9 Best Tactical Smartwatches For Military & Outdoor Use

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Be it in a warzone or in adventure sports, timing is everything. Besides that, the knowledge of surroundings also helps in conquering a tough task. A tactical smartwatch can help in both cases, as it can show you accurate time as well as help you understand your surroundings better with its built-in navigational sensors like GPS, Compass, Altimeter, and Barometer.

Moreover, these watches are of military-grade standards that are built to last long and therefore can survive in extreme conditions like underwater, mountains, warzones, and more. Making them fit for soldiers and adventure enthusiasts who are always in the middle of some action.

However, finding a good tactical smartwatch is not as easy as it may sound, and therefore in this article, I share with you the best rugged and tactical smartwatches that will make you a better tactician and help achieve all your goals.

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Best Military-Grade Smartwatch Comparison Table





Best Tactical Smartwatch

Best Tactical Smartwatch

Garmin Tactix 7 Pro

  • TOPO maps

  • 10 ATM Water-resistant

  • Advanced tactical features 

Best Rugged Military Watch

G-shock military watch

Casio G-Shock Mudmaster

  • Atomic timekeeping

  • Highly durable

  • Solar charging

Best Suunto Military Grade Smartwatch

Suunto Military Grade Smartwatch

Suunto 9 Baro

  • Touch display

  • 100M water resistance

  • ABC sensors

Affordable Toughest Tactical Watch

affordable toughest tactical watch

Suunto Core

  • Waterproof up to 100 meters

  • Weather change alert

  • Sunrise and sunset alert

The Best Tactical Smartwatches

If you prefer watching a video over reading text then have a look at my latest video on the best military smartwatch.

1. Garmin Tactix 7 Pro

garmin tactix 7 pro

The first smartwatch that I would like to recommend is the Garmin Tactix 7 Pro. It is regarded as one of the best tactical watches for men made to date. With military-grade durability and tactical-specific features, this smartwatch is built for all the risk-takers out there.

It features a 1.4” screen which allowed me to easily read the information on it during my usage under direct sunlight as well as in the dark. It’s compatible with night vision goggles which allowed me to use it for a night’s mission.

Also, this smartwatch offers TOPO maps which makes outdoor sports activities like hiking, trekking, hunting, etc. safer and more fun to do. Moreover, these maps are routable, therefore I could track back my route to my initial position when wandering in an unfamiliar location.

It also supports various navigational sensors like GPS, GLONASS, and Galileo that kept me aware of my location even if I was trekking in a no man’s land. When I was exploring Garmin Tactix 7 Pro, I could also use its GPS to track my daily activities like running, cycling, and swimming, which I think is an added advantage of this watch.

Also since it’s a 10ATM watch you can use it for occasional surfing, swimming, and other water activities. However, it can’t be used for serious marine activities like deep diving and snorkeling. But, overall in normal circumstances, water cannot damage this watch.

It also has some important tactical features like Jumpmaster, waypoint projection, and dual-position GPS formatting that make it a true military smartwatch.

Besides providing you with a tactical advantage, this smartwatch also keeps an eye on your health. This Garmin watch features a heart rate tracker that keeps monitoring your heartbeats 24/7 and provides you accurate data on your heart’s performance.

The battery life is also a crucial thing to notice while picking up a tactical smartwatch. So that you don’t end up with a dead smartwatch in the middle of an important task. Luckily, this watch comes with 28 days of battery life. During my test, I was about to get 21-day battery life easily on this military-grade smartwatch.

This can further be extended to 90 days with a power-saving mode. On a single charge, this smartwatch can easily last for more than 2 weeks in real-life usage. There is also a solar edition of this watch available, you can opt for that if you think you need more battery life.

Overall, it’s probably the best tactical smartwatch that you can get for military operations and extreme adventure sports.

The Good
  • Preloaded  color topography maps

  • Night goggles compatibility

  • Waterproof up to 100 meters

  • Fitness tracking ability

  • Various tactical features

The Bad
  • No touchscreen

  • High price

Click Here to Check on Amazon


CASIO G-Shock Mudmaster

Talking of rugged military watches and I don’t talk about G-Shock is that even fair? Not at all. So here I bring to you the Casio G-Shock Mudmaster which is a watch to go for if you’re a Navy SEAL, in the military, or any such work profile that demands a lot of physical work.

