5 Best Hybrid Smartwatches of 2019

Posted on

Ever wanted a watch that looks and feels like a traditional analog time piece, but offers a bit more functionality than simply telling the time? Well with a hybrid smartwatch this idea has become a reality, with a number of watch brands now offering exactly that.

This guide looks at the best hybrid smartwatches currently on the market and compares the best and worst parts about them, helping you to make a better decision on which one is best for you. Before we get into that though, let’s take a look at a few important things to consider when buying one of these devices.

Budget
budget-hybrid-smartwatch
Misfit Command Hybrid Smartwatch
4.3/5.0
Size: Case: 44mm, Case thickness: 15mm, Strap: 20mm
Construction: Casing: Stainless steel, Face: Aluminum, Strap: Silicone, stainless steel
Battery life: 1 year (non-rechargeable)
Low price, interesting features.
Check Amazon
Best Value
best-value-hybrid-smartwatch
Withings/Nokia Steel HR Hybrid Smartwatch
4.7/5.0
Size: Case: 36mm, 40mm, Case thickness: 13mm, Strap: 18mm (36mm), 20mm (40mm)
Construction: Casing: Stainless steel, Strap: Silicone, leather
Battery life: Standard mode: 25 days, Low power mode: 45 days
Stylish, affordable, feature-rich.
Check Amazon
Top Pick
top-pick-hybrid-smartwatch
Withings Steel HR Sport
4.8/5.0
Size: Case: 40mm, Case thickness: 13mm, Strap: 20mm
Construction: Casing: Stainless steel, Strap: Silicone
Battery life: Standard mode: 25 days, Low power mode: 45 days
Excellent features, stylish design, no gimmicks and long battery life with both modes.
Check Amazon

What to look for in a hybrid smartwatch





Top Hybrid Smartwatches Comparison Table

Now that we have discussed all of the important aspects of a hybrid smartwatch, let’s take a look at the best options currently on the market.

Make and ModelSizeConstructionBattery LifePrice Check
Garmin vívomove HR SmartwatchCase: 43mm, Strap: 20mmBezel: Stainless steel, Casing: Fibre-reinforced polymer, stainless steel, Strap: Silicone, leatherSmart mode: 5 days, Watch mode: 2 weeksCheck Price
Withings/Nokia Steel HR Hybrid SmartwatchCase: 36mm, 40mm, Case thickness: 13mm, Strap: 18mm (36mm), 20mm (40mm)Casing: Stainless steelStandard mode: 25 days, Low power mode: 45 daysCheck Price
Misfit Command Hybrid SmartwatchCase: 44mm, Case thickness: 15mm, Strap: 20mm,Casing: Stainless steel, Face: Aluminum, Strap: Silicone, stainless steel1 yearCheck Price
Withings Steel HR Sport SmartwatchCase: 40mm, Case thickness: 13mm, Strap: 20mmCasing: Stainless steel, Strap: SiliconeStandard mode: 25 days, Low power mode: 45 daysCheck Price
MyKronoz ZeTime Petite Premium Hybrid Smartwatch Case: 39mm, Case thickness: 13mm, Strap: 18mmCasing: Stainless steel, Glass: Sapphire, Strap: Leather, silicone2-30 daysCheck Price

1. Garmin vívomove HR Smartwatch

Garmin vívomove HR SmartwatchView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.6/5.0

For quite a while now Garmin has been releasing a multitude of fitness trackers and other wearable’s but the Vivomove HR might just be the pick of the bunch. There are some notable improvements over the original Vivomove and it is now a full-blown hybrid smartwatch rather than what was essentially a fitness tracker with the previous model.

Design

The watch is quite simply beautiful to look at and it is clear that the manufacturing process used for making these watches gives a lot of attention to detail. The whole device is well-crafted and all the seams and joins on the watch line up perfectly.

Garmin has always been known for prioritizing function over form and many of their products in the past have been criticized for looking a little ugly. However, the Vivomove HR is certainly an exception to this, and it is clear that Garmin is beginning to turn a corner when it comes to creating products that not only work well but look good too.

The watch is also reasonably sized with the measuring 43mm across and a strap width of 20mm. This means the Vivomove HR should look good on most wrists, regardless of size and also feel comfortable and not too bulky.

