Samsung Galaxy Watch : Performance And Software
- Dated chipset yet reasonable performance
- 1GB of RAM and 8GB of storage
- Runs Tizen, not Wear OS
The Galaxy Watch 3 is running on the same chipset that powered the original Galaxy Watch from Samsung, which may disappoint some, although we didnt find this to be an issue when using the smartwatch.
Apps loaded as quickly as wed expect them to, and thats partly due to the 1GB of RAM included here, which seemed to be enough. An odd element is the LTE version of the original Galaxy Watch sported 1.5GB of RAM, but the company has seen fit to drop that here.
Processing power isnt often a major thing on a smartwatch though theres less to run here than on a typical phone and we found that the Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 continued to perform well throughout our entire time testing it.All versions of the device come with 8GB of storage, and we found the OS and pre-loaded apps were already using 3.59GB of this space, so if you want to fill your watch up with apps and music youll have around 4GB to use.
The Galaxy Watch 3 is running Samsungs Tizen software, which had been used for a few years on Samsung’s smartwatches by this point, but notably the newer Galaxy Watch 4 has moved back to Wear OS.
The latest Tizen OS 5.5 software is on offer here, and if youve used a Samsung smartwatch in the few years prior to this model you’ll know what to expect this is accomplished software, although Samsungs ecosystem doesnt have as many third-party apps as watchOS or Wear OS.
Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 Review: The Verdict
Samsungs watches have always tried to do everything. Think of a modern smartwatch feature and the Galaxy Watch 3 probably has it. Throwing in too many features often results in a lot of missed opportunities, but I think Samsung actually delivered in most areas here.
Outside of hardware and design, I dont think the Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 is the best wearable you can buy in any one particular category. Garmin and Fitbit watches are more accurate with fitness and health, and Wear OS has a better app ecosystem. But the Galaxy Watch 3 is so well-rounded overall, I wont hesitate to say its one of the best smartwatches you can buy for your Android or iPhone.
The Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 is the best smartwatch you can buy for your Android phone.
Maybe the bar for acceptable Android watches is just so low that it leaves me to gush about a watch that simply doesnt fall flat on its face. Even so, I think well-roundedness counts for something when weve had so many watches attempt and fail to be the be-all, end-all Apple Watch killer.
It certainly has its shortcomings, but I think many people will be really happy with the Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 provided they can stomach the high price tag.
Accuracy And Battery Life Samsung Galaxy Watch 3
Battery life is a bit limited given the range of sensors and especially that beautiful AMOLED screen. Have it on, it will suck your battery in less than a day. At the same time the watch learns your patterns and over time manages to last longer and longer on battery but I never made it more than 36 hours.
I also never reached the limit on the GPS activity. Tracked runs up to 1 hour with plenty battery left.
In terms of accuracy the GPS is great. Connects fast and for what Ive seen its quite smart in understanding where you really are. The HR monitor though is hit and miss. When it tracks I believe is great but there are many times where for whatever reason the HR is not tracked at all.
Im contacting Samsung about this to see if its an issue with my unit or if its something common.
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Sleep Tracking Finally Makes Sense On The Galaxy Watch 3
One of my biggest complaints about the sleep tracking feature on the original Galaxy Watch was that it provided little context about your sleep habits, especially for if you don’t know much about sleep to begin with.
The Watch 3 has learned a lot from the mistakes of its predecessors, and now gives a more comprehensive look at your night. It gives you a full breakdown of the stages of sleep , and compares yours with a normal range. It also gives you a score based on these factors.
I’ve never found the score to be helpful, but having the context of seeing my data compared with a normal range helped me figure out how to get the most out of my sleep. While my total sleep time was good, I found I wasn’t spending much time in “deep” sleep compared with what’s typical. I tried going to bed an hour earlier, and though my total sleep time didn’t change, I was able to extend my deep sleep time and felt more rested in the morning.
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Its All About The Bezel
The simple look and feel of the Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 are hits, but its rotating bezel comes to define this smartwatch design.
It doesnt turn smoothly, but with a satisfying mechanical click roughly every 15 degrees. You use the bezel to navigate the interface.
Scroll from the watch face and youll see page after page of function widgets. These let you see your heart rate, start an activity, check your daily stats, see the weather and more.
Bezel control makes the Galaxy Watch 3 special
You choose your Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 widgets in the Samsung Wearable app on your phone.
These pages scroll by as fast as your finger travels, and its a key part of why the watch feels more responsive than a Wear OS watch. Its quick and responsive, and the hardware seems at one with the software.