G-Shock Mudmaster may not be your funky-looking smartwatch with all the features under the sun but it still has all the basic tactical features you will need to survive on a battlefield.

Although this watch doesn’t have a built-in GPS like the Garmin Tactix Delta, it does have an Altimeter, Barometer, and Compass which I really found very handy in outdoor conditions.

However, the highlight of this watch and the reason I call it a great tactical smartwatch is that it features Atomic Timekeeping. With this feature on my watch, I don’t have to manually set the time and date on it.

The watch itself receives radio signals at regular intervals that update or synchronizes the time to the most accurate one. In military operations, every second counts, and therefore a watch like the G-Shock Mudmaster with atomic time is mostly used there.

Also, I did not have to worry about its battery because the smartwatch is capable of solar charging so it automatically got charged up when I was tracking activities outdoors in the sun.

Moreover, you can use this watch 24/7, in bright daylight as well as in the midnight darkness. There are two small LEDs embedded inside the watch dial that help you see the time when there is not enough light. Also, the watch hands and numbers are luminescent so they glow when you need to see the time at night.

Besides these tactical features, what else makes it a great military smartwatch is its toughness. G-Shock is known for making tough and rugged watches and you get the same durability on this watch. So it will easily last for years, even if you use it in the most extreme conditions every day.

Overall, if you are looking for a real military tough watch with advanced tactical features then there’s no competition to this G-Shock watch.

The Good
  • Luminated display

  • Atomic timekeeping

  • Super durable

  • Comfortable to wear

  • Looks great

The Bad
  • No GPS

  • Expensive

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3) Suunto 9 Baro

Suunto Military Grade Smartwatch

Another military-grade tactical smartwatch that I have for you is the Suunto 9 Baro. As its name suggests, it comes with a barometer. Moreover, it comes with an altimeter and compass as well. All of this combined together make it a good smartwatch to use outdoors on tactical missions.

Suunto 9 Baro supports multiple satellite navigation systems like GPS, GLONASS, Galileo, QZSS, and BEIDOU. Therefore, you can rest assured that you will not get lost in the wild.

When it comes to ruggedness and toughness then also this watch scores high points. As it has passed military-grade tests and this watch is made of stainless steel. To protect it from scratches and breakages, this smartwatch has a sapphire crystal on top of it.

Unlike some other smartwatches on this list, I was able to monitor my body’s health as well as fitness with the help of this smartwatch. It also comes with 80+ sports modes and the sports that I play were also available. Therefore I was able to accurately track my workouts.

The thing that I really liked is that this smartwatch has a full touchscreen. Therefore along with the buttons, I could simply select things by touching the screen. It really made the navigation very easy for me and needless to say, not many tactical smartwatches come with a touch screen.

The thing that I do not like about this military-grade watch is that it comes with a 14 days battery life and it does not come with solar charging. When compared to other smartwatches on this list, this watch falls short when it comes to battery life.

Overall it is a good tactical watch that has got almost all the features and really comes at an affordable price. So if you want a watch that has it all and also do not want to spend big then this is the watch for you.

The Good
  • Touch display
  • 100M water resistance
  • ABC sensors
  • Multiple satellite navigation
  • Health and fitness tracking
The Bad
  • Some people find it difficult to use the Suunto app
  • No solar charging

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4. Garmin Instinct 2x Solar Watch

garmin 2x

If you are willing to get a tactical smartwatch that can track your outdoor activities as well as your health then you are in the right place. Garmin Instinct 2x Solar Tactical is an offering from Garmin to all those adventure enthusiasts who are also concerned about their health.

Like other military-grade smartwatches on this list, Garmin Instinct 2x Solar Tactical has a built-in heart rate tracker that monitors your heart’s health. Moreover, it also has a pulse oximeter function that helps you determine the level of oxygen in your blood.