As for the construction, the device is made up of a range of materials including stainless steel for the bezel, a fiber-reinforced polymer or stainless steel for the casing, and either silicone or leather for the strap. This gives you quite a lot of options in terms of how you want the watch to look and it a further example of how far Garmin has become in terms of aesthetics.

These materials are all really durable as well, meaning that no matter which configuration you go far the device should be able to withstand quite a bit of punishment.

Battery life

The battery life on this device is probably the only thing that could do with an improvement. In Smart mode, the device should last around 5 days which is decent but not great for a hybrid smartwatch.

Alternatively, you can use the device in Watch mode which will allow you to get about 2 weeks out of the device before needing to charge it. Although this is quite a significant increase in battery life, it should be noted that the compromise in terms of features is arguably not worth it.

Features

The Vivomove HR is packed with features including heart rate monitoring, sleep tracking, stress tracking, and activity monitoring. There is also a hidden display that illuminates with notifications and menus which is a nice touch. This display isn’t visible when idle but when in use it reveals that Garmin has baked an entire OS into this device, which is really impressive.

It is also one of only a few hybrid smartwatches that currently include a heart rate monitor. What makes this monitor extra special though is that Garmin also uses it to track stress. Stress monitoring is a new thing being introduced to wearable tech and it’s great to see that Garmin has implemented it on this device.

There are no buttons on this watch and all interaction takes place by swiping left and right on the bottom half of the watch face where the display is. Having a display opens up the option to read messages on the device, something not seen on many hybrid watches and like many other Garmin wearable’s, the Vivomove HR can support every notification your phone has.

One annoying detail about the notification system though is that they can’t be filtered. Your only options are to have them all on, all off, or to only notify you about incoming calls. The other issue with notifications is that the display is so small that it can’t show enough information on it at any one time. It is certainly usable but in most cases, it will probably be quicker for you to get your phone out instead.

The watch is also water resistant up to 50 meters, meaning it is perfectly fine to use the device in the shower or while swimming.

For a hybrid smartwatch, this device is excellent. It is one of the only hybrids on the market right now that actually feels somewhat like a regular smartwatch and although there are a few issues with the display, it is still a solid device.

amazon

Tech Specs
Size: Case: 43mm, Strap: 20mm
Construction: Bezel: Stainless steel, Casing: Fibre-reinforced polymer, stainless steel, Strap: Silicone, leather
Battery life: Smart mode: 5 days, Watch mode: 2 weeks
Features: Heart rate monitor, sleep tracking, stress tracking, fitness monitoring
The Pros
Not too big
Should like good on most wrists
Strap size is universal
Durable
Multiple strap options
Stylish design
Multiple modes
Excellent range of features
Includes a heart rate monitor
Includes sleep tracking
The Cons
Battery life shorter than most
Features are more comparable to that of a fitness tracker rather than a smartwatch

2. Withings/Nokia Steel HR Hybrid Smartwatch (Best Value)

Withings/Nokia Steel HR Hybrid SmartwatchView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.7/5.0

If you are looking for a watch that combines minimalist analog styling with modern smartwatch features, the Nokia Steel HR is an excellent option to go for.

The watch was originally branded as the Withings Steel HR but after Nokia took over the company it was renamed the Nokia Steel HR. Aside from the name change, the product is essentially the same.

Design

As mentioned, the device has a minimalist design that resembles a traditional analog watch. This gives the watch a very stylish, classy appearance not seen on many hybrid smartwatches at the moment.

It is also clear that this watch is very high quality. Every part of the device has clearly been manufactured with great precision and there are no loose or flimsy parts to irritate you or potentially fall off.

The watch comes in two different sizes including a 36mm version and a 40mm version. This means the device will look good on most wrists regardless of your size and it is great to see multiple options available.

There is one issue with the sizes of this device though in that the bigger size is still relatively small. Given that they have purposely made a smaller version for smaller wrists, it would have been nice to see the larger model offering a diameter of around 42mm rather than 40mm. This is only a minor change, but it would have made a big difference, especially for those of you who have very large wrists.

As for the construction, it is very solid with a stainless steel casing and the option of silicone or leather for the strap. These materials are fairly commonplace when it comes to watches of any kind but on a timepiece with these aesthetics, they are the perfect choice.

The stainless steel casing will provide great levels of durability and should be very resistant to water corrosion, no matter how much you use it. Both strap materials will also provide a decent level of durability and they complement the look of the watch face very nicely.

