The Tag Heuer Connected Calibre E4 is a beautiful smartwatch, with processing power that delivers zippy performance and leaves it open to being updated to Wear OS 3.0. However, the promise of big sports and wellness features isn’t quite realised, and while battery life is improved, you can find better performance for less in the Wear OS realm.
- Great, luxurious design
- Speedy performance
- Lovely watch faces
- Sports tracking still isn’t perfect
- Not running Wear OS 3.0 (yet)
- 45mm version might feel heavy for some
- UKRRP: £1700
- USARRP: $2050
- EuropeRRP: €1870
- CanadaRRP: CA$2550
- AustraliaRRP: AU$2750
- Classy feelSteel case with ceramic bezel
- Two sizesComes in 42mm and 45mm size options
- SensorsBuilt-in GPS and heart rate
The follow-up to the Connected watch – which launched back in 2020 – is available in two sizes, features new fitness features, and is fit to run on the latest version of Google’s smartwatch operating system when it becomes available.
To get one on your wrist, you’ll need to be willing to part with at least £1500, with owners of older Tag Connected watches able to trade in to get money off the newer E4.
It’s a big price to stomach for software you can spend less on, so is that look and Tag software extras worth it?
Design and Screen
- Steel case and ceramic bezel
- Removable straps
- 5ATM water-resistance
- 1.39-inch AMOLED screen
Bottom line, the Tag Heuer Connected Calibre E4 is an absolute beauty of a smartwatch. If you like the idea of a smartwatch that looks like a luxury watch, that’s what Tag delivers.
Size-wise, Tag offers the Calibre E4 in 42mm and 45mm sizes. The 45mm size is the one on review, and it feels like a nice size, but the 42mm version will certainly appeal to those who like the idea of a Tag Heuer smartwatch, but prefer a design better suited for slimmer wrists.
My wrists definitely fall into that slim category, but I didn’t feel the 45mm device was a hulking beast to wear. There’s definitely a little weight to it, though, thanks mostly to the steel case – which won’t be for everyone and might not be ideal for all-out exercise time. If you like a little heft to your watches to remind you it’s there, however, then you’ll like what you get here.
That steel case is joined by a glossy ceramic bezel, which has become a bit of a signature for the Connected range – and, once again, elevates the look of the E4. There’s a rotating crown to scroll through screens and redesigned pushers on the side of the case, which also feel like elements you’d expect to find on a traditional Tag Heuer watch.
That bezel surrounds a 1.39-inch, 454 x 454 AMOLED display with sapphire glass on top, which does support an always-on mode. That’s the same size screen and resolution as the previous Tag Heuer Connected, and it does still offer sharp surroundings for your stats and watch faces, as well as decent visibility in bright direct sunlight.
In the strap department, there’s a rubber option on the cheaper model of the 45mm Calibre E4, but you can also pick it up with a metal bracelet. Not surprisingly, the latter pushes up the price. Once I got the rubber strap in place, it didn’t budge and felt comfortable to wear through the day and at night.
Features and Performance
- Works with Android and iOS
- Great array of watch faces
- Powered by Snapdragon 4100+ processor
The E4 runs on Wear OS 2.0 (2.34 to be precise) but will receive a free update to Wear OS 3.0 when it arrives. Right now, you’re stuck with the Wear of old, which is frustrating.
There’s still so much uncertainty over how Wear OS 3.0 will look outside how it debuted, and remains seemingly exclusive on the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4. It could give the Calibre E4 greater appeal, but it’s really hard to say how dramatic the changes will be from Wear OS 2.0.
Unlike the Galaxy Watch 4, the E4 is compatible with both Android phones and iPhones. I paired it to an Android phone, needing to download both the Wear OS companion phone app and Tag’s own Connected app. To be able to use the latter, you’ll need to have the first app installed.
Once you do, that Connected app offers somewhere to pick out new watch faces, check your wellness and fitness stats, and choose whether to share data to platforms such as Google Fit and Strava.
I’ll leave going into the fitness and wellness elements until the next section, but I have to applaud the quality of watch faces that Tag puts on offer for the E4. All of the designs, both analogue and digital, are in keeping with the luxury exterior of the watch. You’ll find some of the best designed watch faces you can find on a smartwatch here.
With regards to the watch itself, I’m happy to see that while this is old Wear, there are new components powering things. Tag has included Qualcomm’s latest Snapdragon 4100+ processor, although doesn’t specify the RAM and storage that accompanies it. What I can say is that you get zippy performance here – and that’s good to see.
From a Wear OS perspective, all the usual suspects are present in terms of features. You’ll use the same swipes to get to your notification stream, Tiles or Google Assistant screen, for example. Pressing the crown takes you to the app screen, and the pushers offer shortcuts to Tag’s wellness and sports apps. There are all of Google’s native watch apps installed here, too, and that includes Google Pay. With YouTube music and Spotify apps, there’s offline playlist syncing, which was lost when Google Play Music was ditched.
For those who like to be able to take calls via their watch, you can’t do that. LTE isn’t supported here, either. Note that iPhone users can’t make full use of features such as notification support, so it’s a device that feels a better fit for Android users. If you’ve got an iPhone, I would also say just get the Apple Watch 7.
