fossil gen 5e smartwatch on wrist

Credit: Fossil

  • The new Fossil Gen 5E smartwatches offer most of the Gen 5’s features in a cheaper package.
  • Unlike the original Gen 5, the Gen 5E comes in two sizes: 44mm and 42mm.
  • The Gen 5E misses out on standalone GPS, an altimeter, and more.

Fossil makes some of our favorite Wear OS watches, but there’s just one problem — they usually only come in one size. That’s not helpful for those who have smaller-than-average wrists. Today, the company is releasing the Fossil Gen 5E smartwatch (the ‘E’ is for ‘Essential’), a cheaper take on the original that comes in multiple sizes.

You can buy the Fossil Gen 5E smartwatch in the traditional 44mm size or opt for the smaller 42mm variant. Whichever size you choose, you’ll still have the same 1.19-inch AMOLED display at 328ppi. The only other difference between the two models is strap sizing. The 44mm model has 22mm straps while the 42mm model has 18mm straps. Thickness is the same on both at 12mm.

All Gen 5E models also come with a physical pusher on the right side of the case, though it’s not rotatable like on other Wear OS watches.

The Gen 5E is mostly the same smartwatch as the Gen 5. It has a built-in speaker for receiving calls on your wrist, custom battery modes to help Wear OS last a bit longer, NFC for Google Pay, the same Snapdragon 3100 chipset, 4GB of storage (down from 8GB in the Gen 5), and 1GB of RAM. I wouldn’t worry too much about the lack of a Snapdragon 4100 processor here; my Gen 5 smartwatch is still running smoothly on the older chip.

Fitness features are mostly the same as the Gen 5, with a few caveats. The Fossil Gen 5E smartwatches have connected GPS, not standalone GPS. That means you’ll need to take your phone with you on a run to get accurate distance data. It also doesn’t come with an altimeter, a compass, or an ambient light sensor.

If that all sounds good to you, the Fossil Gen 5E is available now for $249. That’s a $46 savings from the Gen 5’s current $295 price.

Fossil Gen 5E smartwatch A pared-down Gen 5 at a cheaper price
The Fossil Gen 5E smartwatch is just like the Gen 5, only it comes in more sizes and costs about $45 less. It drops a few features with that reduced price, however.

I will note that the Fossil Gen 5 goes on sale quite frequently on Amazon and even Fossil.com. We’ve seen it drop all the way down to $199 in the past. Of course, that reduced price doesn’t make up for the fact that it’s only available in one size.

There’s plenty of competition in the Wear OS space right now even if we haven’t seen many new releases as of late. The Skagen Falster 3 comes to mind, as it’s also under the Fossil Group brand and comes in the 42mm size. The Gen 5E might be best suited for those who really like the look of the standard Gen 5 but just want something a bit smaller.

Next: The best Fossil smartwatches you can buy

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