This is a rarity in smartwatches, which can seem fiddly.
Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 Battery Life
Where the new Galaxy Watch seems to fall short of the previous model is battery life. Unlike the 4-day stamina of the original Galaxy Watch, the Galaxy Watch 3s 340 mAh battery is rated for 2 days. Thats fair for smartwatch standards and likely contributes to the slimmed-down design.
The Galaxy Watch 3 lives up to Samsung’s battery estimates. Even with hour-long workouts and sleep tracking in the first two days I wore it, the watch lasted about 2 days. However, when I enabled the always-on display setting, the battery life dropped to 24 hours in its second cycle. Still, this is better than my Apple Watch 5.
When it needs more juice, the Galaxy Watch 3 can be charged with its proprietary charge or via wireless power share with a compatible Samsung phone. I tried out this for the sake of keeping my bedside table organized, too.
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Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 Review: How Could It Be Better
Sadly, despite all the improvements as far as fitness features are concerned, the Galaxy Watch 3 still falls some way short of being a truly great sports watch. If youre a serious runner or cyclist, youll be disappointed to find theres no option to manually set your heart-rate zones in the Samsung Health app, for instance.
That might not be a problem for everyone, but because I have a higher maximum heart rate than the 220-minus-your-age formula suggests, this means the watch can easily overestimate the intensity of my workouts. I suspect this may also have figured in the Galaxy Watch 3 estimating a notably lower VO2 max than my Garmin watch, though Ill update this review if this resolves over the course of more workouts.
Another blow for fitness junkies is that theres still no option to use a Bluetooth HR monitor in conjunction with the watchs native fitness apps. Thankfully I found the optical sensor to be fairly accurate, which is good news, but those wanting the very greatest accuracy from a chest strap will be better off looking elsewhere.
Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro Review: Battery Insanity
Samsung made one of the most significant changes to its smartwatch lineup last year. The Galaxy Watch 4 ditched Samsungs Tizen OS in favor of the Android-powered Wear OS. This meant users could finally get Android apps and ultimately even use Google Assistant on their smartwatches.
The company usually releases two new models of its smartwatch. It has a different strokes for different folks approach for the lineup. Nowhere is that more evident than the Galaxy Watch 5 Pro. Though it has the same technical specs as the Galaxy Watch 5, the Pro is aimed at people who live adventurous and active lifestyles.
Is it all that Samsung makes it out to be? Can it be the perfect companion on your hiking, biking and spelunking adventures? That the question well be answering in our Galaxy Watch 5 Pro review.
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Change Heart Rate Monitoring Settings
How often your Galaxy Watch runs Heart Rate Monitoring? Measure continuously? Well, to be honest, Measure Continuously is good for your health but it isnt for your Galaxy Watch as it constantly drains the battery out of Watch.
However, it can be tweaked, go to the Heart rate monitoring widget, and tap on the Settings gear, select 10 min while still.
Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 Review: Value And The Competition
The Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 is usually available on , Samsung, Best Buy, and other retailers. The watch launched at $399.99, but you can regularly find it on sale at most retailers. LTE models are available from Verizon and AT& T starting at $449.99.
Even in 2022, thats a lot of money for a smartwatch, no matter how good it is. That starting price is over $100 more than the Galaxy Watch Active 2 sold for at launch, and $70 more than the original Galaxy Watch. But is it $70-$100 better? I dont think so. Samsung improved the hardware over the original watch, so thats a bonus, though I dont think the software has improved enough for the company to charge this much.
Apples latest smartwatch, the Apple Watch Series 7, is the Galaxy Watch 3s biggest competitor. Each device offers a similar feature set and comes in various sizes and connectivity options. The Galaxy Watch 3 is compatible with Android and iPhones, but youll get the best experience if youre using a Samsung phone. The Apple Watch is only compatible with iOS. Considering the Galaxy Watch 3s age, the Apple Watch Series 6 is also worth a mention here.
The is also available now, which adds more sensors and has better hardware than the Galaxy Watch 3. , but odds are if youre looking for a recent Galaxy Watch, youll find something to like in the Galaxy Watch 4 series. Most importantly, the Galaxy Watch 4 series is also much cheaper, starting at just $249.
