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These are the best smartwatches with LTE connectivity you can buy

Wearables with LTE connectivity are made for a very specific type of user — the one who doesn't want to take their phone out to work out — and they're becoming more and more popular these days. While everyone has their preference, we feel confident saying that the Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 is the best LTE smartwatch you can buy. It has a nice blend of smartwatch perks and health/fitness tracking that most users will appreciate. Fortunately, there are plenty of options to choose from.

Best Overall: Samsung Galaxy Watch 3

The Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 is one of the company's latest watches. In fact, it's only a few months old. If you like having the latest model, you'll appreciate this LTE smartwatch. The original model also offered optional LTE connectivity, but it didn't cater much to the fitness crowd. The Galaxy Watch 3, however, has come a long way since then.

One of the reasons this is the best LTE smartwatch is all the new features, including SpO2 and VO2 max readings. If you're not familiar, SpO2 readings measure your blood oxygen saturation levels and VO2 max tells you how much oxygen your body consumes during an activity. You also get an electrocardiogram (ECG) sensor to detect irregular heartbeats and blood pressure monitoring. These are ideal for those who want insightful health data. Some other new perks you might like are the built-in run coaching and recovery tools. Additionally, you get can access more than 120 home workout videos on the Samsung Health app. Like its predecessor, it's also available in two sizes: 41mm and 45mm.

The only disappointment here is the battery life, which will only last for 2-3 days depending on usage. This may not come as much of a surprise, but you'll also need to brace yourself for the hefty price tag on this one. As a new model, it's bound to be more costly, especially when you opt for the LTE version. If you've patiently waited to upgrade to the newest Apple Watch and don't mind the price, this might be the right choice for you.

Pros:

  • Premium design
  • Two size options
  • MIL-STD-810G durability
  • Built-in GPS
  • Activity/health tracking
  • Samsung Pay

Cons:

  • Mediocre battery life
  • Fairly expensive

Best Overall

Samsung Galaxy Watch 3

As premium as it gets

You'll love the premium design, optional LTE, and new health/fitness perks if you're looking to upgrade to the Galaxy Watch 3.

Best Value: Samsung Galaxy Watch

The original Samsung Galaxy Watch may not be as fancy as its successor, but it still offers an attractive design and comes in two sizes. If you aren't bothered by a chunkier design, this durable wearable has many advantages. If you don't mind the missing health/fitness features that the newer model offers, the Galaxy Watch offers a great value that's hard to beat when you're trying to find the best LTE smartwatch.

It's just as solid as its successor and offers the same military-grade durability rating. As you might've guessed, this watch also runs on Tizen OS. It comes with an old school physical rotating bezel that pairs nicely with a highly responsive touchscreen. The watch might be a bit on the older side, but the activity and sleep tracking still get the job done. The interchangeable band system makes it easy to replace the strap with whatever you like. You also get built-in GPS, heart-rate monitoring, and Samsung Pay. Depending on the model, the Galaxy Watch can usually average around 3-4 days of battery life.

Considering that the two size options are 42mm and 46mm, these are some big watches. If you're looking for something modest and subtle, this is not the wearable for you. Once again, it's worth mentioning this is not a new model. It's over two years old, so you won't get all the company's latest features and improvements. If you're content with having LTE connectivity and other useful smartwatch perks, this could be a perfect choice.

Pros:

  • Solid, durable design
  • Two size options
  • MIL-STD-810G durability
  • Built-in GPS
  • Samsung Pay works

Cons:

  • Rather chunky design
  • Tizen OS can be tough for newbies
  • Older model
  • Missing some fitness features on Galaxy Watch 3

Best Value

Samsung Galaxy Watch

Affordable smarts

The Samsung Galaxy Watch is an affordable alternative for those who don't need the newest model on the block.