There’s good and bad here with Wear; but it’s really more about creating a slick, intuitive, well-connected smartwatch platform, which doesn’t feel like the case with this version of the OS. Hopefully, this is something that will change once Wear OS 3.0 arrives – but it’s a big hope. The hardware is there, it just needs the slick software to match.
- Dedicated Tag Heuer Sports, Wellness and Golf apps
- Built-in GPS
- New altimeter
- Guided workouts
The Calibre E4 has all the key ingredients to make it the ideal fitness companion, and after introducing its Sports app on its previous watch, Tag is now adding more exercise-centric features into the mix too.
For sensors, Tag includes built-in GPS, a heart rate monitor and pretty standard motion sensors to track indoor activities such as pool swimming. You can use Google’s Fit apps and third-party apps from the Play Store to track your fitness, and Tag also includes its own Sports, Golf and Wellness apps.
My experience and thoughts of Google Fit as a place to track your fitness haven’t changed. It’s clunky and just not very good. So I decided to make use of Tag’s option instead. The app itself is pretty slick. There are seven supported tracking modes in total and those include Running, Golf, Cycling, Swimming, Indoor Running and a General mode to track workout duration and heart rate.
There’s also a Fitness mode, where you’ll find a small collection of seven-minute workouts for full body or targeted upper, core and lower-body workouts for some short, sharp exercise time. You can choose the rounds you want to tackle and then you can view animations of the moves along with your heart rate data. There’s no rep-counting here, so it’s about performing exercises until the time is up, after which it’s time for the next move.
If you grow tired of doing the same preloaded workouts, there’s an advanced workout mode, too, letting you create workouts in the companion Connected app and syncing them over to the watch – although I wasn’t able to find that inside of the app.
For outdoor runs, I found that the app over-reported on distance and clocked me in at a quicker average pace over the Garmin Epix. In general, average heart rate and maximum heart rate readings were 10-15bpm out from a chest strap monitor. Things were a bit better on the swim-tracking front, matching up for distance covered against Polar’s swim tracking; but it reported I was swimming with a faster average pace.
Tag’s Wellness app is more concerned with tracking steps, calories, heart rate and keeping tabs on your exercise time. I compared step counts to the Oura Ring and a Garmin, finding that the Calibre E4 posted the higher step counts by around 1000 steps. For all day heart rate monitoring, I found the Tag reported a 20bpm higher readings in general for average readings.
I’d say the sports and fitness tracking experience on the E4 is a bit style over substance in places. It certainly doesn’t match a cheaper dedicated sports watch for accuracy, and while the Wellness and Sports apps are well presented, both require the reliable sensors to make best use of them.
- Can stretch to a day with power-saving mode
- Charges 0-100% in 1hr 30mins
Previous Tag Heuer Connected watches were good for a day’s use, like most Wear OS-running smartwatches. Tag says it’s managed to offer 30% better battery performance – and I’d say that rings true based on my testing time with the device.
It comes with a 430mAh capacity battery, which offers a full day with one hour of sports tracking. I found that I could get through a day and half with all features in use and 30-40 minutes of GPS use. When you get to that day and a half point, the watch switches to the clock-only mode. If I left it on for the following night, the screen would be dead.
So I’d say there’s been a small improvement in battery performance. Compared to smartwatches at a fraction of the price, and Wear OS watches such as the TicWatch Pro 3, battery life here doesn’t seem so good. If you’ve come here expecting week-long battery life, you’re out of luck.
Should you buy it?
If you want a beautiful, luxury smartwatch From the materials used to the lovely ceramic bezel, you get what you pay for in terms of looks.
If you want a Wear OS smartwatch with the latest software The Calibre E4 will get Wear OS 3.0 – we just don’t know when or how long that could take.
I’ve loved wearing the Tag Heuer Connected Calibre E4 on my wrist, although it wasn’t without constant concern that I might bump or scratch that expensive watch case. Overall, the fitness and sports extras you get from Tag look great, but don’t deliver for those who really care about proper sports tracking.
As such, if you already own a Tag and you want a smartwatch equivalent that offers features such as notifications, lovely watch faces and different strap options, you might give this watch a look. If you’re after the best smartwatch out there, however, the Tag Connected Calibre E4 isn’t it. It does remain the best luxury effort you can find that could get better with Wear OS 3.0.
How we test
We thoroughly test every smartwatch we review. We use industry standard testing to compare features properly and we use the watch as our main device over the review period. We’ll always tell you what we find and we never, ever, accept money to review a product.
Worn as our main smartwatch during the testing period
Heart rate data compared against dedicated heart rate devices
Side-by-side GPS comparison with our best scoring smartwatches
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The key differences between the two size models is that you’re getting different design looks as well as different screen sizes and resolutions. The 45mm version also includes an altimeter to offer additional outdoor metrics.
It might be a hefty-looking watch, but you can take the Connected Calibre E4 swimming. It’s primarily designed for swimming in pools that are no deeper than 50 metres, however.