Unlike the smartphone world, smartwatches aren’t limited to two major operating systems. While Google and Apple stake a claim to a large portion of the wearable OS market, the likes of Samsung, Garmin, and Fitbit have all developed their OSes.
While Samsung and Garmin offer watches with Wear OS, most manufacturers generally stick to their self-developed platforms. With that in mind, what OS will your next smartwatch have onboard? Be sure to vote in our poll below.
There are several reasons to dismiss or consider a particular smartwatch OS. Apple’s watchOS, for instance, commands a third of the smartwatch market, offer a plethora of health tracking smarts and a wealth of app support. However, the Apple Watch remains limited to iPhone users.
As for Google’s Wear OS, version 2 is dated, starved of development and falling further behind in battery optimization, but still features on several smartwatches. With the help of Samsung, Google’s Wear OS 3 does bring several improvements, but it too lacks the endurance to compete with other OSes.
See also: The best smartwatches you can buy
Then there are the minnows. Although Google now owns Fitbit, the latter still runs its own OS on its trackers. Samsung’s Galaxy Watch 3 series and older models still use Tizen, while most Garmin watches run its eponymous OS. While Fitbit and Garmin OSes lack app support, they excel in battery endurance. It’s also unclear if Tizen watches will continue to receive updates.
Choosing a smartwatch isn’t just about picking hardware. The OS arguably plays a more critical role in its usability. With that said, let us know what your next smartwatch will run.