What Smartwatch is Best for Outdoor Activities?
Garmin Fenix 6 vs Suunto 9
Firstly, if you are keen to get hold of a smartwatch that can go outdoors and track what you do, then you need one with features such as GPS, heart rate monitor, altitude detector and a range of data collection that can be used to improve your performance over time. Getting a watch that can do all of this, that can be comfortable to wear, and that looks the part can certainly be difficult in the saturated smartwatch market. However, we have compared the Garmin Fenix 6 with the Suunto 9 as we believe that these two watches are great choices for people who love the outdoors.
What Do the Fenix 6 and Suunto 9 Models Look Like?
The Suunto 9 is not only a good watch, but it has been made out of good quality materials and is easy to read with a large, clear screen. Furthermore, the buttons are simple to use and will navigate you through the watch functions with ease.
The Fenix 6 is much smaller and is certainly not the prettiest smartwatch you will ever see! The screen is easy to read with important information on view at all times. The buttons are not as easy to use as on the Suunto and can even stick when you are trying to use them.
How Comfy Are the Fenix 6 and Suunto 9 Models?
With any big watch comes the issue of comfort, and the Suunto 9 has this issue; it’s huge and is prone to get caught on things. Although, the strap is comfy, you will need to position it further up your arm than you would expect in order to use the heart rate monitor, and this means it will catch on sleeves constantly. It may look great, but it is not a comfortable wear.
The Fenix 6 is a normal size, and this certainly helps the watch to provide a great fit on your wrist. It is a snug fit that allows you to monitor your heart rate without having to move the watch and the strap is hinged so that it can fit a range of wrist sizes.
What is the Screen Like On the Fenix 6 and Suunto 9 Models?
Both watches have LCD screens that claim to be good in the outdoors. However, the screen on the Fenix 6 is far superior. It has a clear view, and this is only enhanced by the backlight function. The screen resolution is great, and you will be able to use it wherever you find yourself.
The Suunto 9 has a touch screen, but it’s not easy to use, and the slow response from the screen makes it very frustrating to use! When outside the screen is difficult to read, and if it gets wet, it is hard to use.
How Long Does the Battery Last on the Fenix 6 and Suunto 9 Models?
The battery on the Suunto is great with around a 30-hour max when using all the features it offers. Suunto claims that there is up to 120 hours of use, but this is without the GPS feature turned on. The Fenix 6 battery also offers around 30 hours of battery life with GPS on.
This means that you can look forward to a weekend trip to the outdoors without worrying about charging as long as you remember to switch the GPS off when you don’t need it!
How Good Is the User Interface On the Fenix 6 and Suunto 9 Models?
The Suunto 9 doesn’t offer much when it comes to the interface of their watch. You have very limited selections when it comes to personalising the watch face and menu. The menu itself lacks intuition and can be very clunky to use, and this is then compounded by the slow touch screen.
The Fenix 6 is fully customisable with many watch faces to choose from, and it allows you to choose the widgets that are best suited to the way you want to use the watch. The menu is easy to access, and because it is button led, it is better than the Suunto 9’s slow touch screen.
How Easy Is It to Connect the Fenix 6 and Suunto 9 Models To Phones and Computers?
Interestingly, Suunto has two different phone apps, but it is advised that you use the new Suunto app over the older Movescount app. The Suunto app looks good but doesn’t offer the data you’d want to access; for example, the watch will tell you much more about your sleep habits than the app can. It is also difficult to connect the watch to the phone and can take a lot of fiddling around to get it connected when you want to use it.
The Garmin app makes up for in information for what it lacks in design. It is not pretty like the Suunto app, but you can access a wide range of data directly from your phone whenever you want to. The watch and phone are easily connected, and it syncs without any hassle at all so that you can see your progress in real-time. You can even link the app to other third-party apps, making it easier to share your data in one go.
It’s clear that the Fenix 6 is the winner by a large distance! It is clear and easy to use, has many useful functions and is comfy on your wrist. It may not look as good as the Suunto 9, but what it lacks in aesthetics it makes up for with substance.
The Suunto 9 is a good looking watch with lots of promise, but the low-grade touchscreen and poor software mean that it will not track what you need when you need it. However, with a few small tweaks, this could be a smartwatch that rivals the competition.