Asus Zenwatch 3 Review

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The hãng asus ZenWatch 3 runs for around $200 on Amazon, depending on the day you go looking for it & the màu sắc you want. It has a fully round 1.39-inch AMOLED display that automatically gets just bright enough lớn see in sunlight. That display is surrounded by a small bezel lớn protect it from scratches, và it sits atop a blessedly thin 10mm body.

To get that thinness, asus excised a bunch of stuff that you might expect from a smartwatch: there’s no GPS, no cellular modem, và (most surprisingly khổng lồ me) no heart rate monitor. Unlike some other app android Wear watches released this year, you can’t spin the crown to scroll.

The ZenWatch 3 does have two more buttons on it that you can customize lớn launch any phầm mềm you’d like. I mix one lớn weather and one to lớn calendar, which frees me up khổng lồ use a more elegant watchface that isn’t cluttered up with a bunch of complications.

What that particular constellation of features means is that the ZenWatch isn’t a great choice for somebody who’s hoping to lớn really use it for health tracking. It’ll count your steps và do some basic tracking with either Asus’ own software or Google Fit, but a fitness device this is not.



A better use for the ZenWatch 3 than fitness is that các mục of basic smartwatch stuff I talked about above. It definitely lasts a day, and it definitely handless all the basic notification and glanceable information stuff simply và easily.

Well, mostly easily. I’ve been watching the rocky transition to app android Wear 2.0 for a while & it’s safe khổng lồ say that the platform has some issues. For me, the main hassle is that I don’t lượt thích how it doesn’t display notifications persistently anymore. (The apple Watch has the same issue.) I’ve also found watches that are upgraded to game android Wear 2.0 (as opposed lớn those that ship with it) khổng lồ be a little slower than I would like. The ZenWatch 3 is no exception, but it’s not perniciously slow lượt thích the very first generations smartwatches were years ago. It’s just a little pokey.

A big reason for many of the changes you’ll find in android Wear 2.0 was to lớn make it more useful when paired lớn an iPhone. Despite the changes, however, I wouldn’t recommend it for iPhone users. It still feels lượt thích a thủ thuật because third parties don't have as much access to lớn the OS as Apple's own watch does. It’s still best when used with an apk device.

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As for aesthetics, I’m basically fine with the options that asus offers: black, silver, & gold. I vì find the gold ring around the screen to lớn be a little gaudy, however.

A bigger problem for some is that the watch has “wings” that the bands attach to, instead of the standard lugs you find on most watches. Although the bands bởi vì come with quick-release pins, finding new bands to fit your style that also match the non-standard attachments is either going lớn require a lot of hunting or a lot of skill with an Xacto knife.

If you’re looking for an apk Wear watch, the options out there right now can seem both overwhelming & underwhelming. A bunch of them are coming from fashion brands like Michael Kors and Fossil, which take the same basic technology stack & apply different designs and styles khổng lồ it. The rest are from brands like Huawei & LG. Xe máy is out. Và even asus itself is reported to lớn be bailing on the platform.

The move, I think, is lớn make your own menu of what you want from a smartwatch & then go out and find something that hits those bullet points. They’re out there, but there’s no single game android Wear watch that I think is clearly better than any other. They’re all an exercise in compromise. You just need to figure out which compromises you’re willing khổng lồ make.

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The ZenWatch’s particular phối of compromises makes it a decent watch for people who just want the basics. There's no shame in the basics, but there’s not much ambition either.