Continuous glucose monitoring systems, also known as CGMs, are becoming more popular among diabetic patients all over the world who are taking control of their diabetes.
Every one in ten people in the US is a diabetic which makes it a worse situation. So, it is high time to defeat this illness with active awareness and drastic management steps.
Dexcom G6 is an excellent and popular CGM that can monitor the blood glucose level of a person with clinical accuracy. It has been approved by the FDA as a genuine glucose measurement device. Dexcom G6 CGM is a smart and wearable glucose monitor that is compatible with smartwatches and smartphones.
In this post, we will provide you with a detailed list of the best smartphones and smartwatches that work the finest with the Dexcom G6 CGM.
What is Dexcom G6?
The Dexcom G6 is the latest continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) system from the company called Dexcom. Dexcom specializes in developing and manufacturing high-end medical devices and Dexcom G6 is one of them.
Dexcom G6 is unique from other Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) systems because it is factory-calibrated and thus there is no need for fingersticks for repetitive calibration.
The Dexcom G6 includes a sensor, transmitter, and display device (receiver or compatible smart device). It is an advanced system that has been designed to have a one-touch auto-applicator and a discreet transmitter. This particular CGM measures glucose levels and sends the reading to a display device or a Dexcom receiver every five minutes.
How does the Dexcom G6 sensor work?
A continuous Glucose Monitor like Dexcom G6 works by inserting a discreet sensor wire under your skin using what is called an automatic applicator. There is an adhesive patch provided that holds the Dexcom G6 sensor housing in its correct place. Now, the sensor will measure glucose readings in the interstitial fluids (fluids between cells) around the clock.
There is another part called the transmitter (small and reusable) provided that connects to the sensory wire and transfers the real-time glucose recordings to a receiver wirelessly so that the user can assess the glucose level information.
You can also use a compatible smart device (like a smartphone or a tablet) to work with the CGM system app to display real-time glucose levels and overall trends. You can set the Dexcom G6 CGM receiver or the compatible display device to send personalized alerts to the user when the glucose level goes beyond a fixed threshold.
Is the Dexcom G6 app compatible with Android and iOS?
Yes, Dexcom G6 is flexible when it comes to compatibility with smart devices like smartwatches, smartphones, and tablets.
- iPhone (iOS) is compatible starting from the iPhone 6s to iPhone 12 Pro Max
- Apple Watch 1st generation to Apple Watch Series 6 and SE
- Android devices from Samsung, Google, LG, and Huawei
What are the Best Smartwatches for Dexcom G6?
Dexcom G6 is fully compatible with a few of the smartwatches on the market. After researching and analyzing all of the functioning and non-working characteristics, I’ve separated five distinct smartwatches. Each smartwatch represents a category that you will see later in this document.
Apple Watch Series 5 – the best Apple Watch for Dexcom G6
Probably, you know the latest Apple Watch series in the market is Series 7, but not for Dexcom G6. For Dexcom G6, the latest Apple Watch is Series 5 which comes with WatchOS 6 pre-loaded. Though, two-generation old, Apple Watch Series 5 is still a very capable device.
Features: Apple Watch Series 5
- Always-On Retina LTPO OLED display that allows the time and important stuff to remain visible on the watch face all the time
- A new compass for better navigation
- Electric heart rate sensor for heart health tracking
- 32 GB of on-board storage
- The second generation of optical heart sensor and barometric altimeter
- Fall detection and ECG feature
- International emergency calling and SOS feature
- Magnetic Charging Cable and 18 hours of battery life
Pros: Apple Watch Series 5
- WatchOS is simply amazing
- Accurate sleep and heart rate tracking
- Customizable watch faces
Cons: Apple Watch Series 5
- Battery life is less
Garmin Fenix 6 (the best Android Smartwatch for Dexcom G6)
Dexcom decided at the end of 2021 to bring real-time blood glucose monitoring to Garmin smartwatches. And, when we talk about Garmin, Fenix 6 is one of the best smartwatches in their line of products that come with amazing features, It is end-to-end compatible with Dexcom G6.
