For fans of mechanical wristwatches, the smartwatch revolution presents a conundrum. You want the functionality, utility and comfort of a digital, connected smartwatch. But you also want the look and feel of a steel sports watch, say — something that shows your passion for the horological, style and general tactility that comes with a traditional timepiece.
Enter the Citizen CZ Smart. This do-it-all smartwatch pairs a stainless steel case and bracelet and aluminum top ring with a color touchscreen dial. It’s powered by Wear OS by Google, so it’s compatible with both iPhone and Android phones. In short, this is a watch designed so that you can have your cake and eat it too: the look and feel of a traditional mechanical watch, and all the useful extras of a smartwatch. We spent a week with the CZ Smart on our wrist and found its two-worlds-in-one nature sure to please tech-loving watch nerds — or just anyone who loves telling time and also staying digitally connected.Gear Patrol Studios
From the Brand
"CZ Smart from Citizen is genius incognito. Inspired by the rich design of Citizen’s iconic sport technical timepieces, CZ Smart marries modern technologies with the style and quality you expect from Citizen. The sport edition features a color touchscreen dial and black anodized aluminum top ring, framed and finished with a gunmetal, ion-plated stainless steel case and bracelet. CZ Smart also features a 46mm three-piece case construction and a rugged bezel design. Powered with Wear OS by Google™, CZ Smart is compatible with both iPhone® and Android™ phones to fit your lifestyle. Plus, the versatile menu of dials, designed exclusively for CZ Smart, gives you all the information you need at your fingertips."
What We Like
Right out of the box, the CZ Smart offered useful features to our tester. Setup was easy — just power up the watch, download the Wear OS app on your phone, and pair — and in no time the watch was on-wrist, helping navigate a day at work from home.Gear Patrol Studios
Though the CZ Smart doesn’t look the part of a smartwatch (it’s not glossy or square, for instance), it packs an immediate punch for efficiency and focus. Alarms, calendars, agendas and contacts sync directly from your phone to give you a rolodex right on your arm — just swipe left, right, up or down, or press its crown, to navigate most functions. Its 8GB of memory can store plenty of apps, photos and more. And its built-in speaker and Bluetooth connectivity allow you to receive and answer calls (and texts if you have an Android phone) right through the watch.
Out for cocktails before dinner, our tester found the CZ Smart a strong proxy for a steel sports watch. Its 46mm three-piece steel case is large but not bulky; its aluminum top ring adds a cool, traditional look to its bezel; and its color touchscreen dial, which has multiple different aesthetic options, is so traditional looking and clean that it might have surprised a fellow barfly when it lit up with a text notification from our tester’s date.Gear Patrol Studios
The CZ Smart performed just as well out in the field. On a camping trip, its stainless steel construction and aluminum topring felt hardy and tough. GPS tracking worked great on a hike. So did the watch's step tracker. Sleep tracking even proved that our tester sleeps better in the Great Outdoors — go figure. And multi-day battery modes stretch its lifespan to a few days (extended mode) or a week-plus (time-only mode).Gear Patrol StudiosGear Patrol Studios
Who It’s For
The CZ Smart is for the mechanical and/or traditional watch lover who wants to try a smartwatch but who doesn’t want to blend in with the Apple watch crowd. Any Citizen lover would surely be happy to add it to their collection. Or even a smartwatch user who wants to find a watch that’s more upscale and traditional looking for going out on the town, business meetings, weddings and more.
The Citizen CZ Smart combines a top-line smartwatch OS system with easy functionality and traditional sports watch looks. In a category that’s all too often boring and tech-centric, the CZ Smart is a breath of fresh air for watch-lovers of all varieties. Plus, from now through 11/29, the CZ Smart is on sale for $100 off.
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