The device is also water resistant and should be fine to use in up to 50 meters of water. This means it is fine to use the device for swimming and most other water-related activities, with the exception of deep-sea diving of course.

Battery Life

The watch has two different modes that offer different levels of battery life. The standard mode will allow the watch to last for around 25 days before needing a charge, however, if you need more battery life than that you can switch to low power mode which can keep the device going for about 45 days before eventually giving up.

This is great if you are going on a long trip where you will be away from a plug socket, but for most of us, this is unlikely. Therefore, you are better off keeping the device in the standard mode instead as it will still last a long time while also giving you maximum levels of performance and functionality.

Features

Like the Vivomove HR, the Steel HR has a lot of great features that help it to stand out from a lot of other hybrids. The main features of this device include heart rate monitoring, sleep tracking, multisport tracking, GPS, and fitness monitoring. This is a decent range of features to have and it’s good to see more hybrid watches beginning to implement so many different tracking options.

There is also a single button on the device that can be used to cycle through various menus to view stats. The button doesn’t turn though which at first is quite surprising, as this is usually the go-to implementation for navigation. Once you get used to it, however, the tap functionality works just fine.

The simple display built into the watch face is also easy to use as unlike with the Garmin, it doesn’t try to fit too much information on the screen at any one time. Instead, it just shows the main pieces of information for each function, which is all you really need on a watch that isn’t intended to be a full smartwatch.

Not only does this device offer a tonne of functionality, but it also does so while remaining simple and stylish which is rare to see in a hybrid.

amazon

Tech Specs
Size: Case: 36mm, 40mm, Case thickness: 13mm, Strap: 18mm (36mm), 20mm (40mm)
Construction: Casing: Stainless steel, Strap: Silicone, leather
Battery life: Standard mode: 25 days, Low power mode: 45 days
Features: Heart rate monitor, sleep tracking, multisport tracking, GPS, fitness monitoring
The Pros
Multiple size options
Not too big
Should like good on most wrists
Durable
Multiple strap options
Stylish design
Multiple modes
Long battery life with both modes
Excellent range of features
Includes a heart rate monitor
Includes sleep tracking
Includes GPS
The Cons
Both options are fairly small
36mm option might not look good on very large wrists
Might not be metal strap options available

3. Misfit Command Hybrid Smartwatch (Best Budget)

Misfit Command Hybrid SmartwatchView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.3/5.0

The Misfit Command has become one of the most talked about hybrid smartwatches available thanks to its great looks and affordable price tag. It isn’t the most feature-rich hybrid you can buy but it is still a very capable product nonetheless.

Design

Firstly, it has to be said that this hybrid has one of the nicest watch faces of any smartwatch. It may be relatively simple, but it gives the Misfit Command a very classy look that makes the device look very high-end.

There is one issue with the watch face though in that the hour markers are not illuminated. Most of the time this isn’t an issue as they are white and are usually clearly visible, however, in total darkness, you won’t be able to see the time at all.

The date system is also a little quirky. Between 12 o’clock and 6 o’clock are the numbers 1-31 and between 7 o’clock and 11 o’clock are the days of the week. To view the date you press the upper button on the watch which causes the hands to point at the date for a few seconds before returning to show the time. This is an interesting implementation that is quite fun to watch, however, it is somewhat slower than the conventional method used on most watches.

The watch is also on the larger side for a hybrid with a case size of 44mm. Although this makes the device larger than the average wristwatch it does well not to feel too clumsy on the wrist and it should be fine to wear even if you have smaller wrists.

The device is also really well built and uses a range of premium materials such as stainless steel for the casing and aluminum for the watch face. There are a number of different strap options as well with silicone and steel variants being the main ones on offer. All of these materials are very durable too, meaning the device should last a long time and survive various knocks and impacts with ease.

One criticism about the straps though is that they come with a quick-release latch that is known to dig into the wrist when the watch is done up tight. The obvious solution here is to just loosen the strap but as this device is designed for fitness, it will need to be tight at times.

If you encounter this problem yourself you can always swap the strap for a different one but the fact that Misfit didn’t notice this design flaw before bringing the product to market is pretty surprising.

The water-resistance on this watch is really good though and like the previous two hybrids in this guide, it will be fine to use this device in a body of water up to 50 meters deep.

