Smartwatch Gift?

woman-looking-at-smartwatch-image-from-shutterstockSmartwatch Gift? a reader asks…

Hi Chris, can you give me some advice about giving a smartwatch to someone as a gift? I’m not sure which watch to give my special someone. I can tell you that it’s a she (I’m her significant other), she likes to exercise and jog but isn’t a fanatic about it, and does tend to use her smartphone a lot. She’s always checking Facebook and Twitter, and we both use SnapChat alot, plus email and tons (like dozens a day) of text messages. Any thoughts on which smartwatch would be the best?

woman-holding-present-image-from-shutterstockThanks for sharing some of your giftee’s traits and habits, there’s a lot of hints in there. The one thing you didn’t share with me though, is which type of smartphone she uses. That fact will inform you best about what type of smartwatch to buy. Good gift-giving is highly personal, and you don’t want to buy something that will end up in a drawer somewhere, or will cause a confused look on the giftee’s face when she receives it. So it’s good that you’re giving some thought to what to get your SO. If a smartwatch sounds good to you, then go for it!

It will be more likely she’ll use a smartwatch if she already wears a watch normally. Points off if she’s in love with her current watch, extra points if she complains that she has to take her smartphone with her everywhere so she can keep up with the world. But it all comes down to matching the smartwatch with her other technology – specifically what type of smartphone she uses.

apple-watch-image-from-appledotcomIf your SO uses an iPhone, then the choice is quite simple, get her an Apple Watch. If she were more of a fanatic runner, then a Garmin smartwatch might be a better choice, but for an iPhone user who uses social media and texting a lot, the Apple Watch is going to delight her eyes (and wrist!).

  • Many apps on her iPhone will have a streamlined version on the Watch, which means she can keep up on social media with just a glance at her wrist. She only has to pull out the iPhone for more.
  • She can view and respond to text messages easily, either with short canned answers or dictating to her wrist, Dick Tracey-style.
  • She can view her timeline in Twitter and retweet, favorite and even compose tweets (using the built-in microphone to dictate).
  • While there’s no official Facebook app yet, you can run Facebook Messenger.

samsung-gears2-image-from-samsungdotcomIf your SO uses an Android phone, then I wouldn’t bother with the Apple Watch – it’s too tied to the iPhone. You could consider the Samsung Gear S2, which offers a lot of functionality in a very stylish package.

  • Pay extra to get onboard GPS and she won’t need her smartphone to help track runs.
  • Notifications from her smartphone are good (similar to the Apple Watch)
  • A twitter app allows for social networking.

Some other Android-compatible choices are:

If by chance she uses a different smartphone (Windows Phone?), then you’re free to choose whatever smartwatch you want, it’ll be pretty much independent of her smartphone.

There are a lot of choices, and you can bet that companies will continue to inundate us with more models and more functionality. Oh, and whatever you get her, next year a newer, better model will be available that will make whatever you get her now look clunky. Just sayin…

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