Holiday gift ideas: Stylish wearables that give back all year

I vividly remember owning a calculator watch back in the early 1980s. I was sure it was the coolest thing ever and I was going to ace all my math tests. It didn't quite work out that way, but from an early age, I knew I wanted a watch that did more than just tell time.

Wearable technology has come a long way, but you can't say we didn't see it coming. Comic book detective Dick Tracy made calls from his watch, and in 2017, we have watches that have a cellphone built in. What a great time to be alive.

- Apple Watch Series 3

What is it: Apple's third-generation watch is not only waterproof, but it also has built-in LTE and GPS. So you can make and take calls, even when you leave your phone at home. The Apple Watch is also one of the most popular fitness wearables when coupled with the Apple iOS Health app. Plus it's a heck of a smartwatch, especially if you're an iPhone user.

Who is it for: Apple aficionados who want a watch or fitness wearable.

How much does it cost: Starts at $329.

Where can I get it: Apple stores and

- Samsung Gear S3 frontier

What is it: The best smartwatch for Android users that I've come across. The Gear S3 is a great-looking watch that also has LTE and GPS. I think the best thing going for the S3 is its round screen and some great-looking watch faces, plus a battery that will run for days between charges.

Who is it for: Watch-wearing Android users (but it syncs with iOS too).

How much does it cost: $299.99.

Where can I get it:, Amazon and J.C. Penney.

- Fitbit Ionic

What is it: A pretty serious attempt at a Fitbit smartwatch. The Ionic has great fitness tracking with continuous and sleep tracking, onboard storage for music, built-in GPS and four-plus days of battery life. It can auto-detect your workouts and start tracking. The app store is in the future, so app selection is limited. Buy this one for the fitness tracking, not smartwatch features.

Who is it for: Fitbit wearers and people who work out regularly.

How much does it cost: $299.99.

Where can I get it:, Amazon, Best Buy, REI, Target and Wal-Mart.

- Fitbit Alta HR

What is it: A small, light, really good fitness monitor that includes heart rate monitoring as well as some connected features to give you notifications from your smartphone. The Alta HR also has interchangeable bands so you can coordinate it with your lifestyle. It can track steps, calories burned and distance, and it will automatically start to track when you begin exercising.

Who is it for: Anyone who works out, or aspires to work out.

How much does it cost: $149.99.

Where can I get it:, Amazon, Best Buy, Target and Wal-Mart.

- TaoTronics Bike Phone Mount

What is it: Serious bike riders want their phones front and center when they ride. This is a universal bike mount for your phone. You clamp the sides around any smartphone and then stretch rubber loops around each corner of the phone for a rock-solid mount that'll keep your phone handy for using GPS or ride-tracking apps.

Who is it for: Bike riders, especially those who love to ride for miles and miles.

How much does it cost: $12.99.

Where can I get it:

- Nokia Steel

What is it: A smartwatch that looks nothing like a smartwatch. It has an analog face that's hiding its sensors. It will track your steps, calories burned and even track your sleep. It also has a silent alarm. But since it has no screen, you'll have to pair it with your smartphone to read any of the data. Nokia says the battery will last eight months.

Who is it for: Someone who fancies analog watches that can count steps and track sleep patterns.

How much does it cost: $129.99.

Where can I get it: and Best Buy.

©2017 The Dallas Morning News
Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.
Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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