Apple Watch Series 6 Blue AluminumSource: Daniel Bader / Android Central

Best Apple Watch iMore 2020

As Apple fans, there is nothing we won't do to test every single one of the company's products to ensure that it does everything we want it to. We've owned every single version of Apple Watch since Series 0 and know which one is just right for most people. The Apple Watch Series 6 with GPS is the most advanced Apple Watch the company has ever made. It's got the largest screen, the best quality display, and the most sensors of any previous model. It's a life improver and a lifesaver.

Best Overall: Apple Watch Series 6 with GPS

Apple Watch Series 5Source: Rene Ritchie/iMore

Because Apple's 2020 model Apple Watch features an always-on altimeter and a blood oxygen monitor (Sp02), it replaces the Series 5 as our pick for the best Apple Watch of all time. Because of the price, the aluminum-bodied Apple Watch Series 6 with GPS is our pick best all-around model. It doesn't have cellular, but from our personal experience with all models of Apple Watch, the average user doesn't need cellular (we almost always bring our phones with us anyway). It's positioned as the Apple Watch that everyone can use without costing as much as one with more advanced features (or materials).

It is important to point out that Family Setup requires an Apple Watch with Cellular, so if you are planning on buying an Apple Watch for a family member or think you may someday hand it down to a family member to use with Family Setup, you should not buy this version of the Series 6, you should buy the Apple Watch GPS + Cellular model.

Pros:

  • Best display
  • Fastest processor
  • Heart rate sensor
  • Fall detection
  • ECG monitor
  • Sp02 monitor
  • Longest battery life
  • Always-on altimeter

Cons:

  • iPhone SE is cheaper
  • Tethered to iPhone

Best Overall

Apple Watch Series 6 with GPS

The perfect Apple Watch for most people at the best price.

Whether you're just getting started with wearables or are upgrading from a previous model Apple Watch, the aluminum Series 6 with GPS has the most features for the best price.

Best Value: Apple Watch SE GPS + Cellular

Apple Watch Series 3Source: iMore

Apple's newest addition to the Apple Watch lineup, the Apple Watch SE, is positioned to be the model for most people. I personally thing the blood oxygen monitor makes the Apple Watch Series 6 the best for most people, but it's also more expensive, which is why the SE is so incredible. It has a heart rate monitor, emergency SOS alert, Fall Detection, an always-on altimeter, and more. It also has the same processor chip as the Apple Watch Series 5, though it doesn't have an always-on display. It also does not have an ECG monitor, but it's only $80 more than the Apple Watch Series 3 and the cellular upgrade is only $50 instead of $100. It is has the most features at the lowest price.

Pros:

  • Most features for the price
  • Fast processor
  • Variety of options

Cons:

  • No Sp02 monitor
  • No ECG monitor

Best Value

Apple Watch SE GPS + Cellular

The least expensive Apple Watch you can buy, but is still a fantastic beast.

If you're looking for a first step into the Apple Watch ecosystem or just want to spend as little as possible, the Series 3 is a great option.

Best for Runners: Apple Watch Series 6 GPS + Cellular

Apple Watch Nike 6Source: Nike

Cellular data is a great addition to the Apple Watch, letting you leave your iPhone behind when going on a run, visiting the grocery store, working outside, swimming, and more. It's also the only Apple Watch that you can stream Apple Music and Radio on, which is ideal when you want to go on a long run but don't want to bring your iPhone with you. This 2020 model also has an always-on display that's brighter than last year's model for better viewing in direct sunlight and international emergency calling (even if you don't have an active cellular plan).

Pros:

  • Untethered from iPhone
  • Comes in Stainless Steel option
  • Streams Apple Music directly
  • Always-on display
  • International emergency calling even without a cellular plan

Cons:

  • More expensive
  • Additional monthly cellular cost

Best for Runners

Apple Watch Series 6 GPS + Cellular

The Apple Watch Series 6 GPS + Cellular has everything great about the GPS-only model without needing your iPhone nearby.

