Samsung Gear S3 Frontier Edition:
Most people would say smartwatches are not the in thing anymore, but looking at how apple still has it’s wearable, this didn’t stop Samsung from making its own premium wearable. The Gear S3 is available in two models, the Frontier and the Classic.
I’ll be reviewing the Frontier edition, which is a big watch, and a more refined design as compared to other available smartwatches. It looks like Samsung has included every feature it could think of, but is the Gear S3 worth it, and does it still make sense to buy one. In the box, provided are a wireless charger, a micro USB charger, a small size band, if the default one is too big for your hands.
The Gear S3 Frontier runs on Samsung’s own homegrown Tizen platform, unlike Android wear 2 and Watch OS on apple watches.
So what does this mean for consumers, the number of available apps are limited, and a few features like Samsung pay is yet to roll out to india.
It has a 1.3 inch 360×360 AMOLED display, and a dual core 1GHZ cpu. RAM is at 768 MB,and also has 4gb of memory which can be used to store songs , and you can pair bluetooth headphones to the watch, and you wouldn’t need a phone for music playback. It has a small speaker on the left which is moderate quality, but does sound tinny, and a microphone on the right to make calls.
Like the earlier Gear S2 the S3 has a rotating bezel to navigate through your apps and notifications. It’s ip68 certified so is water and dust resistant, but is not suitable for swimming, so don’t jump into a pool with this on.Basically it can be dunked to a depth of 1.5 metres, for upto 30 minutes. It also passes the Military specification MIL-STD-810G, meaning it can withstand extreme temperatures, can survive drops from 4.9 feet, dust, shock/vibration resistant, rain resistant and also resistant to pressure and altitude changes. It has an inbuilt GPS, fitness tracking and can also monitor your heart rate, automatically throughout the day, and the value is saved into your s-health app.
Wireless charging is supported by the watch, and the included wireless charger, has magnets that keep the watch in place. Samsung claims 4 days of battery life. That would be true if you don’t touch your watch, realistically, we get around 1.5 to 2 days of battery life, which is better than most smartwatches.
There are buttons on the side of the watch, the one on top is the back button, which takes you back one screen when in an app. Below is the home button, which also pulls up your app menu. A short cut can also be set , say if you double tap on the home button, you can have s-voice popup, which is the default, or set to calendar, settings, s-health etc, only few apps are supported, and not all apps are listed here. A triple tap initiates the SOS feature , which you could have send an sms or also make a call to preset contacts on your phone. The message includes your location details and also a link to a map via the glympse service.
The metal bezel on the face is tactile and rotates to cycle through your screen options. Rotate clockwise for widgets and apps , like weather, contacts, steps, barometer, music controls, and news etc, anti clockwise for notifications, like facebook, whatsapp, messages etc.
Messages on the watch can be replied to via canned messages already included or by swiping individual letters. It’s not that accurate, but gets the job done.
The gear s3 can pair with Android phones and even iphones, with the advent of an iOS version of the gear app. It did take quite long to pair, even though i used a samsung phone.
Looking at all the features provided by the Gear S3, its a beautiful watch, with a plethora of features, and military specification means its rugged, and the touch screen is pretty responsive.
The fitness tracking features are provided via s-health, and would please most gym/running/ walking enthusiasts out there. The reason i picked this watch, is the design, it looks better than most android wear options available, and of course the apple watch. Tizen doesn’t have the app support that androidwear 2 and watchOS have, but for most users, this is an awesome choice, and you wouldn’t go wrong with this.