The Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 was officially released on August 5, 2020, an opportunity to take stock of the new features included in this fourth connected watch from the Korean brand. The name is explained to make the range easier to understand and to avoid problems between the first generation Watch and the 2 versions of the Active.
It is taking a big step forward in health, with blood pressure measurement and validation of its EKG application by the FDA, the US Food and Drug Administration.
In the Galaxy Watch war against Apple Watch, Samsung’s developments have been aimed on the one hand at closing the gap (FDA-validated ECG, fall detection) and trying to get ahead (measuring blood pressure). The Galaxy Watch 3 takes a short advantage, pending the release of the Apple Watch 6.
By the way, don’t look, there has never been a Galaxy Watch 2.
A move upmarket which clearly places it in direct competition with the Apple Watch Serie 5.
Introducing the Galaxy Watch 3
The Galaxy Watch 3 range is divided according to 2 criteria:
The size of the case: 45 and 41mm, it is 1mm narrower than the previous generation
The presence or absence of an LTE connection, which allows the watch to use the 3G / 4G network completely independently (without any smartphone)
After that, I will pass you for the moment the other steel / titanium case criteria or the color versions.
The screen is AMOLED type, with a resolution of 360 x 360 pixels, 30mm wide for the 41mm version and 35mm wide for the 46mm version. These are the same dimensions as the screens of the Fenix 6S and Fenix 6X. On top of it, it’s a Gorilla glass DX.
But above all, around the screen, we find the rotating bezel which serves as an interface for navigating the menus. It’s very practical, super suited to the Tizen interface (Samsung’s proprietary OS), but it had disappeared on the Galaxy Watch Active 1 and 2. Galaxy Watch lovers will be reassured.
It is also 15% thinner than the old Galaxy Watch.
It is also more robust, it meets the MIL-STD-810G standard. This is quite impressive, since it reflects the fact that it is as robust as the Garmin Instinct. Or that this standard is ultimately not that demanding …
Autonomy is announced at 2 days. This is a disappointment, because the previous Galaxy Watch expected 4 days of battery life. But hey, you can’t add sensors, downsize, and increase battery life at the same time.
The list of sensors becomes very long:
Blood oxygenation (SpO2)
At the moment, blood pressure measurement is only activated in South Korea. We will have to wait for an update to have it in France. And this measurement has not yet been validated by an FDA-type body to guarantee the reliability of the measurements, unlike the ECG.
There are also some additions on the sports side, with now 40 sports profiles of which 7 are capable of auto-detecting and recording activity.
In sports analysis, it will not be limited to measuring VO2max. There is also the addition of running dynamics, like those found at Garmin and Coros: ground contact time, left / right balance, vertical oscillation, rigidity, regularity.
On the connections side:
-LTE for LTE models
The microphone + speaker + assistant combination Bixby will allow you to take phone calls directly from the watch, as well as to control it by voice.
The NFC chip also makes it compatible with contactless payment.
The 8GB of memory will allow you to store music.
Samsung has worked with the US National Sleep Institute to improve sleep tracking.
Stress level tracking and fall detection have been added.
Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 design
The model takes the assertive style of the first Galaxy Watch with the physical rotating bezel which gives it an analog watch look. The small detail of changes is the cylindrical shape of the two crowns on the right. Convenient for right-handed people or for those who wear their watch on their left wrist.
.41 mm (Wifi) or 45 mm (eSIM 4G / LTE) case
.1.2 inch and 1.4 inch Super AMOLED touchscreen respectively
.Waterproof IP 68 to 5 ATM (swimming pool or sea, but not in scuba diving).
.20mm strap for the 41mm case and 22mm for the 45mm case (compatible with all straps of the original Samsung Watch).
Galaxy Watch 3 personalization
It is available in two dial sizes to adapt to the morphology of each: 41 mm and 45 mm. Currently presented in three colors:
.Silver or gilded bronze in 41 mm
.Bronze or black for the 45mm version.
You can change the bottom of your dial at will to personalize it according to your tastes or your outfit. Thus, the Samsung Galaxy 3 watch is available in a total of 9 variations.
.45 mm case with titanium strap.
Black Bluetooth and links
.45 mm case with leather strap
Bluetooth black titanium and titanium bracelet links.
Black Stainless Steel Bluetooth
.4G black steel
Bluetooth steel silver
.4G steel silver
Samsung Galaxy Watch 3, 41 mm case with leather strap
Silver Stainless Steel Bluetooth
.4G steel silver
Golden bronze stainless steel Bluetooth
Golden bronze 4G stainless steel
Samsung Galaxy 3 model prices
Compatible smartphones Galaxy Watch 3
The watch and apps are compatible with smartphones
Android 5.0+ (with at least 1.5 GB of RAM),
Apple iPhone 5+ running iOS 9.0+
To work with your phone you need to install the Samsung Galaxy Wearable App (Android) or Samsung Galaxy Watch (iOS).
