The Apple Watch got some new competition at CES 2022

Garmin has always made excellent fitness-focused watches, but now it’s stepping up its smartwatch game at CES 2022 with the Venu 2 Plus and Vivomove Sport.

The Venu 2 Plus has a speaker and microphone so you can take calls and use your phone’s voice assistant. on your wrist, while the Vivomove Sport blends smartwatches and traditional wristwatches with actual ticking hands on top of the touchscreen. I’ve been testing the new Venu 2 Plus with pre-release software for about a week now. So far I’ve been impressed by how much the speaker and microphone add to the experience.

The earlier Venu 2, already an excellent wearable with extensive fitness tracking features, received a CNET Editors’ Choice award in 2021. But the main downside prevents it from going face-to-face with other wearables like the Apple Watch Series 7, Galaxy Watch.

4 and the Fitbit Sense lacked speakers and mics. The Venu 2 Plus looks very similar to the Venu 2 and comes with a bright, circular AMOLED display that’s easy to see in daylight. But now it has an additional button that lets you interact with your voice assistant through a long press. You can also assign shortcuts or favorites to a single press.

Another outward difference between last year’s Venu 2 series and the Venu 2 Plus is that the new watch only comes in 43mm in size, while the Venu 2 and 2S were 45mm and 40mm respectively. Like Fitbit’s watches, the Venu 2 Plus and Vivomove Sport are compatible with both iOS and Android, unlike the Apple Watch which is iPhone-only and the Galaxy Watch 4 which is now Android-only.

I can call Siri on iOS or Google Assistant or Bixby on Android to send a quick text message by simply pressing a button. I really don’t like taking my phone out during an outdoor workout, so being able to reliably text or make quick calls to the watch is really helpful. Speaker quality is clear, and so far I’ve found it easy to hear callers when they’re outside. I also love the audible cues every time I stop and start a workout, or hit a goal like steps or altitude for the day.

Unlike some wearable devices like the Apple Watch, you won’t be able to start a workout with your voice on the Venu 2 Plus. It’s really just a middle ground to reach out to your voice assistant and hear the responses on your wrist. But Garmin’s navigation system is easy enough to learn, and it takes two presses to start a workout anyway, so I don’t mind.

Battery life lasts nine days, much longer than the Apple Watch Series 7 and Galaxy Watch 4, which barely lasted two days. In my testing so far with the prerelease software, the watch lasted a full eight days before charging. Most of the other features are the same as the Venu 2 and 2S, that means built-in GPS, sleep tracking, blood-oxygen monitoring, and a wide range of fitness and workout tracking modes.

It shares many of these health and fitness features with the Vivomove Sport, except that the watch uses connected GPS, so you’ll need to carry your phone with you to track distance and pace during an outdoor workout. In fact, the biggest drawing card of the Vivomove Sport is the nice integration of the watch’s hands into the hinge. Most of the time it looks like a regular wristwatch, but when you need to interact with it, the hands move to reveal the touchscreen.

Stay tuned for full reviews of the Garmin Venu 2 Plus and Vivomove Sport. Both watches are available now for $450 for the Venu 2 Plus and $180 for the Vivomove Sport. If you don’t need a speaker and mic on your wrist, the Venu 2 and 2S remain in the Garmin lineup, and both recently received price cuts of $350.

When it comes to working out most of us find ourselves falling into one of two groups: reluctant gymgoers and gym rats. Whether you like to work out or not, one thing that can help keep you motivated and making the most of your time is tracking your activity with Fitbit.

These smartwatches can track your fitness activities, sleep patterns, stress levels and heart health. If you’re interested in monitoring your fitness journey in 2022 and beyond, the Fitbit is a stylish, comfortable, and effective way to get you in shape.

We saw some impressive offers on these fitness trackers during last season’s holiday sales, but if you missed them, don’t panic. While many of those deals have expired, there are still some deals available on Fitbit smartwatches. Check out the best deals currently available below. We’ll update this article periodically as deals expire and new price drops affect retailers.

If you’re already sold on getting a Fitbit but aren’t sure which one is right for you, we’ve got all the info you need. Read this article for a deep dive on some of Fitbit’s most prominent models on sale.

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