Apart from health, it can also track your daily fitness activities like running, swimming, and strength training.

Talking of its tactical features, it has all the basic features that you get in Garmin Tactix 7 Pro which I talked about earlier in this article. These features include Jumpmaster mode, waypoint projection, and dual-position GPS format.

However, this military-grade smartwatch does miss out on some features that you get in the Tactix Delta 7 Pro. It doesn’t come with TOPO maps, also it has a black-and-white display while you get a color display on the Tactix Delta 7 Pro. Having said that, you are getting this watch at a very low price than what you would pay for the Garmin Tactix so you cannot really complain much about it.

This tactical watch comes with solar charging capabilities. Therefore, it gets charged itself when you are outdoors and are exposed to the sun.

In terms of durability, Instinct 2X Solar can bear any type of extreme conditions. Also, this smartwatch is waterproof up to 100 meters so you can take it for swimming as well.

Overall, if you do not want to spend big on the Garmin Tactix  7 Pro then you can go with the Garmin Instinct 2x Solar watch. It costs you less than half when compared to Tactix  7 Pro but offers almost the same features. Overall, it is the best tactical smartwatch under $500. So if you are looking for the best military-grade smartwatch at an affordable price then you don’t have to look any further.

The Good
  • Affordable tactical watch

  • Military-grade durability

  • Supports solar charging

  • Waterproof up to 100 meters

  • Can track health

The Bad
  • No TOPO maps

  • Non-color display

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5.  Casio Men’s Pro Trek

Affordable Tactical Watch

This tactical smartwatch from Casio is designed especially for marine activities. It is a 20ATM watch that can go as deep as 200 meters in the water. The water resistance of this watch is one of the highest among all the watches on this list.

Its build quality is also commendable and therefore it can be used in salt waters without getting damaged.

Since it can go up to a depth of 660 ft in the waters, it can be used for professional marine activities and extreme water sports such as scuba diving, rafting, surfing, and more.

Not just under the water but this watch can also perform well in the fields as it features the ABC sensors which are Altimeter, Barometer, and Compass. Having these sensors in your watch you are always aware of your location and have an upper hand on the situation.

Also, it has an illuminated display that helps you see the time in the dark or when you are underwater where there is less light. The time it shows is also super precise as this watch features atomic timekeeping that automatically updates the time frequently so that it stays accurate.

And not just one time zone but you can see 31 time zones on this military-grade watch. It can show you the current time in any city across the world with the city name displayed on the screen.

Also, like some other watches on this list, this watch can be charged using solar energy. As a result, you will never run out of battery when you are outdoors. You also get this watch at a good price point, if you are not in the budget to buy the G-Shock Mudmatser then you can definitely go for this G-Shock.

Overall, if you are a marine or someone who loves to be in the waters then this budget tactical watch from G-Shock is best for you.

The Good
  • Waterproof up to 200 meters

  • Illuminated display

  • Navigation sensors

  • Affordable G-shock watch

  • Atomic timekeeping

The Bad
  • Cannot connect to the phone

  • No GPS

Click Here to Check on Amazon

6. Suunto Core

Suunto Core

If your budget is extremely tight and you want to get an indestructible affordable tactical smartwatch for outdoors and wilderness then the Suunto Core seems to be the right option for you. It is an inexpensive smartwatch that has all the basic tactical features with military-grade sturdiness, which will help you come out of difficult situations.

Although it does not have a GPS you still get an Altimeter, Barometer, and Compass on it that are crucial for tactical activities. Also, it has a sunrise and sunset alarm on it that keeps you aware of the day.

It can also sense a drop in air pressure and alert you about the weather change and upcoming storms so you can stay safe when you are wandering far from home.

The watch is also water-resistant to 100 meters so you won’t have an issue taking it in water with you. However, you should not do extreme water sports with it but rest it can handle pretty smoothly.

The build quality overall seems quite rigid on it and you can expect this watch to stay in good working condition for some time to come. According to a review on Amazon one guy has used it for over 6 years. So in terms of durability, this watch is a complete winner.

