UPDATE: We've streamlined and improved our best smartwatch list. It's now in order from worst to best, and we've cut the wearables we wouldn't recommend to our worst enemy.
Whether they’re keeping you updated with notifications, feeding you information from apps, making sure don’t spend too long sat down or just, y’know, showing the time, this latest crop of clever timepieces are far improved over the last generation.
There's a number of platforms to choose from, and the smartphone sitting in your pocket will also have a rather large bearing on your options.
Android Wear, currently, only works with Android headsets, naturally, and the same goes Apple Watch and iOS (of course). Pebble works across both Android and iOS (but not Windows Phone, yet).
- Looking for a more traditional timepiece? Check out our favourite watches here
9. Cogito Classic
Rather than going all out smartwatch, the Cogito Classic keeps the typical wrist watch look, complete with familiar clock face, but brings things up to date with a couple of nifty connected features. Once linked, via Bluetooth, to your smartphone, the display will light up if you get missed calls, texts or an alert on Facebook. It'll also keep you updated with your next calendar appointment and how much juice is left in your phone, so you don't accidentally run out half way through the day.
Verdict: It's a nice product, especially if you're not into fitness tracking, but ultimately, if you're after a smartwatch with all the bells and whistles, this won't cut the mustard.
£96.57 | Cogito
8. Asus Zenwatch
Entering the wearable market for the first time, Asus has announced the ZenWatch, an Android Wear toting smartwatch that features a sleek design, premium build and a couple of nifty software additions. There’s a 2.5-inch display, with a load of customised watchfaces and a leather strap, plus the usual assortment of fitness features. A handy Remote Camera App is also included.
Verdict: We really like the Asus Zenwatch, but the fitness features let it down, as does the screen and large bezel.
£179.99 | Asus
7. LG G Watch R
LG's older Android Wear toting smartwatch takes a cue from the Moto 360 and comes packing a circular face. Unlike the 360 though, the G Watch R has a 320x320 display that's a full circle, no black bar at the bottom here. It's also the first smartwatch that has the most in common with a regular wrist watch, even though it's still quite bulky. Inside, there's a Snapdragon 400 processor, 4GB storage and 512MB RAM, while you should get a full day of use before having to reach for the charger.
Verdict: The LG G Watch R is a very impressive device, it's got a great screen and impressive performance, but it's slightly on the chunky side.
£200 | LG
6. Moto 360
Easily the best looking Android Wear smartwatch we've seen so far, it manages to be both futuristic but also traditional. Motorola has introduced a circular face boasting clever time-piece that features completely custom-made parts. Running Android Wear, it takes many aspects of Google Now and puts them on your wrist.
Verdict: The Moto 360 is a truly desirable smartwatch, but it's underpowered internals and the infamous 'black bar' let it down.
£154.50 | Moto 360
5. Samsung Gear S
Samsung officially went smartwatch crazy in 2014, releasing countless wearable items running all manner of operating systems. Unlike the Gear Live, which runs Android Wear, the Gear S is back to Tizen - though it does have a few tricks up its sleeve.
The key feature is the sim card slot, which lets you use the watch even without a phone connected. Samsung has also taken inspiration from the Gear Fit, bringing that curved display to the Gear S. Here it’s a 2-inch screen, with a 360x480 resolution that curves around your wrist.
Verdict: It's the only watch on this list that doesn't require a smartphone - that's very impressive and noteworthy - but ultimtely, it's far too large.
£230.55 | Samsung
4. Sony Smartwatch 3
The third iteration of Sony’s Smartwatch is the first to ditch the proprietary software and run with Android Wear, making it much more likely to attract a larger audience. The display is 1.6-inches, it is IP68 rated for water resistance, there’s 512MB RAM and 4GB of internal storage and it’ll connect to your device through Bluetooth LE and NFC. GPS is also a bonus, in fact it's the first Android Wear watch that's capable of tracking your run without a phone connection.
Verdict: The Sony Smartwatch 3 is a very capable device, it's not the most powerful or fully featured, but it does most things well at a very reasonable price.
£113 | Sony
3. Pebble Time
The Pebble Time is a big step up from the original Pebble smartwatch. Now with a colour e-ink display and a slimmer design the Pebble Time is the only smartwatch on this list that works with both iOS and Android. The 'timeline' UI allows you to easily see both past and future events, and the large developer community have created an impressive number of applications and watch faces for it. It's water resistant (we took it white water rafting), and the battery life lasts around five-days. The regular Times comes in a plastic shell, while the Time Steel adds a premium metal finish.
Verdict: We really love the Pebble Time's geeky, retro vibe. It's got unmatched battery life (on this list), but it just doesn't feel as futuristic as other watches we've included.
£179 | Pebble Time
2. LG Watch Urbane
LG is aiming the Watch Urbane is the perfect alternative to the Apple Watch. It’s face is constructed from metal and definitely has a whiff of the traditional timepiece about it, it’ll run two days without needing to be juiced up and the P-OLED delivers inky blacks and plenty of detail. It’s also the first Android Wear toting watch to run Google’s latest software update - letting you connect directly to wifi hotspots, send emojis by drawing them and using the power of a wrist flick to move through your notifications.
But, even though the price is only slightly less than Apple’s £299 Watch Sport version, the Urbane is still pretty much just like every other Android Wear smartwatch so far on the inside. You’ve got a Snapdragon 400 processor, 4GB internal storage and 512MB RAM.
Verdict: If you've got an Android phone and big enough wrists this is the smartwatch you should go for. It's stylish, fast and has decent battery life.
£204.99 | LG
1. Apple Watch
What has Apple added to revolutionise the smartwatch? Well, let's take a look. First off is the Digital Crown - a twisty button on the side that acts as the main mode of navigation. There's heaps of customisation options too, with three models in two sizes and a load of straps to give you that personal watch feeling. The Apple Watch will run apps, show notifications, track your fitness levels and it'll charge wirelessly with a MacBook style Magsafe charger. Protecting that Retina display is sapphire glass, so scratches should be few and far between.
Verdict: Apple's first smartwatch has really impressed us, the design and screen are amazing and the number of big-name apps is impressive. It's not perfect, but it's certainly the best out there.