Features: Garmin Fenix 6
- Accurate heart-rate tracking and analysis
- Garmin stress tracking technology
- PacePro feature to make your runs smarter
- Activity tracking with ABC (Altimeter, Barometer, and Compass) Sensor
- Pulse Ox feature to monitor blood percentage saturation of oxygen (SpO2)
- Dedicated Power Manager feature that enables Garmin Fenix 6 to last for weeks on a single charge
- Onboard storage for music and access to all music hosting sites like Spotify and Deezer
Pros: Garmin Fenix 6
- Accurate Navigator and reliable Pulse Ox sensor
- Beautiful design
Cons: Garmin Fenix 6
Amazefit Verge with Alexa
Amazefit Verge is an inexpensive option if you want a fully compatible smartwatch for your Dexcom G6 CGM. Though the price isn’t something that will burn a hole in your wallet, the design is quite sporty and follows the trend. You can easily wear it as your everyday casual smartwatch.
Features: Amazefit Verge
- Comes with High Definition 1.3 inches AMOLED screen for clear images and realistic clock pointers
- Equipped with GPS and GLONASS satellite positioning which allows you to track 12 sports flawlessly
- High precision optical sensor and upgraded algorithm for continuous heart rate monitoring
- Claims 5 days of battery life and lots of customizable dial plates for better personalization of the device
- Amazefit OS is clean, responsive, and user-friendly with lots of details
- 4GB of built-in memory and Bluetooth 4.2 for wireless data syncing
- Zepp app (earlier known as the Amazefit app) is incredible and allows you to track all the trends and history of data the Amazefit Verge records
Pros: Amazefit Verge
- Pocket-friendly and elegant
- Amazon Alexa makes it different from the bunch
- Durability and great battery life
Cons: Amazefit Verge
- Bluetooth connectivity issue with iPhone
Fossil Gen 5
If you are looking for a capable smartwatch with minimalistic design and casual form factor to go with your Dexcom G6 CGM, then Fossil Gen- 5 can be your go-to option. Fossil has been a pioneer of elegant and budget watches. And Fossil Gen 5 is not different from the lot. It comes with all the features of a smartwatch and the elegance of a chronograph.
Features: Fossil Gen 5
- Comes with WearOS (from Google) and is compatible with both iPhone and Android smartphones
- GPS equipped smartwatch that allows you to use the smartwatch alone without the phone
- 8 GB of onboard flash storage is more than enough to record detailed data
- Swimproof and works with all the third-party apps like Nike Run Club and Spotify.
- Battery usability can be customized to increase battery life. The smartwatch takes just an hour to charge fully.
- Heart rate tracking with cardiogram feature along with sleep tracking
Pros: Fossil Gen 5
- Fast Charging
- Extra onboard storage and WearOS
- High Durability
Cons: Fossil Gen 5
- Inaccuracy in sleep tracking has been complaint by some users
TicWatch Pro (4g/LTE)
TicWatch Pro is compatible with Dexcom G6 in its full capacity and is a cellular smartwatch. If you are looking for a WearOS (Android) smartwatch with cellular support for your Dexcom G6, then TicWatch Pro can be your best option. Let us explore the features.
Features: TicWatch Pro
- With Essential mode, the battery life can be claimed to be of 30-days. In Smart Mode, it can last from 2 to 5 days.
- TicMotion proactive motion tracking tracks all your activities
- With IP68 certification, TicWatch Pro is swimming proof
- Google Assistant is enabled
- NFC payments enabled
- Thinner and lightweight with efficient cellular connectivity
- Heart monitoring round the clock
- Made from polyamide and glass fiber for a premium look and built
- Double layered screen (AMOLED below and FSTN at the top)
Pros: TicWatch Pro
- Lightweight and sturdy quality
- Cellular independence and reliable GPS
- Long battery life
- Decent sleep and heart tracking
Cons: TicWatch Pro
- The processor could have been better
Best Smartphones for Dexcom G6 CGM
Dexcom G6 is fully compatible with a handful of iOS and Android smartphones. It took some time to decide which are the top smartphones to go with your Dexcom G6 Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) System. And here is the list with important features.
