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Up for your next gadget and considering a smartwatch—but need to brush up on smartwatches and what they can do for you, aside from serving as nice pieces of wrist candy? We’re here to help you out!

Let’s start off by taking a look at the features and benefits of a smartwatch. Modern smartwatches like the Apple Watch and Samsung’s Galaxy Watch are no less than tiny computers you wear on your wrist just like a wristwatch—but are light years more powerful and capable than any traditional watch could ever hope to be. If you’re asking the question, “how does a smartwatch work?”, there’s your quick and easy answer—they’re computers, albeit really small and wearable ones.

As such, smartwatches possess powerful features that many smartphones have, including mobile operating systems, the capacity to install apps for various purposes, communications features that convey the ability to send SMS or make calls, and connectivity features like Wi-Fi and GPS (and even cellular connectivity for certain models). But that’s far from all that smartwatches can offer—many also come with special features like gyroscopes to track rotation, altimeters to determine altitude, compasses for orientation, and thermometers for temperature checking. They can thus serve as activity and fitness trackers such as heart rate and sleep monitors, calorie trackers, and so on and so forth, which are functions that smartphones may not be able to perform quite so well if at all.

Because smartwatches boast such a broad palette of features, their users are able to enjoy many key benefits. For one, of course, smartwatches still do boast timekeeping features including stopwatch and alarm features—but these are enhanced vis-a-vis those of regular watches. For instance, no ordinary watch could hope to be as personalized and offer the myriad face options that, say, the Apple Watch offers.

Second, as mentioned, smartwatches also do offer tons of smart features, including those conferred by being connected to smartphones. Smartwatches are easily able to forward users notifications whenever someone is emailing, calling, or messaging them, as well as reminders of upcoming meetings, social media notifications, and the like. You can even respond to these messages or return calls via your smartwatch depending on the model. Smartwatches also provide help with navigation and can leverage apps to provide you with turn-by-turn directions to certain spots. You can also use contactless payment features such as Apple Pay and Android Pay on your smartwatch—and can even use features like Find My to locate your iPhone if you’ve misplaced it. Apple Watches are some of the best in this sense because Apple integrates them so intimately with iPhones that the two work seamlessly together.Third, smartwatches are also aces at helping you track and improve your health. If you keep your smartwatch on while you sleep, it can help you measure how long you’ve slept and even how well. Various models can also keep tabs on the number of steps you take throughout the day as well as your heart rate, which helps you monitor heart rhythm and is also a boon for athletes who want to boost their fitness levels. Select models of the Apple Watch also offer key features like an electrocardiogram for heart rate measurements, fall detection which places emergency calls if you fall and are unresponsive, and emergency SOS. Other models can measure calories and can offer specialized features for sports such as triathlon, swimming, and running. While many smartwatches including the Apple Watch and Galaxy Watch do offer these features, specialized sports-specific models from brands such as Garmin, Fitbit and Suunto might be more your thing—check them out.Fourth, smartwatches can also play music files or stream music online, which is a boon for athletes or those taking long trips and who want to amuse themselves without taking out their smartphones. Take note that while some smartwatches have enough internal memory to store some music files, others are better off serving as remote controls and facilitating streaming of music stored on a connected smartphone.

So there you have it—we’ve outlined some key features and benefits conferred by smartwatches and which also do serve as a laundry list of reasons to get a smartwatch. If you haven’t yet managed to do so, check out a smartwatch today and see how it can make your life that much easier and more convenient—and fun, too!



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