Garmin has released a new smartwatch called the Lily, and its main selling point is that it’s designed by women, for women. The Sport Edition, which is made of aluminum and has a silicone band, costs $199, while the stainless steel Classic Edition is $250 and comes with a leather band.
Garmin claims it’s “the smartwatch women have been waiting for,” which seems based on its size and design, which is very fashion-forward. However, as reviewer Lily Katz from Android Authority points out in her review of the Lily, the watch may have given up a few important features to achieve those looks.
One of the Lily’s main selling points is that it’s small. It’s circular, with a diameter of 34.5mm, whereas the smaller 40mm Apple Watch SE is a 40mm by 34mm rectangle. Area-wise, that means the Apple Watch takes up 1,360 square millimeters on your wrist, while the Lily only takes 935. By my calculations, that means the Lily will cover 31 percent less of your wrist. It’s Garmin’s smallest smartwatch, and I’d imagine it’d look comically small next to the company’s rugged Fenix watches.
The watch is circular, to look more like a “classic” non-smartwatch, and it has a patterned background. The screen is touch-sensitive, but monochromatic, which seems a bit lacking when similarly-priced offerings from Apple, Fitbit, and Samsung all have color screens. That said, it’s probably to help preserve battery life, as Garmin claims it should get up to five days, which is pretty impressive given its size.
If the watch’s band design is important to you, though, you may want to look elsewhere: the Lily’s straps are proprietary, and it doesn’t seem like Garmin is selling any more on its store yet. Additionally, you can’t mix and match bands — the colors are matched to the case.
Garmin focuses a lot on fitness and wellness tracking with its smartwatches, and the Lily can track steps, workouts, sleep, stress levels, blood oxygen saturation, periods, and pregnancies. Of course, none of those things are unique to this smartwatch — most of Garmin’s other smartwatches feature the fitness tracking, and there are at least two others that feature the period and pregnancy tracking.
This means you have to decide whether you like the Lily’s looks enough to make some trade-offs. The Lily doesn’t have GPS, offline music, or Garmin Pay built-in like Garmin’s own Venu Sq, which sells for the same price. There are also other $200-ish smartwatches from other brands that are more feature-rich than the Lily, but to some they may not look as nice. A smartwatch could have all the features in the world, but be totally useless if you find it too ugly to wear.
There’s also not a lot of competing smartwatches that are as small as the Lily, so buyers concerned with having something take up the bulk of their wrist may also be interested. It’s just worth considering what features you’re willing to give up, and whether you’re willing to deal with some of the other caveats reviewers have found. The watch is available now from Garmin’s website.