Samsung Galaxy S21 5G (The best Android Smartphone for Dexcom G6 CGM)
One of the most premium smartphones in the market and probably the best Android smartphone overall, Samsung Galaxy S21 can be a perfect companion to your Dexcom G6.
Features: Samsung Galaxy S21
- 6.2 inches AMOLED screen with 120 Hz refresh rate and 1300 nits peak brightness
- Corning Gorilla Glass Victus protection for your display and camera
- Samsung’s flagship Exynos 2100 processor with 5 nm fabrication for the Global version and Snapdragon 888 5G SoC for US and China
- Triple Rear Camera Setup (12 MP main sensor, 64 MP telephoto, 12 MP Ultrawide sensor). 10 MP front camera for selfies and videocalls
- Stereo speakers present
- 4K video recording at 30 and 60 frames per second
- GPS configuration with GLONASS, BDS, and GALILEO satellites
- 4000 mAh battery with 25 watts fast charging
Pros: Samsung Galaxy S21
- Ample color options, great design, and IP68 certification
- Flagship smartphone with all the flagship hardware
- AMOLED Screen is simply gorgeous
- Improved battery life
Cons: Samsung Galaxy S21
- No charger or headphones included in the box
- Plastic back makes puts it at an odd position
iPhone 12 Pro Max (The Best iOS smartphone for Dexcom G6 CGM)
Here is another premium smartphone that can be the best partner with your Dexcom G6. This is one of the best smartphones on the earth with exceptional hardware and an exceptional iOS operating system.
Features: iPhone 12 Pro Max
- Super Retina XDR OLED display with Dolby Vision and 800 nits maximum brightness
- Gorilla Glass protection on the front and the back
- Comes with Apple A14 Bionic processor with 5 nm fabrication
- IP68 dust and water-resistant certification
- Quad rear camera setup with each camera sensor is of 12 MP
- Dual front camera setup where each camera sensor is of 12 MP
- Maximum 4K video recording at 24/30/50 fps
- Stereo Speakers present
- GPS Support with A-GPS, GLONASS, GALILEO, QZSS satellites
- 22W fast charging and 15-watt wireless fast charging support
Pros: iPhone 12 Pro Max
- Great attention to detail and sumptuous design
- The OLED screen is excellent and very bright
- Stereo speakers are significantly loud
- The fastest SoC on the planet
Cons: iPhone 12 Pro Max
- Higher refresh rates are missing for the screen
- TouchID is missing
- No charger or earphones in the box
Google Pixel 5
If you are someone with a liking for stock Android along with the need for a snappy smartphone for your Dexcom G6 CGM, Google Pixel 5 can be the ultimate smartphone for you. This is one of the flagship smartphones from the house of Android itself. This guarantees quicker software updates and early security patches for your smartphone.
Features: Google Pixel 5
- 6.0 inches OLED (HDR+) display with 90 Hz refresh rate
- Corning Gorilla Glass 6 protection with Always-on display feature
- IP68 dust and water-resistant up to 1.5 meters for 30 minutes
- Snapdragon 765G 5G processor with 7 nm fabrication
- Dual rear camera setup where the main sensor is 12.2 MP and the ultrawide sensor is 16 MP
- The front camera is 8 MP
- 4K video recording at 30 and 60 fps
- Stereo speakers present for awesome sound quality
- GPS functionality with A-GPS, GLONASS, GALILEO, QZSS, BDS
- 18 Watts fast charging, 12 Watts wireless charging, and 5 Watts reverse charging feature
Pros: Google Pixel 5
- The screen to body ratio is impressive
- Loud stereo speakers and excellent battery endurance
- Brightness improved from its predecessors
- Excellent software for camera
Cons: Google Pixel 5
- Snapdragon 765G simply makes it incomparable to other flagship devices
- The camera upgrade is missing
iPhone XR (The budget iOS Smartphone for Dexcom G6)
iPhone XR is the affordable iOS option with full compatibility for Dexcom G6. If iPhone 12 Pro Max is too expensive (which is often the case) and you still want to enjoy the beauty of iOS, iPhone XR can be the best find for you.
