Let’s face it, Google’s smartwatch strategy still has a lot of catching up to do with the Apple Watch. While WearOS has improved over the years, it has been disappointed by poor hardware. Hopefully things should improve with Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon Wear 4100 SoC in future smartwatches, but that remains to be seen. Companies like Samsung and Huawei have gone their own way, with internal hardware and software solutions.
Our previous experience with previous models of Samsung Galaxy watches has been very positive, and it’s time to see if Samsung has another winner in their hands.
Watch Samsung Galaxy 3 design
The Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 has a modified design, but is still designed to look like a classic watch, similar to the previous model. It has a circular dial with a rotating bezel, but instead of two flattened buttons on the right, you get traditional-looking cylindrical heels. The Galaxy Watch 3 is available with a dial of 41 mm or 45 mm and both variants are made of stainless steel. You can also opt for Bluetooth or LTE models in any dial size. The LTE variants have a thin red stripe on one of the body buttons. Samsung does not offer a choice of watch straps, and all variants come with a leather strap. These can be easily replaced with other belts if necessary.
The Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 uses a 1.4-inch Super Amoled display with a resolution of 360×360 and a Corning Gorilla Glass DX glass to protect it from scratches. The display is excellent, with good brightness, impressive colors and sharp text. The watch cover is IP68 for its dust and water resistance and also features military durability with a mil-STD-810G certification.
The 45mm version of the Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 is only available in Mystic Black and Mystic Silver. If you crave the new mystical bronze color, which Samsung advertises a lot, you will have to be content with the 41 mm variant.
In the box you will receive only the watch, a wireless powered station and documentation. The Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 adheres to the charger with magnets, but the base of the charger can also adhere magnetically to metal surfaces.
From a build quality and design perspective, I think Samsung did a fantastic job with the Galaxy Watch 3. It feels premium and looks great, and the 45mm version is surprisingly not as heavy (53.8 g) as I expected. I just want Samsung to offer more options for watch bands at the time of purchase, rather than forcing you to buy the one you really want separately.
Features of Samsung Galaxy Watch 3
The Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 is powered by a dual-core SoC Exynos 9110 and has 1 GB of RAM and 8 GB of memory (4.3 GB usable). There are Bluetooth 5, Wifi-n, GPS, NFC and sensors such as an accelerometer, barometer, gyroscope, ambient light sensor and heart rate sensor. At the bottom of the watch there are red LEDs and an infrared sensor that allows you to estimate your oxygen content in the blood (SpO2). The LTE version I have for review supports an eSIM for 4G connectivity, so you can receive notifications and calls when you are far away from your phone.
The Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 has a 340 mAh battery that would provide just over two full days of “typical”use. The watch can also be charged with Qi standard wireless chargers, including smartphones that support reverse wireless powered, such as Samsung’s Wireless PowerShare feature in phones such as the Galaxy S20+.
The Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 can also monitor blood pressure and take an ECG( electrocardiogram), but these features are not currently available on devices sold in India. Even Samsung Pay is not found on Indian models, which is strange considering that Samsung’s phones fully support it.