Best for Fitness: Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2

If you're an active individual looking for the best LTE smartwatch to help you with your fitness, you'll love the Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2. First, it offers users a compact and lightweight design that's still very fashionable. It may not be as impressive as the Galaxy Watch 3 in terms of design, but it's a close second. It comes in two sizes: 40mm and 44mm. The crisp AMOLED touchscreen also has a digital rotating bezel for quick and easy navigation. Many Android users may already be accustomed to Tizen OS, but newcomers may need some time to adjust to the software. The battery lasts around 2-3 days depending on usage and which model you buy.

In addition to LTE connectivity, you get a ton of health and fitness-tracking features. Some of the main perks you'll have include built-in GPS, automatic activity-tracking, heart-rate monitoring, and sleep tracking. You can also take advantage of the water, food, and caffeine-consumption tracking. The Running Coach feature now offers real-time pace metrics that are accompanied by a breakdown of what to expect from your workout before you start. The Running Analysis feature is designed to help you become a better runner, improve your form, and prevent injuries. You can also measure VO2 max on this watch. The blood pressure monitoring feature and ECG sensor are also present.

If you want a well-rounded smartwatch that helps you stay connected while also helping you track your health and fitness, the Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 is a marvelous choice. It's a pretty expensive wearable when you tack on LTE, but that's an ongoing theme you'll need to prepare for if you want that perk. If this is your first Samsung watch, don't be intimidated by the learning curve that comes with Tizen OS. You'll be a pro with a bit of practice!

Pros:

  • Lovely design
  • Two size options
  • Automatic activity tracking
  • Built-in GPS
  • ECG, blood pressure monitoring
  • Samsung Pay

Cons:

  • Tizen OS is an adjustment for newbies
  • Not a huge upgrade from predecessor
  • Shorter battery life with LTE

Best for Fitness

Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2

Stay active and connected

Fitness enthusiasts can stay active with the Watch Active 2. It offers LTE, two size options, GPS, and more.

Best Oversized Option: TicWatch Pro 4G/LTE

At this point, we've seen multiple variations of the TicWatch Pro. Mobvoi went in a different direction with the TicWatch Pro 4G/LTE. This is the best LTE smartwatch for those who want to stay connected with a watch that can also handle basic health/activity tracking. With that said, this is another instance of "not the newest model" so don't expect it to be the best wearable experience ever.

You'll have what you need, including LTE connectivity via Verizon for staying connected, built-in GPS, heart-rate monitoring, activity/health tracking with Google Fit, Google Pay, and Google Assistant. Most importantly, you'll have a built-in mic and speaker, which makes it easy to take calls and use Google Assistant. The unique dual-layer display helps extend battery life, which is a nice bonus. The Essential Mode uses the LCD only, which is limiting but it can extend the battery life by up to 30 days. while also shutting down Wear OS. As you might've guessed, this limits what you can actually do with your smartwatch. Most people will prefer Smart Mode, which switches to the LCD when your watch is idle and can extend battery life by up to five days.

Dainty wrists will want to look elsewhere. This giant 45mm case is not for small-wristed folks. If you can stomach the fact that the TicWatch Pro 4G/LTE is still running the Snapdragon Wear 2100 processor and you might experience some buggy performance, it's not a bad deal for all the features you get.

Pros:

  • Large, rugged design
  • MIL-STD-810G durability
  • Built-in GPS
  • Activity/health tracking
  • Google Pay and Google Assistant

Cons:

  • Running old Snapdragon Wear 2100
  • Too large for some wrists
  • Only available on Verizon

Best Oversized Option

TicWatch Pro 4G/LTE

Large and in charge

It may be over a year old, but the TicWatch Pro 4G/LTE offers several key smartwatch features in a large, rugged form factor.

Best for Wear OS Users: Fossil Gen 5 LTE

As always, we received plenty of exciting wearable news at CES 2021, including the long-awaited launch of the Fossil Gen 5 LTE. This is a big deal for Fossil after choosing to stay out of the LTE game for several years now. While this is a great step forward for the company, this watch isn't exactly new. In fact, the name is familiar for a reason. The Fossil Gen 5 LTE includes everything you've already experienced on the original Fossil Gen 5 with LTE connectivity through Verizon baked in.

