The Ticwatch C2 and Garmin Fenix 6 are two different smartwatches that are meant for different consumers.
Ticwatch C2 is marketed by Mobvoi as a city slicker’s watch. It has a shiny stainless steel watch case and a leather strap. The Ticwatch C2 is also smaller and lighter than the Garmin Fenix 6. It has two buttons and a touch screen.
The Garmin Fenix 6 is a beast of a smartwatch. It’s large, heavy and gaudy (because we bought it with an orange strap). It has five buttons where you will do all your interaction with the smartwatch — yes, it does not have a touchscreen.
Related: Ticwatch C2 vs Ticwatch S2 | Ticwatch C2 vs Ticwatch E2 | Ticwatch C2 vs Fitbit Versa 2 | Ticwatch C2 vs Polar Vantage V | Ticwatch C2 vs Apple Watch Series 5 | Ticwatch C2 vs Samsung Galaxy Watch/Active 2 | Ticwatch C2 vs Ticwatch S2 | Ticwatch Pro vs Ticwatch C2 | Ticwatch C2 vs Fossil Gen 5 Carlyle | Ticwatch C2 Review
Buttons galore vs minimalism
From a user interaction standpoint, the Garmin Fenix 6 is difficult to use. The lack of a touchscreen really feels like a blast from the past, like digital watches from Casio in 1998 where you had one button to choose functions, start timers and turn on the backlight.
Knowing which button to use is a challenge. Even after wearing it for months, I still have a hard time knowing if I am pressing the right button.
Whereas with the Ticwatch C2, most interaction is done through the touchscreen or voice commands. There are only two buttons on the C2 and one of them function as a “home” button while the other is a shortcut to an app.
Winner: Ticwatch C2
The software embedded in both systems are also vastly different.
The Garmin Fenix 6 has software that focuses on sports, health and lifestyle. However, the Ticwatch C2 uses the more general-purpose operating system, Google’s Wear OS.
So do you want a muscle car that has a big engine, but is less nimble? Or do you want an European sports car that has a smaller engine but can handle curves better?
Text and emails
Texts and emails is where you see the first diversion of practicality.
While both platforms can receive notifications of emails and texts, the Ticwatch C2 is the only watch that can reply to these messages as long as you are paired to an Android phone.
You can reply to messages on the Ticwatch C2 using the speech-to-text function, keyboard, by drawing letters or by using a pre-composed message and emoji.
My preferred way to do this is by using the speech-to-text function because it is the most convenient way to input text. It’s really helped by Google having excellent speech recognition.
The keyboard and hand write functions are good but they are slow. It’s nice to have these options when you can’t use the speech-to-text function such as in a quiet area.
This contrasts with the Fenix 6, which can only reply with pre-composed replies such as “On my way” or “Yes”, and you see the difference between the utility offered by both smartwatches.
Winner: Ticwatch C2
The Wear OS is highly customizable while the Garmin Fenix 6 isn’t.
While both smartwatches have an app store, the Garmin Fenix 6’s Connect IQ app store does not have many apps that can really enhance your experience. The majority of the content there are watch faces.
Whereas with the Wear OS’s Google Play Store, you can download a wide range of apps that can help you become more productive on your wrist.
Some of the apps that I really like include Google’s suite of tools such as Maps, Keep and Translate. Maps is particularly useful if you are trying to navigate to a place and it’s not possible to use your smartphone, such as when you are riding a bicycle.
In contrast, you will have to get the upgraded version of the Garmin Fenix 6 if you want integrated maps. Our Garmin Fenix 6 Sapphire has the maps function and it’s great.
It’s an offline map so you can use it independently of a smartphone, unlike Google Maps on the Wear OS, which requires a data connection from a smartphone.
The Sapphire version also has a music app which is great because of the 32GB storage available on the Fenix 6.
But since you can get all of these functions on the Wear OS and a wider range of apps, the Ticwatch C2 triumphs over the Fenix 6.
Winner: Ticwatch C2
The battery life of the Ticwatch C2 just can’t compare with the Garmin Fenix 6.
The Ticwatch C2 has a power hungry LED screen that requires a backlight to be legible. Whereas the Fenix 6 has an LCD screen that reflects ambient light so that the only time you’ll need to use the backlight is during the evening.
And so, you can expect four times the battery life with the Fenix 6 as compared to the Ticwatch C2.
The Ticwatch C2 lasts a maximum of two days, but only if you avoid using anything that demands a lot of power like using the internal GPS.
The Fenix 6 lasts about nine days with daily use and some workout tracking that involves the use of the internal GPS.
Winner: Garmin Fenix 6
The Garmin Fenix 6 collects information about your lifestyle, workouts and health to give you a very well-rounded picture of your health.
Whereas the Ticwatch C2 can capture a few data points about your health and workouts but it won’t be able to give you such a complete picture of your life.
One thing that the Garmin Fenix 6 can do that the Ticwatch C2 cannot is track sleep. It can also give you advanced metrics such as your VO2Max, your PulseOx (measuring your altitude acclimatization), and everytime you track a workout, it will analyze whether you’re working in the aerobic or anaerobic zones. The Fenix 6 also has software that can help you create an exercise plan for your next race.
Whereas the Ticwatch C2 is much more rudimentary. On the C2, you get a choice of two health and workout apps, one from Google, called Google Fit, and the other from Mobvoi, with its TicHealth/TicExercise/TicPulse suite.
The difference between the two have shrunk significantly as Google Fit got updated. Now, it leads to a real dilemma for the user as both suites offer very similar functionalities.
Both these suites can track workouts, step counts and your heart rate. The biggest plus for Mobvoi’s suite is that it has a pool swim tracker, whereas Google Fit doesn’t.
Hardware-wise, the Ticwatch C2 and the Garmin Fenix 6 are waterproof for swimming and they have an integrated GPS that allows you to get location data without depending on having a smartphone nearby. Notably, the Ticwatch C2 takes a few minutes to get a GPS lock, which really reminds me of my first smartphone in 2011, whereas the Garmin Fenix 6 takes less than a minute, much in line with modern expectations.
Winner: Garmin Fenix 6
The Garmin Fenix 6 is my watch of choice and one that I would wear daily. The convenience you get from not needing to charge daily, to having a great workout data analyzer really makes the Fenix 6 a great tool for improving your health and lifestyle.
However, horses for courses. The Fenix 6 can’t do a lot of things the Ticwatch C2 can do. Notably, the C2 is a general-purpose powerhouse capable of doing most things the Fenix 6 can, but more.
Most folks will do well with the C2 because of its dynamism, but if you want a specialized watch meant to improve your lifestyle, then the Garmin Fenix 6 is what you should be looking for.