Battery life

The battery life of this smartwatch is exceptional thanks to its non-rechargeable battery that can last up to a year before needing to be replaced. This gives the Misfit Command the best battery life of any watch on this list, however, it does mean that you will need to go and buy a new battery every year.

Features

As mentioned, the Misfit Command isn’t the most feature-rich hybrid and this is evident in the lack of tracking functionality it has. Although the device is capable of monitoring sleep and fitness, there is no heart rate monitor on the Command which is a shame.

The fitness monitoring is also rather simple and, therefore, unable to compete with the likes of the Nokia Steel or the Vivomove. It will get the job done for most people but if you would like in-depth statistics and solid advice on how to improve, this isn’t the watch for you. Instead, it is much better suited to those who just want a nice looking watch that offers some functionality for tracking basic fitness statistics.

There isn’t a digital display on this device either. Notification handling is done by vibration and, therefore, you will still need to take out your phone to read and respond to anything.

One of the more unique features of this device, however, is its multipurpose button which can be used to perform a variety of different tasks including taking pictures, playing music, and finding your phone.

A decent, good looking watch with enough features to warrant it’s inclusion in this list. It should, however, be seen as a traditional watch with a few smart features rather than a full hybrid.

amazon

Tech Specs
Size: Case: 44mm, Case thickness: 15mm, Strap: 20mm
Construction: Casing: Stainless steel, Face: Aluminum, Strap: Silicone, stainless steel
Battery life: 1 year (non-rechargeable)
Features: Sleep tracking, activity monitoring, picture taking
The Pros
Should like good on most wrists
Strap size is universal
Durable
Multiple strap options
Stylish design
Long battery life
Replaceable battery
Includes sleep tracking
Has a multipurpose button
The Cons
Might be too big for smaller wrists
Quite chunky
Non-rechargeable
No heart rate monitor

4. Withings Steel HR Sport Smartwatch (Top Pick)

Withings Steel HR Sport SmartwatchView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.8/5.0

If you like the Nokia Steel HR but are after something with an even bigger focus on sports performance, the Withings Steel HR Sport could be for you. Although it shares a lot of similarities with the standard Steel HR, there are also some very noticeable changes both in appearance and in features that put this watch more or less in a category of its own.

Design

This watch shares a similar design to the standard model with a slim, compact form-factor that will look good on pretty much any wrist regardless of size. Unlike the standard model, however, this device only comes in a 40mm version so there is no 36mm option here.

The casing is still made of stainless steel, however, there is a more prominent bezel on this device that has the minutes 5, 10, 15, etc engraved into it. This is a nice change in style that shows this device is not intended to be as minimalist as the previous Steel HR.

The watch face, however, is more or less the same with the only obvious change being that the hands have red accents on them to give the watch a more sporty look. This is a subtle but nice touch that really helps the watch face stand out.

There is also a new strap on this device which looks great and has a much more sporty appearance than the straps used on the regular device. The strap is also more comfortable than those options as well, albeit at the expense of looking a little less premium.

It is the only strap available for this product though, so if you don’t like it, unfortunately, you will still have to buy it before swapping it out for something else. This isn’t the end of the world but it is an additional expense worth thinking about.

It also keeps the same level of water resistance as the standard model as well, meaning the device is fine to use in up to 50 meters of water.

Battery life

The battery life is exactly the same on this device as it is on the standard Steel HR. Therefore, you get the same two modes as on the regular device with a standard mode lasting 25 days and a low power mode lasting up to 45 days.

Again, your best bet is to just use the device in the standard mode as 25 days is still an excellent amount of battery life and it will mean you can use the full features of this device at all times.

Features

Speaking of features, this is another area that has seen some changes over the regular model. While you still get the same heart rate monitoring, sleep tracking, etc as you would on the standard Steel HR, there is also a much more advanced fitness monitoring system that can provide accurate assessments on your progress through the accompanying app.

This is a great feature as it is like having a makeshift personal trainer in your pocket that you can check in with to see how you are doing.

Aside from this though, the device remains largely the same in this department, offering the same display and button functionality as the regular Steel HR. This means that once again, you are faced with having to get used to the slightly annoying navigation system implemented on both of these devices. It isn’t terrible and it’s certainly usable but it does take some time to figure out.