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Galaxy Watch : Should You Buy It
The Galaxy Watch 5 earns its crown as the new best Android smartwatch with that small battery boost and the improved Sapphire glass. Both features easily justify the $30 increase, especially when Apples Sapphire Crystal Glass watch models are more than double the price of the Watch 5. If you dont have an Android watch right now but want the most seamless experience, the Galaxy Watch 5 is absolutely the watch to buy provided you dont want to hold out another two months and see what the severely overdue Google Pixel Watch is up to.
That said, the experience on the Pixel Watch is going to be vastly different than the Watch 5 because it will be Googles first in-house Wear OS watch and first in-house watch UI. Samsung, on the other hand, has been refining One UI Watchs layout and look for half a decade and they have it down to a science. So, even with the Pixel Watch on the horizon, you might be better off with the Watch 5s known quality, dependability, and experience.
Until someone else can prove themselves, Samsung doesnt have pull out all the stops and dazzle us with its watches. It just has to be consistent and quality, which Samsung has delivered with the Galaxy Watch 5 even if the battery claims fell a bit short.
The only people who should not buy this watch are owners of the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 or Watch 4 Classic. The Watch 5s differences vs. the Galaxy Watch 4 are too small to be worth spending hundreds of dollars again.
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Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 V Watch : Initial Verdict
So how does the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 and the Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 match up?
From a design perspective, you’re obviously getting more size options with the Watch 4 and benefiting from improved screens. The Galaxy Watch 4 Classic doesn’t feel hugely different from the Watch 3 in look, though the physical rotating bezel seems to dominate more on the newer Samsung smartwatch. We still think the screens on the Watch 3 hold up well too.
Features-wise, the Watch 4 is giving you that additional body composition analysis feature over the Watch 3 and it is running on Wear, which opens up the type of apps you have at your disposal. The Watch 3 though does still work with iPhones, though you’ve got an operating system that will be good for maybe 2-3 years before it starts to feel really old. By then you might want a different smartwatch anyway.
You can’t really separate them based on battery numbers and while the Watch 4 has a newer Exynos processor, we can’t say we found the Watch 3 particularly sluggish in the performance department.
If you go for the Watch 3, you’re still getting a good looking watch that’s still feature packed and its hardware doesn’t feel dated.
But you will most notably miss out on the new Wear experience.
The Watch 4 gives you the best Samsung has to offer with multiple sizes and the Wear operating system that Samsung has helped to build and will look to improve and enhance with Tizen eventually left behind
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Battery Life Differs Per Size
The battery life of the Samsung Galaxy Watch3 differs per watch size. Samsung says that the battery of the 41mm Watch3 lasts up to 43 hours. The battery of the Watch3 45mm lasts up to 56 hours. I turned on the always-on function, so the screen is always on. With this function, the battery lasts about 24 hours.
Use A Dark Watch Face
As we mentioned above, the Galaxy Watch 3 uses an AMOLED display. AMOLED displays can individually adjust each pixels power and color.
And whenever there is a black background, the pixels turn off completely.
This means that whenever your watch displays something black, it actually doesnt display anything at all.
That part of the screen is completely powered off. And thats why using a dark Watch Face is one of the best ways to increase battery life on Galaxy Watch 3 devices.
In fact, thats also one of the main reasons why most of the Watchs UI is dark.
To change your Watch Face:
You can also add more Watch Faces or customize the ones that are to your liking.
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Optimize Battery If You Use Too Many Apps
The Galaxy Watch smartwatches may not have as many compatible apps as the Apple Watch, but its safe to say the numbers are fairly decent. And if you already cant do without the limited options, the best solution would be to keep an eye on the apps state.
Like old smartphones, apps may continue to consume battery even when you are not actively using them.
The Optimize Battery mode on your watch takes care of issues like these. Hence, make sure to optimize the watch battery from time to time. To do so, head over to the Quick Settings menu and tap on the battery-shaped icon, which will take you to the Power Saving screen.
Rotate the bezel clockwise, and you will see the option for Optimize. The Battery Optimize mode also takes care of screen brightness and screen time if they are cranked too high.
Besides that, you can also check your watchs battery stats to see which app chugs the maximum juice.
To do that, select the About Phone option on the app and tap on the Battery icon. Since I am using a non-Samsung watch, you can see that Samsung Health is chugging the maximum juice.
Turn Off The Connectivity Features
Some of the Samsung galaxy watch connectivity features you should turn off to reduce battery consumption include Bluetooth, WiFi, and Cellular Data . Here is how you can turn them off
It is vital to note that by turning off LTE/WiFi, you will not be able to use the internet on your Samsung galaxy watch.
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