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Fossil Gen 7 wishlist: All the features I want to see
Fossil’s core smartwatch series hasn’t changed much over the years. The Fossil Gen 6 launched with the traditional rounded face and large pushers. Still, considerable advancements were made beneath the skin over the Gen 5 with the addition of a blood oxygen sensor and new Snapdragon silicon. While these improvements were welcome, the Gen 6 ultimately fell short of its contemporaries in several arenas. But will the Fossil Gen 7 put up more of a fight? Here are all the upgrades and changes I want to see with the Fossil Gen 7.
A clear software update roadmap (with commitments)
It might seem obvious that the Fossil Gen 7 will launch with the latest version of Wear OS, but Fossil’s lengthy Wear OS 3 update rollout made us a little skittish. We understand that Google required manufacturers to develop new companion apps to facilitate the upgrade. Now that the Fossil app is available, we should hope for more rapid OS updates when they’re ready. However, we would like Fossil to issue a software update commitment — like Samsung has done with the Galaxy Watch — when it launches the Gen 7.
Better battery life
While the Fossil Gen 6 did see a charging speed upgrade over the Gen 5, it also packed a slightly smaller battery. This is the wrong way to go, even with the more efficient chipset in use. During our review, the Fossil Gen 6 lasted for a full 24 hours with conservative usage, and when employing the GPS, that number plummets. Either way, that’s not nearly enough compared to devices from Garmin and Fitbit, or longer-living Wear OS alternatives like the Galaxy Watch 6. With the Fossil Gen 7, we’d like to see Fossil Group focus on the device’s battery life, matching its well-known battery-saving modes with capable hardware.
More accurate sleep tracking
Plenty of smartwatches track sleep and do it well, but the Fossil Gen 6 is not one of them. In our review, Eric Zeman found that the watch frequently glossed over light sleep and moments of restlessness — two phases that are as important in understanding sleep quality as deep sleep and REM. Sleep is important when gauging day-to-day health, so having reliable data to make an informed decision is vital. We understand that the Fossil Gen 7 probably won’t be a fitness-first smartwatch, but there’s no excuse for getting the basics wrong.
A larger display
I’ve no real problem with the Fossil Gen 6’s display. However, we’d like to see some advancements in this area. The Fossil Gen 6 uses the Gen 5’s 1.28-inch screen with minor upgrades. It’s a fine display, but larger options wouldn’t go amiss. Screen upgrades to match the chipset bump would make the Gen 7 line an attractive, smart alternative to the Samsung Galaxy series.
Upgraded water resistance
For general use, 3ATM water resistance is just fine. If you’re a swimmer or snorkeler, you might not feel comfortable with the Gen 6’s shallow rating. We’d like to see the Gen 7 upgraded to 5ATM spec, in line with its contemporaries, much cheaper watches, and other devices in the Fossil Group stable. It’s not a major issue, but if other watches in the same price range pack a better rating, why settle for the Fossil?
Which upgrade would you like to see most on the Fossil Gen 7?
Will there be a Fossil Gen 7?
We’d be surprised if Fossil shuts up its smartwatch shop, especially since it’s actively invested in the Wear OS update drive. Thanks to its sequential generation-based system, Fossil’s smartwatch naming scheme hasn’t sprung a major surprise in ages. Considering the Fossil Gen 6 was the last launch, we can safely assume the next iteration will bear the Gen 7 label.
As for a possible release date, the Fossil Gen 5 models debuted in August 2019, about a year after the Gen 4 lineup. The Gen 6 made its debut in September 2021. But as we head deeper into 2023, there’s still no sign of the product or hint of an announcement from Fossil itself. It now seems unlikely that we’ll see the Gen 7 debut this year, with 2024 looking a more likely option.
Should you wait for the Fossil Gen 7?
How long are you prepared to wait? With no clear indication of when the Fossil Gen 7 will launch, we can’t recommend you lose sleep over it. There’s no concrete indication of what the device could bring. Once we know more about the Gen 7, we can weigh the pros and cons and provide a more in-depth answer. For now, there are plenty of capable devices on the market if you need a watch today.
The Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 ($162.57 at Amazon) is a more rounded alternative with a keen focus on wellness monitoring and smart features. Although the Galaxy Watch 6 ($299.99 at Samsung) is also an option, it’s a little pricier. Seekers of a pure Wear OS experience can take a punt on the Google Pixel Watch ($329 at Amazon) — one of the best-looking smartwatches available right now. There’s also the Withings ScanWatch 2 ($349.95 at Amazon)for those bent on monitoring their health with a watch that oozes analog style.