If you have the extra cash and want cellular, Apple Music on your watch, the stainless steel material, and more band options out of the box, check out the Series 6 GPS + Cellular model.

Best Status Symbol: Apple Watch Series 6 Hermès

Apple Watch HermésSource: iMore

The Hermès line of Apple Watch is incredibly exclusive and will definitely let the world know that you know luxury. The only way to get the exclusive Hermès-designed watch face is to buy from the series directly (no cheating and buying an after-market Hermès band). Each band is crafted from quality leather and comes in a variety of eye-catching colorways. The casing material is only available in stainless steel, and all Hermès Apple Watches are GPS + Cellular.

Pros:

  • Beautifully designed bands
  • Exclusive Hermès-designed Apple Watch face

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Only comes in cellular model

Best Status Symbol

Apple Watch Series 6 Hermès

You've got the money, and now you've got the look to prove it. Let your rich flag fly.

If money is no object, and you want people to know that, investing in the Apple Watch Hermès series will show off your status, while also giving you all the benefits of the best Apple Watch around.

Classy luxury: Apple Watch Series 6 Titanium Edition

Apple Watch Space Black TitaniumSource: iMore

The Titanium Edition Apple Watch is like the well-bred, financially independent cousin of the aluminum series. It's got a familiar brushed metal look, but the colors are a little richer ... a little deeper. It comes in titanium or Space Black. It's the perfect watch for someone wanting to make a very subtle statement. "I can afford a Ferrari, but I choose to drive a BMW because I'm classy like that."

Pros:

  • Deep rich metal look
  • Stronger than aluminum or stainless steel
  • Serious status symbol

Cons:

  • Only two color options
  • Only comes in cellular model

Classy luxury

Apple Watch Series 6 Titanium Edition

It's the first class version of Apple Watch.

If you're the type of person that doesn't show off your Benjamins but still like to look well put-together, this is a luxury watch for your understated tastes.

Budget option: Apple Watch Series 3

Apple Watch Series 3Source: iMore

The Series 3 was the best Apple Watch until the Series 4 knocked it off its podium, and I don't mean that just because of the year-over-year upgrade. The Apple Watch Series 3 is a solid foundation for anyone that wants an Apple Watch and doesn't want to pay a premium price. At this point, the Apple Watch Series 3 is a few years old and hasn't seen any upgrades, but it is still a solid entry-level model for those on a budget. It has a heart rate sensor, altimeter, step tracker, and GPS. It also has all-day battery life and water-resistance. It's got a smaller display and 2mm smaller casing and doesn't support super complications, but it's also $200 cheaper.

It's important to point out that Apple Watch Series 3 is no longer available as a Cellular option, so if you're planning on buying this for someone in your Family Setup, or if you think you want to someday pass it down to a family member for the purpose of Family Setup, don't buy this Apple Watch.

Pros:

  • Least expensive model
  • Excellent tech for the price
  • Fits the same bands

Cons:

  • No ECG, always-on display or fall detection
  • Processor is years old

Budget option

Apple Watch Series 3

The least expensive you can buy if you're looking to get into Apple Watch and are on a tight budget.

If you're looking for a first step into the Apple Watch ecosystem or just want to spend as little as possible, the Series 3 is a great option.

Bottom line

Because of its entry-level price for the most advanced features, the aluminum-bodied Apple Watch Series 6 with GPS is the best all-around model. It doesn't have cellular, but from our personal experience with all models of Apple Watch, the average user doesn't need cellular (we almost always bring our phones with us anyway). It's positioned as the Apple Watch that everyone can use without costing as much as one with more advanced features (or materials).

Credits — The team that worked on this guide

Lory Gil is the Managing Editor at iMore and has been wearing an Apple Watch since 2015. She currently owns the Series 4. She never leaves home without it and loves those new super complications.

Rene Ritchie is iMore's resident Apple analyst. He owns every single version of Apple Watch and every single model. He's also one of the few people that got the ceramic Series 3. If there's anyone in the world with more Apple Watch bands out there, we'd like to see it.

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