Overall, it’s the best military watch under $200 that you can buy for tactical purposes if you don’t want to spend much on a watch.

The Good
  • Cheap tactical watch

  • Good build quality

  • Waterproof up to 100 meters

  • Weather change alert

  • Sunrise and sunset alert

The Bad
  • No GPS

  • No TOPO maps

Click Here to Check on Amazon

7. Garmin Fenix 7X Sapphire Solar

Garmin Military Smartwatch

At the end of my list, I have yet another Garmin watch for you i.e. Garmin Fenix 7X Sapphire Solar. But this time it is a multi-sport watch that you can also use for tactical activities but most importantly for training for different sports. It has full-color TOPO maps as you would get on Garmin Tactix Delta and the maps are routable so you can easily track your way back to the initial position.

It has more advanced navigation sensors including GPS, Galileo, and GLONASS that can track the most challenging environments that alone GPS cannot track. Also, there is a 3-axis compass on it that keeps you informed about the direction in which you are trekking.

Along with the compass, there is also a gyroscope that helps indicate the orientation of the watch for better calculations of direction and distance. All these features combined make this watch a great tactical smartwatch that can help you come out of even the toughest situations.

Talking of its multisport feature, it can help you train for different sports including running, cycling, and swimming. Like other tactical smartwatches, you can swim with this watch as well because it comes with a 10 ATM water resistance rating. This watch can easily handle surface-level water activities including swimming.

Moreover, this military smartwatch comes enabled with solar charging. Therefore you do not have to worry about its battery getting discharged. Fenix 7X Sapphire Solar comes with a claimed battery life of 37 days with solar charging. Its battery life can be even further extended to 90 days with the help of battery saver mode. This makes it one of the smartwatches with the best battery life.

Also, there’s a heart rate sensor on this watch that helps you monitor your heartbeats so that you stay aware of your heart’s health and know how it’s performing.

The build quality is also super solid on this watch as it is built with titanium and comes with sapphire crystal on top. Both of them combined together give this military smartwatch rigidity and sturdiness.

Overall, it is a well-built tactical smartwatch with multisport training facilities. If you happen to be an adventure enthusiast as well as a sportsman/ athlete then you should definitely go with this watch.

The Good
  • Color TOPO maps

  • Train you for multiple sports

  • Has a heart rate sensor

  • Good navigation sensors

  • Sturdy design

The Bad
  • May not fit smaller wrists

  • Some people complain that its display is not bright enough

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8. Amazfit T-Rex 2

cheap tactical smartwatch

The Amazfit T-Rex 2 stands as a commendable tactical smartwatch, following the success of its predecessor, the T-Rex Pro. Built with durability in mind, it maintains a rugged plastic construction and MIL-STD-810G certification, ensuring its ability to withstand harsh conditions and shocks.

Despite a slightly larger display lacking high-grade protection, the watch offers touchscreen capabilities and glove-friendly side buttons. With 10 ATM water protection, it’s waterproof up to 100 meters, ideal for outdoor activities.

It comes with enhanced sensors, including a Dual-frequency band, to improve tracking accuracy. The proprietary Zepp OS powers the device, offering efficient navigation through its suite of workout and tracking apps. In my test, I found that the battery life on it is impressive, lasting me up to two weeks with regular use.

Overall, the T-Rex 2 excels as a reliable and robust smartwatch tailored for outdoor enthusiasts and tough environments. Also, you can get this smartwatch for under $200 making it one of the cheapest tactical smartwatches.

You can check out my detailed review of Amazfit T-Rex 2 here:

The Good
  • Highly durable tactical smartwatch

  • Good battery life

  • Water resistant up to 100 meters

The Bad
  • Limited app support

  • No microphone or speaker

Click Here to Check on Amazon


rugged smartwatch

The COROS VERTIX 2 GPS Sports Watch is a rugged and versatile smartwatch with features that make it highly suitable for military applications. Built with grade 5 titanium alloy and scratch-resistant sapphire glass, it’s engineered to withstand harsh military environments. Its advanced GPS accuracy, capable of communicating with multiple satellite systems, ensures reliable navigation even in challenging terrains.

