12 Best GPS Watches to Buy in 2021

Premium Pick

Apple Watch Series 6

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Best Value

Fitbit Charge 4

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Best Choice

Fitbit Ionic GPS Watch

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Having a GPS watch at your disposal can change your whole lifestyle. It’s something that tells you when to exercise, how to minimize calories, and how to lead a healthier lifestyle overall. By just buying smartwatches, people have successfully shifted their days from lazy to productive.

A GPS watch is useful for anyone, really. Even its most basic features like measuring heart rate and running speed calculation make smartwatches good for everyone. There are even GPS watches aimed at golfers, runners, and hikers. In fact, there is even one for kids. With this in mind, we’ve compiled a list of the best watches.

1

Apple Watch Series 6

Released in just September of this year, the Apple Watch Series 6 is an excellent smartwatch that offers top-notch quality. It has all the basic features you need in a GPS watch and then some. This Apple Watch GPS even tracks the amount of oxygen in your blood to give you more insights with regards to your health.

It’s probably a lot faster than your average watch as well. And like any good smartwatch, it comes with an always-on display so you can always monitor the time. You also have the option of ordering it in aluminum, stainless steel, or titanium. Each material has its own unique set of color options. Price also varies depending on the material, with aluminum being the cheapest material and titanium being the most expensive.

Design-wise, it’s almost the same as the Apple Watch Series 5. The key differences are that it has slimmer bezels around its display and it’s optimized to fit any wrist. Additionally, the always-on display is brighter than its predecessor. This is perfect for when you’re outdoors on a hot summer day.

Read this comprehensive comparison of Apple Watch 5 vs. 6.

2

Fitbit Charge 4

According to many reviews, the Fitbit Charge 4 is the best activity tracker out there. Essentially, this GPS watch is primarily targeted at people who work out. Its design is sleek and minimalistic, it and only takes two fingers’ worth of space on your hand. 

The Fitbit Charge 4 has an aluminum chassis and a band that will stick to you, even under intense pressure. It might be small, but it has quite the resume. It is a fitness tracker complete with a built-in GPS, sleep tracking, and heart rate sensors. Plus, its battery life can last up to seven days on idle. 

There’s an incredible amount of value for your money. Once you start running, it will automatically start tracking so you don’t have to worry. The GPS will keep track of you as you run. 

Moreover, you can set it to outdoor workout mode so it can assist you in outdoor activities. And although the GPS tracker and heart rate monitor can be slow occasionally, the Fitbit Charge 4 is probably the best fitness watch for its price.

Check out these Fitbit replacement bands you can get online!

3

Fitbit Ionic GPS Watch

Another great GPS watch from Fitbit is the Ionic. It is another smartwatch focused on fitness. The Ionic was actually the first smartwatch released by Fitbit. And it still continues to be a staple for runners everywhere.

Just as other great GPS smartwatches, the Fitbit Ionic has great battery life, heart rate tracking, sleep tracking, and even coaching. You also have the option of voiced coaching so that you don’t need to look at it when you run. It’s one of the best running watches at its price and is probably still one of the best smartwatches in general. 

It also has its own app, called the Fitbit Coach app. This allows you to look at expert advice and adjust your routine to it. You can access running audio workouts to help improve your running routine, whether you be running indoors or outdoors. 

4

Garmin Fenix 5 Plus

Having a Garmin smartwatch on you is really useful. You might think they’re just like any other smartwatch, but really, they’re top performers. Among the brand’s offers, the Garmin Fenix 5 Plus is the best of the best. It’s durable and it’s got features aplenty.

It is a multisport GPS watch that is an all-in-one package. With it, you can listen to music, look at maps, and even pay your bills. There’s an extensive amount of features with it. It has tracking options for swimming, biking, running, hiking, and even golfing. Not only is it the best GPS watch for hiking, but it also doubles as a golf GPS watch. It’s a sports watch at heart.

There are, however, some downsides to this watch. It’s quite expensive, which is reasonable since it has so many features. However, what’s not reasonable is its short battery life. With a smartwatch that has all these capabilities, you’d think it has a long battery life as well. That is not the case. But if you can get past these disadvantages, it’s probably the best GPS watch feature-wise.

 

5

Garmin Forerunner 245

The Garmin Forerunner 245 is another smartwatch from Garmin. Unlike the Fenix 5 Plus, however, it’s aimed mainly at runners. It’s customizable, comfortable to wear, and easy on the eyes. 

With it, you can monitor your heart rate, track your running speed, and even track your location via GPS. It has an interface that even a child could understand. The Garmin Forerunner 245 is also fairly priced as it gives you good value for your money. 

However, some of its functions do fail occasionally. For instance, its GPS tracking is usually accurate but can sometimes just be completely off the mark. The same goes for its heart rate monitor. Don’t let these occasional malfunctions dissuade you from buying it, though, as it is an excellent GPS watch.

6

Garmin Forerunner 645 Music

The Garmin Forerunner 645 is another smartwatch hailed as one of the best running watches. It is equipped with a variety of features and fixes many of the problems the Forerunner 245 has. Similar to it, the Forerunner 645 is pleasant to wear and is quite easy to use.