Features: iPhone XR
- 6.1 inches Liquid Retina IPS LCD display with a maximum brightness of 625 nits
- Gorilla glass protection at the front and at the back with aluminum frame
- Apple A12 Bionic chip with 7 nm fabrication
- IP67 dust and water-resistant (up to 1 meter deep for 30 minutes)
- The rear camera is 12 MP with Optical Image Stabilization
- The front camera is 7 MP (f/2.2 aperture)
- 4K Video recording at 24/30/60 fps
- Great sound output with stereo speakers
- GPS support with A-GPS, GALILEO, QZSS, GLONASS support
- 15 watts fast charging support along with Qi wireless charging
Pros: iPhone XR
- Affordable iPhone with excellent features
- High-end design and multiple color options
- Powerful hardware and amazing battery life for an iOS device
- Dual SIM slots
Cons: iPhone XR
- The LCD display is poor in outdoor lights
- 3D touch is missing
- Single rear camera
Google Pixel 4a (The budget pure Android smartphone for Dexcom G6 CGM)
Here comes the affordable and inexpensive Pixel with a pure Android interface. If you like the clean looks of stock Android without any bloatware on a budget, Google Pixel 4a should be an effortless choice for you.
Features: Google Pixel 4a
- Compact 5.8 inches OLED (HDR) display
- Qualcomm Snapdragon 730G processor with 8 nm fabrication
- Corning Gorilla Glass -3 protection for the screen
- 12.2 MP single rear camera with f/1.7 aperture
- Can record video at 4K at 30 fps
- 8 MP front camera with f/2.0 aperture
- Stereo speakers for great audio quality
- GPS support with access to all major satellites like GLONASS, BDS, QZSS
- 18 Watts Fast Charging feature
Pros: Google Pixel 4a
- Best camera sensor for a mid-range smartphone
- Stock Android User Interface
- Great performance and compact size
- Display is amazing
Cons: Google Pixel 4a
- Plastic body
- Average battery life
Does Dexcom G6 work with iPads?
After thorough research on the internet, I found that Dexcom G6 doesn’t work with modern or the latest versions of iPads. But it works seamlessly well with the older versions mentioned in the list below –
- iPad 4
- iPad 5
- iPad Air
- iPad Air 2
- iPad Mini 2
- iPad Mini 3
- iPad Mini 4
- iPad Pro
- iPod touch 6th Generation
So, if you own any of the iPads from the list, you are in luck.
What are Common Dexcom G6 Connectivity Problems?
As per the user experiences and the reviews mentioned on the web and on different online forums, the most common problem with the Dexcom G6 regarding connectivity is the “Signal Loss” problem. This is inevitable when your smartphone or other smart devices for display is not within the range of the Dexcom G6 transmitter.
So, if you happen to face this “Signal Loss Alert”, you can try the following methods to solve the problem –
- Ensure that your Dexcom G6 transmitter is close to your smart device (for display) so that the transmitter can transfer the data to it without any interference. This should solve the problem.
- If the problem still persists, then check the Dexcom G6 App on your smartphone or smartwatch. There is a chance that it has been closed and is not running in the background. You can open the app and check for the same.
- If the problem still stays, you can turn off your Bluetooth connection and turn it on again. Wait for a while for the connection to be re-establish again.
- The last hack is to reboot your smartphone or smartwatch and open the Dexcom G6 app again on the phone or the smartwatch. This should resolve the issue.
- The last thing to check to solve the unresolved signal issue is to ensure that the receiver is working fine.