To recap, the features include built-in GPS, heart-rate monitoring, activity/health tracking, Google, Pay, and Google Assistant. Now, you can leave your behind when you head outside for a run or to the gym. You'll still be able to stream music, track your route, receive calls/texts, and use Google Assistant. The design is the same with a 45mm stainless steel case that comes in Smoke or Rose Gold. The new battery saving modes let you choose how often you charge. Daily Mode lets you use most features, but you'll need to charge it nightly. Extended Mode lets you use essential features daily and charge it every few days. The less-popular Time Only Mode turns your watch into a clock so the battery can last over a week.

With all of this in mind, the only new feature you're getting is LTE connectivity. If that's what you've been waiting for in a Fossil smartwatch, then it's time for a celebration. Other users, however, may view this as a missed opportunity for Fossil to make use of the new Snapdragon Wear 4100 processor. Currently, you can purchase the Fossil Gen 5 LTE directly from the company or through Verizon.

Pros:

  • Two gorgeous color options
  • Built-in GPS
  • Activity/health tracking
  • Google Pay
  • Google Assistant

Cons:

  • Only come in one size
  • Only available on Verizon
  • Missed opportunity for new Snapdragon Wear 4100

Best for Wear OS Users

Fossil Gen 5 LTE

Hot new item

Fossil has joined the LTE game at last. If you're familiar with the brand, simply add LTE to it and you have the Fossil Gen 5 LTE.

Best for Apple Users: Apple Watch Series 6

The Apple Watch Series 6 is one of the latest releases from the company. While there may not be a ton of upgrades when you compare it to its predecessor, some iOS users might be willing to take the leap. The company also rolled out its new subscription service, Apple Fitness+, which works with Series 3 models and later. The service offers a library of video-led workouts. Choose your workout and display the video on the Apple device of your choice. During your activity, your real-time Apple Watch data will be displayed right on the screen.

Some of the key features you can expect include built-in GPS, heart-rate monitoring, sleep tracking, an always-on altimeter for tracking floors climbed, ECG blood oxygen (SpO2) monitoring, and Apple Pay. The design hasn't changed much, but there are new color options, which include blue, red, gold, and graphite. The case material options are the same: aluminum, stainless steel, and titanium. Although, Apple has eliminated the ceramic case option with the Apple Watch Series 6. One upgrade is the new S6 processor, which promises to run faster and longer than the previous model.

As you might've guessed, the Apple Watch Series 6 is still an insanely expensive device. Is it the best LTE smartwatch for iOS users right now? Probably. Keep in mind that if you don't want to spend a pretty penny on the newest model, many of the previous models also offer LTE connectivity. Another disappointment is the lackluster 18-hour battery life, which never seems to improve.

Pros:

  • Modern, attractive design
  • Two size options
  • Built-in GPS
  • Activity/health tracking
  • ECG, blood oxygen monitoring
  • Apple Fitness+ subscription available

Cons:

  • So dang expensive
  • Not a big upgrade from predecessor
  • Not for Android users
  • Short battery life

Best for Apple Users

Apple Watch Series 6

Pretty but pricey

The Apple Watch Series 6 not only offers LTE, but has built-in sleep tracking, a better processor, and Apple Fitness+.

Best LTE smartwatch How to choose

When it comes to finding the best set of features and the most appealing design, the Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 is easily the best LTE smartwatch out there right now. It's also one of the best Android smartwatches, so you get the best of both worlds with this wearable. In addition to LTE, you'll have a gorgeous design that comes in two sizes, a robust health/fitness tracking suite, built-in GPS, heart-rate tracking, ECG, blood pressure monitoring, and blood oxygen tracking.

It goes without saying that each of the options on this list caters to a different kind of smartwatch user, so pick the one that is best suited to your needs. There's a little something for everyone and if technology keeps heading in this direction, there will be many more LTE smartwatches to come in the future.

Credits — The team that worked on this guide

Courtney Lynch is a freelance writer at Android Central. She's obsessed with all things health, fitness, and music. At any given time, she can be found checking out the latest and greatest gadgets while simultaneously petting her dog and sipping iced coffee.



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