Emporio Armani Connected 2018 gets GPS, HR tracking and payments

The designer smartwatch has been treated to some real spec boosts
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Emporio Armani's Connected smartwatch is no longer just a pretty face. The 2018 edition of the Connected Wear watch is up for pre-order and will go on sale in September with big tech upgrades - NFC payments, built-in GPS and heart rate tracking.

That puts the Emporio Armani Connected up there with the Apple Watch as a real wrist all-rounder especially on the sports front. Plus payments is something we've been asking for on Fossil Group watches for months and months. What's nice is that we can now expect to see these features show up on Wear smartwatches from Fossil, Diesel, Michael Kors etc.

Wareable verdict: Emporio Armani Connected (2018) review

There's also Google Assistant voice controls and waterproofing to 3 ATM so it's swimmer friendly. The on-wrist payments are handled by Google Pay worldwide and Alipay in China; it's the Mobvoi app store and Mobvoi Assistant for voice in China.

Emporio Armani Connected 2018 gets GPS, HR tracking and payments

Features like customisable watch faces (with new additions), smartphone alerts and music controls have stayed put from last year's Connected. There's a 1.19-inch AMOLED screen, it runs Wear OS and it's powered by a Snapdragon Wear 2100. Battery life is estimated at one to two days.

It's not all about specs, though, Emporio Armani has built another stylish smartwatch. It's a 43 x 49mm watch made from stainless steel with elegant 20mm lugs, a range of colour finishes (silver, black, blue, green and rose gold) and both rubber and link bracelets to choose from.

The new Emporio Armani Connected 2018 starts at $295 with styles at $345 and $395 to consider, it's available to pre-order now and it goes on sale in September from Armani stores, Armani online and 'selected retailers'.

TAGGED Wear OS Fashion

How we test


Sophie was Wareable's associate editor. She joined the team from Stuff magazine where she was an in-house reviewer. For three and a half years, she tested every smartphone, tablet, and robot vacuum that mattered. 

A fan of thoughtful design, innovative apps, and that Spike Jonze film, she is currently wondering how many fitness tracker reviews it will take to get her fit. Current bet: 19.

Sophie has also written for a host of sites, including Metro, the Evening Standard, the Times, the Telegraph, Little White Lies, the Press Association and the Debrief.

She now works for Wired.

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