Travis Goodreau

Learn More About Life Alert

Between these two security systems, our favorite is Life Alert.

SecureScore™: 7.7/10

Life Alert and the Apple Watch both offer features that allow them to connect with emergency services getting you the help you need if you've fallen or been injured. Although both are effective, the Apple Watch was not designed to be a medical alert device. It does offer certain features that make it easy to use when an emergency occurs. Life Alert, however, is the leader when it comes to medical alert systems and is the best choice if you want true peace of mind.

Overview: Life Alert vs Apple Watch

Life Alert and Apple Watch have features that allow for immediate connectivity with emergency responders. While Apple Watch works well as a smartphone or medical alert companion to your iPhone, it is not a medical alert device. Life Alert, however, provides you with the features you need if you want a reliable medical alert system that will connect you to a certified call center 24 hours a day.

  • Life Alert requires a 3-year contract
  • Apple Watch requires a cellular contract if you want to use all of its features
  • If you have the Apple Watch app, you may not need to purchase the additional contract
  • Life Alert offers water-resistant devices that can be worn in the shower
  • Life Alert connects you to a certified call center instead of only calling 9-1-1

Similarities: Apple Watch vs Life Alert

Life Alert and Apple Watch both have apps that make communicating with family members a snap. Both are water-resistant to a degree and are easy to use no matter where you are. Both offer the ability to communicate with emergency responders, although Apple Watch doesn't use a call center. Calls go directly to 9-1-1 operators. To use the mobile apps, both companies require a contract either with a call center or a cellular company.

  • Mobile apps
  • Emergency connectivity
  • Easy to connect with family members or caregivers
  • Cellular service
  • Two-way communication (Apple Watch uses a phone feature)

Differences: Apple Watch vs Life Alert

Life Alert offers multiple devices including a pendant or wristband option. The Life Alert medical alert system uses a base unit that is capable of two-way communication. The Apple Watch only needs the watch to function and an Apple smartphone. If two-way communication is desired, you will need to have a smartphone with cellular service to be able to use the app effectively. Life Alert and Apple Watch both require contracts in one way or another.

  • Life Alert's contract is for 3-years
  • Apple Watch can be purchased from Verizon or other cellular carriers with a two-year contract and an Apple smartphone
  • Apple Watch doubles as a phone
  • Life Alert devices are waterproof and can be worn in the shower
  • Apple Watch is more expensive


Life Alert offers several features that make it extremely reliable and very easy to use. Both the pendants and the wristbands are waterproof and can be worn in the shower. The mobile app makes it easy to stay in contact with family members and caregivers at all times. The base unit offers two-way voice communication allowing you to communicate with the call center if an accident occurs. You are covered while in your home as well as when you are out and about.

Apple Watch allows for coverage at home as well as on the go. When the app is installed on your smartphone you can make and receive phone calls on your watch, as well as communicate with family members and 9-1-1 personnel. Apple Watch is also equipped with multiple features to monitor your health, including a heart rate monitor and pedometer.


Life Alert requires a 3-year contract.

Apple Watch can be purchased outright with no contract obligations but if you want to receive the maximum benefit you will need to obtain a cellular contract. Most cellular contracts are for two-years and will allow you to use the app on your Apple smartphone.


A basic Life Alert plan will cost you $50 per month with a 36-month contract. Professional installation can cost you anywhere from $95 to $300. Adding a Help Button to your plan with increase your monthly payment to $70 per month. If you want the comprehensive plan that includes the Mobile and GPS options, your monthly payment will be almost $90.

To purchase the Apple Watch outright, you can expect to pay up to $500, sometimes more depending on where you purchase your device. If you purchase the watch through a mobile carrier like Sprint or Verizon, you can pay as little as $20 per month for the device plus the monthly cellular fee.


Life Alert's equipment includes a wristband option, pendant and a base unit.

Apple Watch equipment consists of the watch and its charger. An Apple smartphone will be needed to connect it to the app feature.


Life Alert requires professional installation on all plans where the equipment is paid for in monthly installments

The Apple Watch does not require any type of installation.

Emergency Connections

Life Alert uses a Five Diamond certified call center. Alerts are sent directly to the call center who, in turn, notifies numbers on your call list as well as nearby first responders in the event of an emergency.

Apple Watch allows you to remain in contact with family members and caregivers at all times. In terms of emergency response, all alerts go directly to a 9-1-1 operator instead of a call center.

Summary: Life Alert vs Apple Watch

Life Alert is a great choice for individuals who want a trusted name with quality and reliable medical alert devices.

Apple Watch is the best options for people who prefer to use Apple products.

Read our full review of Life Alert