmin’s first solar-powered offering.
The design is thinner and better looking than any of the other Fenix models. The sixth-generation is packed with features previously missing. This includes the ability to store 36GB of music, better GPS than ever before, contactless payments and new sensors to pick up on information such as a fall or the weather. It’s a seriously clever piece of kit that has the potential to save your life. It’ll tell you health measurements in painfully accurate detail.
The best thing is the battery life. Thanks to solar power, you’ll get 21 days of performance. If you think that’s impressive, in smartwatch mode you can get 24 days.
The 6x Pro Solar is the most expensive, coming in at $1,150 (£850). The Fenix 6s Pro, however, can be picked up for $700 (£500) and has the same amount of storage onboard for music.
Apple Watch Series 6
Apple fans will have to wait until September for this one. There are predictions on everything from the name to the features though as it’s anticipated that it won’t break the mould with the numbering system, it’s referred to as Series 6.
The advancements expected will be around the fitness features including sleep tracking and more accurate tracking for activities like running. Thanks to a stray tweet, we know there’s been some development on a sleep app. Ideally, there will be some improvements in battery life. The addition of always-on has caused some controversy amongst users as to whether or not this feature saves or drains the battery.
As there was little difference in design between the 4 and 5, there’s hope for some drastic changes for the Series 6. There’s talk of a circular display, which could be a wild rumour, but now Apple’s lead designer has left the building, who knows? There has been a patent approved for a round face, so September might bring a surprise for us all.
Other rumoured features include a camera for FaceID and the ability to use TouchID. Furthermore, blood pressure and blood glucose measurements are also expected.
It’s certainly fun to speculate, and it’s suspected this smartwatch will be the smartest device ever released.
Google Pixel Watch
Google has been so busy providing WearOS (Android Wear) to other devices that it never stopped to make its own smartwatch – until now, we hope.
Google has teased the market for years with potential release dates for the Pixel watch. Now, it could be any time between March and October 2020.
One highly discussed rumour was a feature named ‘Blackghost’ which saw the watch listen out for and respond to voice commands with little drainage of the battery. It’s not something currently available, but expecting to use Google Assist isn’t outrageous. It’s anticipated you’ll be able to ask questions without having to use anything but your voice.
Seeing as WearOS is mostly Android smartphone compatible, there’s a third-party app expectation that the Pixel watch will work seamlessly with things like WhatsApp, Messenger and Uber. Naturally, it’s expected to have Gmail, maps and Google Pay.
Fitness and health tracking should be a feature as well as the smart functions. A heart rate monitor, sleep tracking, GPS, barometer, altimeter and accelerometers are all anticipated for accurate data about your movements.
There have been no concrete links about the design, so we can only look to the existing Pixel range and see what 2020 brings.
Seeing as this is Google’s first attempt at their own smartwatch, it’s hard to guess the price it’ll be marketed at. Looking at competitors Apple and Samsung, it’s likely to fall between $300- $400.
Microsoft Surface Watch
We’re set to welcome Microsoft into the smartwatch world in 2020.
We all know and love their laptops and PCs but they’re not performing as well in the smartphone market.
It’s believed the Surface watch will run on Windows OS with its Surface siblings. Odds are on a square design with a durable screen. It’s aimed at business folk in terms of design and function, with selling points such as long battery life and cloud storage.
Rumours have been going around since before Apple released the Apple Watch. In 2012 a patent application was released that saw a small device held in a frame, mounted on a strap. The device was navigated using the display and had capabilities that allowed it to swap data with another device.
Given that was eight years ago, and considering how well Microsoft keep new products under wraps until release dates, who knows what the Surface Watch could do.
New Smartwatches Summary
Much of these new smartwatches for 2020 releases are speculation, fuelled by expert opinion and a few information leaks here and there. We know for certain we’ll see sales of the Garmin Fenix range continue to soar, given the initial welcome it’s already had. Apple’s new smartwatches will have people camping outside the stores in late August 2020 for the Series 6 and it appears there’s a race between Microsoft and Google for the latest high-tech smartwatch.
We can only wait and see!