Depending on your requirements for a hybrid smartwatch, this is arguably a better option than the standard Steel HR. Not only does it have more features than the original Steel HR, but it is also more comfortable and more durable. It is also a lot bolder than the original though, so if you are after something a bit more conservative, the standard model might be a better way to go.

amazon

Tech Specs
Size: Case: 40mm, Case thickness: 13mm, Strap: 20mm
Construction: Casing: Stainless steel, Strap: Silicone
Battery life: Standard mode: 25 days, Low power mode: 45 days
Features: Heart rate monitor, sleep tracking, multisport tracking, GPS, fitness monitoring & assessment
The Pros
Not too big
Should like good on most wrists
Strap size is universal
Durable
Stylish design
Multiple modes
Long battery life with both modes
Excellent range of features
Includes a heart rate monitor
Includes sleep tracking
Includes GPS
The Cons
Limited strap options

5. MyKronoz ZeTime Petite Premium Hybrid Smartwatch

MyKronoz ZeTime Petite Premium Hybrid SmartwatchView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.5/5.0

The MyKronoz ZeTime Petite Premium is a compact hybrid that offers both a full-face display and mechanical hands. It started out as a Kick starter campaign where it received funding of around $5 million from backers all over the world.

Nowadays there are multiple versions of the ZeTime available but we have selected the Petite Premium as our pick of the bunch for reasons we will now get into.

Design

One of the first things you will notice when you hold this smartwatch is just how well built it is. The casing is made from stainless steel and you can tell it has been very precisely machined to keep everything inside it tight and snug. The glass used to cover the watch face is also very premium and has been crafted from sapphire giving it a much higher level of durability than regular glass.

The size of the case is 39mm which is relatively small for a smartwatch but this is the Petite model so that is intentional. We picked this model as it is arguably the best all-rounder in terms of size, however, if you feel as though this is too small for you, a 44mm option is also available.

As for the watch face, there is a full-screen display in it much like you would get from a regular smartwatch. On top of this, are two mechanical hands which are really the only reason this is considered a hybrid smartwatch rather than a regular one.

Most hybrids are born from an analog foundation with some smart features added to make them more functional, but this watch has taken the opposite approach, starting as a smartwatch and then having analog features added to it. This gives the watch increased functionality in certain areas but also hinders it in others, which we will get to in the features section.

This watch is also water resistant up to 50 meters, keeping it on par with the rest of the devices on this list. This means that using this watch while swimming or taking a shower will be perfectly fine.

Battery life

The battery life of this device is extremely variable. If you use the device a lot and have the display on often, you can expect to get about 2 days out of the device before needing to charge it. If, however, you hardly use the display at all and use the watch more like a traditional analog watch, you can get about 30 days or power out of it before it eventually gives up.

Features

There are a number of great features on this watch such as heart rate monitoring, sleep tracking, GPS, activity monitoring, and, of course, the full-screen display. There is also a rotating crown that can be used to navigate through the menus of the watch and in many ways, this is preferable to swiping across the display itself.

As the device uses analog hands rather than digital ones, MyKronoz has also developed its own OS to compensate. It works pretty well and if you are familiar with Wear OS, you should have no issues getting used to it as the two systems are quite similar.

What’s interesting about this OS, however, is how MyKronoz has built it to work with the analog hands. For example, when you want to view a message the hands automatically move to the 9:15 position to create a horizontal line out of the way of the message itself. It’s a nice feature to have and it shows that MyKronoz has really put some time into the user experience of this device.

Unfortunately, though, the OS isn’t perfect and there have been numerous reports of lag on the device. The fact that this watch uses a proprietary OS also means that the app choice is more limited too.

On paper, this is a great device with an impressive list of specs that would rival most full-blown smartwatches. The problem, however, is that in practice some of these features are a little bit gimmicky and not really that useful. Having said that, it still does a lot of things well and the build quality is exceptional.

amazon

Tech Specs
Size: Case: 39mm, Case thickness: 13mm, Strap: 18mm
Construction: Casing: Stainless steel, Glass: Sapphire, Strap: Leather, silicone
Battery life: 2-30 days
Features: Heart rate monitor, sleep tracking, GPS, fitness monitoring, full-screen display
The Pros
Should like good on most wrists
Large watch face
Durable
Stylish design
Sapphire doesn’t scratch easily
Decent battery life
Excellent range of features
Includes a heart rate monitor
Includes sleep tracking
Includes GPS
The Cons
Might be too large for people with smaller wrists
The display is a bit laggy
OS is little lacking in certain areas
2/51 rating