Samsung Gear S3

SMART­WATCH, FIT­NESS TRACKER AND FASH­ION AC­CES­SORY ALL IN ONE. HAS SAMSUNG MADE A TIMEPIECE TO TOP­PLE THE BIG AP­PLE?

Australian T3 - - SELECT -

It’s no se­cret we loved the Gear S2, thanks to its easy-to-use na­ture and stylish ex­te­rior. For the S3 Samsung’s re­leased two ver­sions – Fron­tier and Clas­sic (pic­tured) – do­ing a re­mark­able job of mak­ing a smart­watch feel and look like a piece of kit you’d want to wear ev­ery day.

When com­pared to the S2, the Samsung Gear S3 Fron­tier is a big­ger, tougher and more at­trac­tive smart­watch that walks a fine line be­tween el­e­gance and rugged­ness. Its sig­na­ture ro­tat­ing bezel cy­cles through set­tings and op­tions with ease, feel­ing more pre­cise and sat­is­fy­ing than in the past. En­cased be­hind pro­tec­tive Corn­ing Go­rilla Glass SR+ (ex­clu­sive to this pre­mium Fron­tier edi­tion), the Gear S3’s Super AMOLED touch dis­play is sharp and bright – at times it looks like an analogue timepiece.

That rugged­ness ex­tends to its beefy in­ter­nals, too. With an IP68 wa­ter and dust re­sis­tance rat­ing, this will hap­pily sur­vive a trip to the shower or a (rel­a­tively shal­low) swim in fresh wa­ter. Bat­tery life’s also im­pres­sive, as we got three or four days out of it be­fore hav­ing to put it in its charg­ing cra­dle. Though the lo­cal ver­sion lacks the stand­alone LTE func­tion­al­ity in over­seas mod­els, the Gear S3 still per­forms when away from your phone, pro­vided both are con­nected to a Wi-Fi net­work. Aussies can use Samsung Pay with the S3, so you can make contactless pay­ments, and you can now fi­nally use it to take calls from your wrist — some­thing you’ve been able to do for a while now on most other smart­watches, but new to Samsung.

It’s also a smart fit­ness watch, read­ily mea­sur­ing steps, calo­ries burnt, and au­to­mat­i­cally de­tect­ing the ac­tiv­ity you’re en­gaged in. Throw in thou­sands of apps on the Tizen OS, and the Gear S3 left us im­pressed. While it works best with Samsung phones, it’ll also play nicely with any An­droid phone run­ning 4.4 or higher, and also works with iOS 9.0. How­ever, this is a watch for An­droid users, and it’s with­out a doubt one of the best you can get.

T3 RATES Stylish; fast; great bat­tery life; lovely bezel; the watch strap can be swapped for any stan­dard 22mm equiv­a­lent.

T3 SLATES Can’t use it swim­ming for too long or in salt wa­ter; so-so iOS in­te­gra­tion.

T3 SAYS A truly fan­tas­tic watch for new­com­ers and Gear fans.

ABOVE It’s easy to choose a new watch face on your phone, and sync it to the Gear S3. There are count­less free and pre­mium ver­sions, too.

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