Garmin vs Apple Watch: Comparison (2022)

Garmin vs Apple Watch

Comparing smartwatches like the Apple and Garmin models can be a bit of a calculus math challenge. They’re both good, reliable technology.

However, if you’re the type that wants to know the differences at the premium level, then certain aspects of these tech tools are going to stand out.

Both the Apple Watch and the Garmin are designed for multiple use benefits. Everything from exercise and sports to adventure and digital connections are intended for their use.

However, the Garmin stands out a bit more, particularly for active sports types ranging from running to surfing and golf.

Add in the fact, unlike the Apple Watch, there are multiple models and choices in the Garmin line, and it just stands out as the better choice overall.

The Fluidity of the Apple Watch

Apple Watch Series 7
  • GPS 45mm Smart Watch.
  • Fitness Tracker
  • Blood Oxygen & ECG Apps
  • Always-On Retina Display
  • Water Resistant
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As an all-around multi-function smartwatch, the Apple Watch excels. It represents the finesse and simplicity that Steve Jobs was famous for requiring in Apple products.

As Jobs hammered so often with his designers, an Apple product should be intuitive to operate. It shouldn’t need a user manual or instructions.

How to use it should just be obvious as the user looks at the device and makes it happen. In this regard, the Apple Watch design hit every target right outside of the park.

The first point to note is that Apple Watch does come in three different choices: the Apple Watch 3 as the base floor model, the Apple Watch SE for a mid-range choice, and the Apple Watch 7 as the premium version.

These choices range from a low of $199 to $279, to a top range price of $399 for the high end. There are nuances of features and fit, but overall the three models are fundamentally similar.

The additional benefits that stand out for the better models. All three versions have two size fits, are integrated with GPS as well as Apple Pay, no surprise, and phone calls and texting from the wrist position.

Apple also wasn’t focused on just a one-purchase approach.

Knowing that many users might just go for the base model first out of the gate but then desire to upgrade, the company made it possible to swap out lower models for discounted pricing on upper-level Apple Watch models. The strategy worked extremely well.

The Functional Beauty of the Garmin Smartwatch

Garmin Venu 2 Plus

GPS Multisport Smartwatch 1.7 in. with Call and Text Music, Adv HM+FF, Cream Gold Bezel with Ivory Cas and Wearable4U.

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On the Garmin side of things, the options available are far more geared for the active user looking for specific types of applications.

Some users like Garmin watches because they work well in the rugged field and in expedition applications. Others like Garmin watches due to their affinity for sports users, particularly those traveling distances like running.

Garmin smartwatches start first with the Venu series of watches provided by the company. The primary model that is the go-to base model is the Garmin Venu 2 Plus.

With a sticker price of about $450, it already out-prices any of the consumer-oriented models, but it also comes with features that aren’t available in ordinary user choices too.

Alternatively, Garmin offers a running specific watch design with the Forerunner series. This smartwatch package runs approximately $300 in price and is represented the most by the Garmin Forerunner 245.

It includes everything from music file play features to timing and specific benefits runners want the most to utilize when on the course.

Finally, for its premium option, Garmin offers the Fenix series. Notably, the Garmin Fenix 7 at $700 is the extreme luxury model offered by the company.

Very attractive features include a battery that can last for weeks, and a field durability that is worthy of a military operations watch status.

For the Enthusiast, One Obvious Choice

Again, the Apple Watch provides a well packaged all-around choice for a smartwatch entry as well as someone who wants a generalist approach to wearable tech that is intuitive.

The design is an ideal production of what Steve Jobs wanted Apple tech to be for the masses.

However, for the outdoor or sports enthusiast who wants a lot more from a smartwatch then just a nice aesthetic feature, texting, time and the ability to answer a phone call, then the Garmin smartwatch line stands out far better.

It simply approaches the idea of wearable tech from a functionality perspective, particularly when dealing with challenging environments or activity demands.

In this regard, the Garmin line of smartwatches tend to be the better choice, even when some of the models might clearly be in a higher price range than even the premium Apple models.

For those who expect the most from the smartwatches, however, that doesn’t seem to be a barrier for connecting with true wearable tech performance. 

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Joe Davies
Joe has a keen interest in wearable tech, after running marathons and triathlons and trying just about every Garmin watch there is.