The watch’s navigation capabilities are indispensable for military operations, offering route creation, topo maps, and elevation profiles. A remarkable battery life of up to 140 hours in GPS tracking mode or 60 days in regular use is crucial for extended missions where charging might be limited. Integration with training apps like Strava facilitates data sharing and performance analysis.

The VERTIX 2 also monitors heart rate, steps, sleep, and stress, aiding soldiers’ health management during high-stress situations. Its 1.4-inch always-on touch screen can display 8 data fields, providing instant information without compromising readability.

Performance insights like the Recovery Timer and Training Status offer soldiers the means to assess readiness accurately. Designed to endure tough conditions, the VERTIX 2 is well-suited for military training, fieldwork, and deployments. Overall, its durability, advanced navigation, long battery life, integration capabilities, and outdoor readiness position make it as a valuable tool for diverse military scenarios.

The Good
  • Rugged design
  • Good battery life
  • Highly accurate GPS system
The Bad
  • Pricey

  • Little on the bulkier side

Click Here to Check on Amazon

Buying Guide To Toughest Tactical Military Watches

1. Durability

The first thing to consider before buying a smartwatch for military or outdoor purposes is its durability. If the watch is not durable it won’t last long in extreme situations you are going to be in. Look for a watch that has a shockproof and waterproof body (at least 10 ATM). Also, the screen of the watch needs to be scratchproof or should have Gorilla Glass protection if you want to use it for a longer term.

2. Navigation Sensors

Since you are going to use these watches outdoors, you must go for a watch that has a good navigation system. Having a GPS or other satellite navigation systems like GLONASS or Galileo on your watch helps you stay on the right path and track your locations. Other than that, a tactical smartwatch must have ABC sensors, which stand for Altimeter, Barometer, and Compass.

Altimeter: It is responsible for providing the data related to the elevation, which is helpful when you are hiking or rock climbing with this watch.

Barometer: The barometer senses the variation in air pressure and predicts weather changes and also alerts you about an upcoming storm.

Compass: A compass helps in determining the direction you are heading in and ensures you don’t get lost.

3. Tactical Features

Besides navigation sensors, a tactical watch may have some advanced tactical features like night vision that allows you to see the time in the dark. Also, for showing accurate time some watches also uses atomic timekeeping that uses radiofrequency to update the time to the most accurate one.

Some advanced tactical watches also have a stealth mode which disables the GPS and wireless connectivity to stop sharing your location when it’s not safe to do so. You may also find the Jumpmaster feature on some tactical military watches that help you while you’re airborne so that you can land safely. However, not every tactical watch has all the features but you can go with the one that has all the features you need the most for your area of work.

4. Battery Life

Last but not least, the battery life of your tactical smartwatch needs to be good so the watch never runs out of power when you need it the most. You can also pick a tactical smartwatch that supports solar charging for extra battery life.


Which Watch Do Military Professional Use?

Army professionals mainly use G-Shock Watches because of their durability and tactical features.

Is Apple Watch Good For The Military?

Apple Watch is an all-around superb smartwatch but is not fit for military use because it's not that tough neither it features advanced tactical features.

Which Is The Most Rugged Tactical Watch?

In my review, I found the G-Shock Mudmaster to be the most rugged tactical watch you can buy.

Why Do Soldiers Wear a Watch Upside Down?

Soldiers wear watches upside down because this way it is easier for them to read time and other information from the watch while holding weapons like a gun or rifle.

Are Soldiers Allowed To Wear A Smartwatch?

Soldiers are allowed to wear a smartwatch especially activity trackers but they can only wear one item per wrist when they are on duty.

Tom Nielson

Tom's love for watches started when his grandfather gifted him his Rolex watch when he turned 18! Being a teenager it was a big deal for him. Later when he got his first job he bought Fossil Palm Pilot back in 2003 which was a smartwatch. Since then smartwatches have come a long way and so is Tom's love for them. His experience with watches inspired him to start Wearholic and share his knowledge of wearables including watches, smartwatches, smart glasses, & smart clothing.

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