Wearables

Fossil Sport Smartwatch: A sporty smartwatch

Fossil Sport Smartwatch
Fossil Sport Smartwatch

The Fossil Sport Smartwatch has to be one of the best-looking Wear OS smartwatches in the market now, with its minimalist and two-tone design.

It comes in two case sizes - 41 and 43mm - and a variety of colour options, including red/silver. I tested the 43mm grey/black model. Its aluminium body features a grey bezel, which surrounds a 1.39-inch (390 x 390 pixels) circular touchscreen display. The black finish of the rear of the case and a black silicone watch band complete its classic watch look.

On one side of the case is a crown sandwiched between two buttons. The buttons can be customised, but by default, the top button gives access to the Fossil app for customising watch faces, while the bottom one is a shortcut to the Google Fit app for tracking workouts.

I like the crown, which is rotatable, and lets you scroll through notifications and the menu interface without blocking the display.

I love how light and comfortable the watch feels on my wrist. It comes with built-in GPS, heart-rate monitor, altimeter, accelerometer and is water-resistant to a depth of 50m. While the Sport has Near Field Communications (NFC), it is currently not available in Singapore, so you cannot use Google Pay with it.

The watch has the latest Qualcomm Snapdragon Wear 3100 chip, said to deliver better battery life than the chips of previous Wear OS smartwatches.

But I find the battery life to be mediocre. With the always-on display switched on and the watch constantly paired to an Android smartphone, it was left with 40 per cent battery life at the end of the day.

  • FOR

    • Clean design

    • Nice rotatable crown

    • Lightweight and comfortable

  • AGAINST

    • Mediocre battery life

    • Price might not be attractive enough

  • SPECS

    PRICE: $489

    COMPATIBILITY: Smartphones running Android 4.4 and above or iOS 9.3 and above

    CONNECTIVITY: Bluetooth, NFC (not available in Singapore), Wi-Fi

    WATER RESISTANCE: 50m

    WEIGHT: 36g (with silicone strap)

  • RATING

    FEATURES: 3.5/5

    DESIGN: 4.5/5

    PERFORMANCE: 3.5/5

    BATTERY LIFE: 2.5/5

    VALUE FOR MONEY: 4/5

    OVERALL: 4/5

It took 40 seconds to lock onto a GPS signal and it counted 200m more when tracking the distance of my 5km jogging route - both of which are quite decent showings.

But in terms of step-counting, it tracked 15 cent more steps compared with my calibrated Apple Watch Series 4.

While it is not cheap at $489, the Sport is less expensive than the Apple Watch Series 4, which starts at $599. It sits more in the mid-range price bracket, which includes smartwatches like the Lite OS-based Huawei Watch GT (from $328) and the Tizen OS-based Samsung Galaxy Watch (from $398).

While the Sport is more expensive than these, it has the advantage of running the more mainstream Wear OS that lets users tap the Google Play Store's rich variety of apps, compared with the limited third-party apps in the Lite OS and Tizen OS.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 22, 2019, with the headline 'Sporty smartwatch'. Print Edition | Subscribe