Characteristics Galaxy Watch 3
We are not dealing with a Wear OS watch with the Snapdragon Wear 3100 SoC, but a Samsung Exynos 9110 chip, associated with 1 GB of RAM and 8 GB of storage space. This new model of connected watch embeds the new Tizen OS interface.
. Touch screen with 360 x 360 resolution.
.New version of the Tizen Os in-house operating system. This interface centered on the brand’s smartphone to simplify the user experience.
.Increases from 1.5 to 2 GB for RAM and 4 to 8 GB for internal storage, good news for Spotify offline syncs.
.ECG sensor for monitoring heart rate and blood pressure
Integrated .GPS (A-GPS, GLONASS and Beidou)
.NFC chip for Samsung Pay
.Improved battery from 247mAh to 340mAh.
Galaxy Watch 3 Features
From the Samsung Galaxy Watch app (Gear S), you can change the data display, select your favorite apps, or change your watch face. Here is my selection of the main features of the Watch 3:
Health monitoring with Samsung Health
.ECG for monitoring your heart rate also allowing stress management with breathing exercises.
.Improved sleep tracking. When you sleep, if you wear your watch, it analyzes your different phases of sleep in order to establish a record of your night.
.Alarm, calendar, reminder, email (Outllok instead of Samsung EMail), message.
. Daily activity monitoring (number of steps, number of floors, number of calories, HR).
Sports follow-up of 39 different activities.
.Train with apps like MyFitnessPal, MapMyRun, or the popular Strava.
Check the Weather forecast with the new version of the app.
.Music player (Spotify or others), with the ability to listen to music without your smartphone with the LTE version.
You can even travel the world with confidence, as the Watch 3 supports real-time voice and text translation in over 16 languages (German, English, Arabic, Chinese, Danish, Korean, Spanish, Finnish, French, Hindi, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese, Russian, Russian, Vietnamese).
NFC chip, for contactless payment with your watch thanks to Samsung Pay (already deployed on the Gear S3 and the Gear Sport).
To adjust settings and your notifications, you use the free Galaxy Wearable app compatible with Android and iOS smartphones.
Health monitoring with heart rate
Basic health monitoring is compatible with the Samsung Health home app (do not take Samsung Fit). For example, this allows you to stream a training video from the Galaxy Health app to your watch screen.
Like the Apple Watch Series 5, the Galaxxy Watch 3 is equipped with various sensors useful for monitoring activity and connected health: continuous heart rate monitoring, built-in GPS, water resistance up to 50 meters and more of 30 different exercises. On the other hand, the Apple Series 5 has a compass, not present on the Samsung.
But, the big news is the integration of an ECG sensor to monitor your heart rate in the background. Better, it will send you notifications in case of risk of atrial fibrillation. This feature is active in the United States because Samsung has obtained clearance from the US Health Authority (FDA). It will now have to be validated for Europe and receive the precious CE sesame.
Thus, Samsung approaches the specifications of the Apple Watch S5. Indeed, there is also a fall sensor. This means that the watch can detect a sudden fall, trigger an alert and even automatically contact emergency services or people you select in the app.
The Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 is equipped with GPS and adds new tracking for running. A guide that provides you with real-time feedback on form and pace, as well as post-workout analysis. However, this function is not yet activated, it will be activated by software update.
It also measures maximum VO2 (maximum oxygen uptake) values to determine your level of fitness.
Galaxy Watch 3 offers better sleep tracking than Apple Watch
Since the Apple Watch Series 3, users will all benefit from sleep tracking thanks to the WatchOS 7 update scheduled for Q3 2020. But for now, this is only possible through third-party applications. . While the Galaxy Watch 3 takes advantage of its feedback from previous models to offer precise sleep tracking. The watch thus analyzes the four phases of your sleep in order to provide advice on how to sleep better.
Battery life and charge of the Samsung Galaxy Watch 3
A power battery suitable for the 2 models:
LTE-4G connection has a 340 mAh battery.
While the Wi-Fi version, which uses less energy, has a 237 mAh battery.
In both cases, more power (230mAh battery on the Galaxy Watch Active), but also a watch that will consume more with the addition of health sensors. One day’s minimum battery life is within the category standard. It can be as long as two days by limiting the use of very demanding functions such as GPS or video playback.
But what makes the difference is, in addition to conventional charging, it can be charged directly on the back of your Galaxy S smartphone.
Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 best price
The best current health and sports smartwatches
The essential Apple Watch series 4 or series 5 (from $450 )
The latest Withings, a special connected health monitoring CE standards, the Scanwatch (from $249, released in September 2020)
Apple Watch style, but more limited, the Fitbit Versa 3 ($199 )
More affordable, the Withings Move ECG at less than $130 (September 2019)
Effective alternative in first price the latest Xiaomi Mi Band 5 bracelet at $36 (July 2020)