If you’re looking for a high performing, stylish and efficient Wear OS smartwatch, it’ll be hard to beat the Fossil Gen 5.
The Fossil brand already has a strong reputation for quality smartwatches, and the Gen 5 lives up to that. Designed for all-purpose wear, it’s a particularly good choice for Android smartphone users thanks to the compatibility of the Wear operating system.
Perhaps its best feature is the display. Eye-catching and striking, it’s larger than the majority of other displays at 1.28in sq and with a 416 x 416 resolution and a 328 ppi pixel density. The face is easily customised and the watch has plenty of options to choose from, with more available as downloads.
The Snapdragon Wear 3100 chipset is not the most popular choice for Wear OS smartwatches but it does offer some extra features you can’t find anywhere else – such as a range of modes to preserve battery life and boost processing power. 1GB of RAM promises great performance.
NFC integration means you can pay contactless with Google Pay, and there is also built-in GPS, an inbuilt speaker and a heart rate sensor. The Gen 5 is water resistant to 3atm and even features a swim-proof speaker so you can take calls on the go and have Google Assistant talk to you anywhere.
The Fossil Gen 5 isn’t just bigger than many of its rivals at 44mm, it’s also pretty thick, at 12mm, and is aimed squarely at the male market. However, despite its size and weight, it’s a very good-looking watch and won’t fail to impress. There are three buttons which control this device, along with the rotating crown that allows you to scroll rapidly through the apps menu and options. There are also two other buttons which can be set as shortcuts, helping to make it very intuitive and user-friendly.
The Fitness Tracking
There’s nothing lacking for fitness enthusiasts. The integrated heart monitor will track your heart rate at all times while the inbuilt GPS is accurate and effective.
The main fitness tracking app is Google Fit which is compatible with both iOS and Android devices. It uses Heart Points and Move Minutes to track your performance, but for more in-depth tracking you can install third party apps.
What Are The Main Advantages?
- Water resistant to 3atm
- Stylish, comfortable design
- Inbuilt GPS
- 24/7 heartrate monitoring
- Fitness tracking capabilities for a range of activities
- User-friendly interface
- Compatible with third party apps
- Wear OS operating system
What Are The Main Disadvantages?
- Might be too bulky for small wrists
- The speaker isn’t the best
If you’re an iOS user you might want to opt for the Apple Watch Series 4 or 5 instead. Although more costly than the Gen 5, these Apple watches are a more practical choice since there are no compatibility issues with iPhones.
A good Android-compatible alternative is the Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 3. It has a wide range of fitness features and improved water resistance.
You’ll find it hard to choose a more dependable and solid smartwatch than the Fossil Gen 5. Although it isn’t cheap, it offers good value for money with stylish good looks and plenty of versatility in the form of interchangeable straps to suit different occasions. The battery-saving modes give it long life and the plethora of fitness features ensure that even dedicated sports lovers will be kept happy.
In short, if you need a good all-round watch that has aesthetic appeal paired with outstanding functionality, you won’t be disappointed by all that the Fossil Gen 5 has to offer.
How Do We Test Smartwatches
We’re here to ensure you’ve picked the right smartwatch on the market to suit your preferences and requirements. We know that everybody wants something different from their device, so that’s why we always test the different elements of every smartwatch, comparing them to help you to make a fully informed decision.
The first thing we check for you is the appearance, style and comfort of the watch. Does it look good? Can it be worn for casual or formal wear? Does it feel comfortable around the wrist? Next, we examine how functional it is. Can you easily read its display, even in strong light? How intuitive are its controls? Is it user-friendly or complex to understand?
We check the battery life as well as all of the integrated features and functions. We test the onboard fitness apps, to ensure that they are accurate and high performing. We also observe the effect on the watch’s performance while downloading third party apps, while making or receiving calls, texts and notifications, while playing music on the go, and while using the integrated GPS. Then we can determine just how well it managed to stand up to expectations.
Once we have all this information to hand, we’re able to collate it and write our review so you can decide whether this watch is really the best one to suit your needs or whether there is an alternative which would better meet your requirements.