Think of it as an upgraded version of the Forerunner 245, but with upgraded features and added music. Of course, you’ll be paying a bit more for it. Its heart rate tracking is completely accurate, and it is fully customizable from the display to your on-screen widgets. 

And similar to other top-notch smartwatches, it has sleep tracking and activity tracking. It’s comfortable enough that you’d want to wear it all day every day, too. However, like the Forerunner 245, it is still a bit lacking in its GPS capabilities, which is really the only problem with it. And even then, it’s more accurate than budget smartwatches.

7

Garmin Forerunner 935

Among the best out of Garmin’s smartwatches is the Garmin Forerunner 935. In terms of features, it has the most even compared to the 245 and the 645 Music. It’s like Garmin learned from all of their past mistakes and released the complete version. 

At a price of nearly $300, the Forerunner 935 is most likely the most complete watch out there. You could even call it a marathon watch since it can track you for a whole marathon. In terms of battery life, it is the best out of the Forerunner series. People also debate that it’s the best product that Garmin has produced thus far.

The GPS is entirely reliable, so you can expect little to no malfunctions. It also has various other features, like advanced metrics to enhance your training sessions. The Forerunner 935 adapts to your body and gives you appropriate training sessions. Really, the only downside to this GPS watch is that it’s a bit expensive. But compared to other top-of-the-line smartwatches, it’s still a great deal.

8

Garmin Vivoactive 4

Unlike the Forerunner 935, the Vivoactive 4 doesn’t have advanced metrics that aid your training. It doesn’t have anything like that, but instead, it adds a bit of life to your running sessions. The design is simply outstanding and you can personalize it to your liking, as well.

This watch has everything you need. A heart rate tracker, support for various sports, and a GPS tracker. In addition to all of these, it also allows you to stream music through Spotify. However, playing music while running does exhaust the battery a considerable bit. 

Honestly, the only downside to this watch is the fact that its features aren’t as extensive as the Forerunner 935. But it makes up for that with its reasonable pricing and intuitive usage. It’s not the best GPS watch out there, but it’s still great.

9

Polar Ignite

One of the brands that have redefined how smartwatches function is Polar. And of their products, the Ignite, is among those with standout features. This Polar watch is a GPS watch complete with a fitness tracker and a precise heart rate monitor. 

Not only that, but it also tracks the number of calories that you lost when you run. And when you’re tuckered out from running, it can track your sleep to see how well you’ve slept. To top it all off, its heart rate monitor is at the top of the game. 

Among its features is also the ability to receive texts and phone calls. One look at your watch even when your phone is away and you’ll be able to view your phone’s notifications. Additionally, it also has a training guide that adapts to you and allows you to set fitness goals. 

10

Polar M430 GPS Watch

Polar’s budget GPS watch is the M430. It’s affordable, it’s simple, and above all, it’s useful. Although its design is kind of boring, its durability more than makes up for it. The Polar M430 is complete with a heart rate monitor and continuous tracking. Even when you’re resting, it’ll measure your heart rate and compare it with when you’re exercising. 

Moreover, it has sleep tracking and comes with an app that allows you to customize your training sessions. You can set goals and measure your physical abilities with it, as well. It has a decent battery life but does have an annoyingly long charge time, which isn’t great for an active lifestyle. 

Although it has a plethora of features, it doesn’t function properly all the time. There are other budget options with a better design, too. But really, for the price, it’s absolutely worth every single penny. 

11

Polar Vantage V

In direct contrast to the M430, the Polar Vantage V is leaning on the more expensive side. And with its price comes extra features and excellent performance. It’s light and fashionable, similar to many other Polar products. 

And unlike other smartwatches, this GPS watch allows you to view training results and feedback. Using this feedback, you can make your routine better and learn what you’re doing right and what you can improve. It even tracks how much effort you’re putting into every exercise, so you’ll always be reminded to do your best. 

This smartwatch also has an excellent battery life, which can last up to nearly two days’ worth of training. Despite all of its features, it can be uncomfortable to wear for some people, which can be a turn-off. Nevertheless, for its price and immense features, it still proves itself worthy of getting on this list.

12

Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2

Another classic brand that revolutionized smartwatches is Samsung. And when it comes to Samsung, they really don’t pull their punches. The Galaxy Watch Active 2 is an excellent smartwatch that feels cheaper than it should be.

Just as with every other Samsung watch, this GPS watch has a sleek, minimalistic design. This makes it a delight to have on your wrist. It comes equipped with automatic activity detection, a heart rate monitor, and even a virtual coach to help you train. Plus, it has an ECG monitor.

This watch has quite a battery life, which can last up to two whole days. It’s the perfect option if you don’t want to spend too much on a GPS watch but still want premium features. Essentially, it’s a mid-range smartwatch with the features of a premium watch.

The Choice Is Yours

GPS watches vary with regard to what they can do. Some primarily track your running and exercise, and others are for sports. Thus, it can be difficult to choose the perfect GPS watch for you. You can make your pick depending on your lifestyle, needs, and workout routine.

If your activities involve water like swimming, check out the best waterproof smartwatches you can get now!

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