- To check the receiver status, open the Dexcom G6 app on your smartphone or smartwatch and go to the settings option.
- From there, tap on Transmitter info. Now, you have to make sure that the Transmitter ID and the activation Date mentioned are verified.
- If they are not verified, then you can verify it and the system should start functioning normally.
- If you are experiencing this “Signal loss” issue intermittently and regularly, then you can contact Dexcom Technical support and ask them to solve the issue. There might be a chance that the device is inherently faulty.
Can the Dexcom G6 be worn on the arm?
Dexcom mentions that Dexcom G6 sensors can be inserted on the following body parts –
- Abdomen region
- The back of the upper arm for patients from age 2 and older
- Upper buttocks for patients between age 2 to 17
So, yes, as per the recommendation, Dexcom G6 can be worn on the arm.
Sensor placement is vital and you should change the insertion region with each new sensor. This is because, using the same site for multiple consecutive insertions may cause skin damage, scarring, and irritation.
Is Dexcom G6 good for Type 2 Diabetes?
Yes, Dexcom G6 is absolutely great for Type 2 Diabetes monitoring. If the patient is over 2 years old and is on fast-acting insulin (intensive insulin therapy) for Diabetes Mellitus Type -2, Continuous Glucose Monitoring Systems like Dexcom G6 can offer great benefits.
Dexcom G6 will offer real-time glucose levels at a single glance along with trends, and helpful alerts which will help the users to manage their type-2 diabetes proactively.
In the list of compatible smartwatches and smartphones provided by Dexcom for the Dexcom app on their website, there is a handful of devices that offer full compatibility. So, you should make a wise and informed decision before purchasing one.
Is the Receiver of Dexcom G6 waterproof?
Unfortunately, the receiver on the Dexcom G6 CGM system is not waterproof or water-resistant. So, it is vulnerable to moisture and can get severely damaged if water gets inside it. Water also obstructs the communication range between the transmitter and the display devices. Thus, this can damage the receiver and the user can miss an important glucose reading.
Can I Wear Dexcom G6 in Shower?
The Dexcom G6 CGM system has transmitters that are resistant to water. Even the Sensor Pod for the device is water-resistant when the transmitter is installed properly. But the receivers are not resistant to water and can be severely damaged if water gets inside them.
So, if you can protect the receivers from water then you can wear Dexcom G6 in the shower. You can easily use it on beaches and pools without any fuss.
How Often Does Dexcom G6 Check Blood Sugar?
The Dexcom G6 monitors your blood sugar level continuously. This is the reason why it is called a continuous Glucose Monitoring system. The frequency of measurement is not mentioned explicitly on the website but it can be understood to be high.
While the exact frequency of glucose level measurement is not known for Dexcom G6, it does send fresh readings of glucose levels to the transmitter or the display device every 5 minutes. So, it is fair to extrapolate that it measures glucose level at least once 5 minutes or even more.
Can you wear Dexcom G6 for Longer than 10 Days?
Dexcom G6 is approved by FDA for 10 days of wear only and there is a chance that the accuracy of the sensor declines after 10 days. So, if you are extending the period, you might be compromising the glucose measurements which can lead to garbage results and unfortunate decisions.
The life of the transmitter is around 90 days, but the sensor’s life is around 10 days for optimal performance. Hence, it is advised to follow the instructions and change the sensor every 10 days.
How Long Does Dexcom G6 Transmitter Last?
Dexcom claims that the life of a single transmitter is about 3 months given that it is used within 5 months from the day it arrives at your place. Once, this period is over, you will need to purchase a new Dexcom G6 Transmitter.
So, it is recommended that you have your new transmitter in hand within 3 months of starting your old transmitter. But, if you haven’t got any 10-day transmitter battery life warning, you can continue to use the same old transmitter for the next session.
If you have already received the 10 days battery warning for the transmitter and now the days remaining are less than 10 days, then you won’t be able to start a new session with it and you will see a “Pair New Transmitter” notification.