The Asus ZenWatch 3 boasts an energy-efficient Qualcomm Snapdragon 2100 processor and a 1.39-inch AMOLED display with a pixel density of 287 pixels.
The strap is available in genuine leather or rubber. You can choose from black, dark brown or rose-gold and white color.
The Asus Zenwatch 3 price hovers around $229.99. For that price, you will get an Android watch with a luxurious look and feel.
To clear things first, don’t expect a fully-detailed Asus ZenWatch 3 review. Rather, I’ll just highlight the good, the bad, and the ugly things I found in this Android wear gadget.
But first, let’s see how Asus advertise for their ZenWatch 3. Watch this quick video.
… Terrible nail polish color, I agree… What were they thinking? Anyway, back to our review.
The Asus ZenWatch 3 Smartwatch Look & Feel
Everything about the ZenWatch 3 screams ‘premium quality’. It draws lots of attention for a good looking watch.
The round display looks great, rendering a screen that is easy to read. Touch is smooth and responsive enough.
Asus went all out in creating an optimal blend between the stainless steel frame and the leather strap. Still, we prefer a metal band.
As soon as you put it on, it feels like a natural fit. It is definitely going to catch the eyes of other gear lovers you might meet.
I mean, look at the coming photo below. It looks really nice, but looks can …
The only disadvantage of the design is that the strap attachment mechanism is non-standard.
That means you should really be willing to commit to the one provided with the watch. Owing to its expensive feel, though, I’m guessing this won’t be a turn-off for most.
Despite the overall elegant appearance, the three buttons on the ZenWatch 3 are awkwardly protruding from its right side and slightly deter from the sleek look.
However, if you’re searching for a timeless design with a bit of a modern edge, look no further!
The rotating bezel of the Samsung Gear S2 and S3 would have been a worthy addition to this watch also because it provides such an organic interaction mode.
You’ll have to get by just with the three buttons and the touch screen if you pick the ZenWatch 3, but hey! – you can customize one of the buttons, so that softens the blow somewhat.
As for watchfaces, Asus bundled 50 of them in the bundled App. They are … basic at most.
If you were looking for a nice watch face for your ZW3 (or any smart watch for that matter), go for World Timer Watch Face. It’s a nice free App.
See how it looks here below:
But I need to tell you about some other unfortunate surprises…
- There is no heart rate monitor, no GPS, no NFS on this android wearable watch.
- The vibration feature is so weak that you will notice its noise than the feel.
- Out of three buttons, only one is programmable.
- Pedometer is not that accurate in tracking steps. It will keep counting even while driving.
- The above goes for sleep tracking as well.
- When Asus first announced the ZW3, it hailed it as the first Android Wear 2.0 smartwatch. When Google delayed 2.0, Asus released the watch anyway.
The Asus ZenWatch 3 Specs
The ZenWatch 3 features a more customized version of Android Wear OS 1.5 (a.k.a with less features than what we hopped for!)
It also presents a better color matching with the actual device by superimposing gold text on a black or dark gray background.
The watch is rated IP67 for water resistance. That means you don’t need to worry about toning down your workout for fear of damaging it.
Having said that, I need to mention this…
Yes, the watch itself is water resistant. The leather strap is… not that much. If you are the type who gets his gear wet, steer away from the leather strap. AliExpress.com has you covered.
Yes, the lack of a heart-rate sensor reduces its appeal for people looking for an activity tracker. Especially since other manufacturers were sensible enough to introduce it.
The GPS feature is missing too, but we doubt that anyone will be complaining about that anytime soon, since you’re probably taking your phone with you anyway.
The ZenWatch 3 is marketed towards the impatient – the company has developed the HyperCharge technology to make sure that you are out and about with 60% of the battery in just 15 minutes.
On a full charge, you should be able to make it last for full day of moderate use.
Asus has included an external battery (worth about 40% of a full charge) in the package.Hence you’re always able to attach it to the back of the ZenWatch 3 to squeeze a bit more life out of it if you’re unable to plug it in.
The downside is that the watch will look and feel even bulkier. It might get quite uncomfortable to have something between the watch and your hand when wearing it.
Depending on the size of your hand, I can see some people ending up with an unnaturally tall gear.
Users have reported that switching off WiFi increases battery life of the ZW3. Can come handy if you can’t make it to a charger soon enough.
Asus ZenWatch 3 Verdict
If you’re into a more classical watch aesthetic and would much prefer a round one, in 2016 you are spoiled for choice by the new Asus ZenWatch 3 and the Samsung Gear S3.
As with most things in life, the choice boils down to your budget.
If money is not a problem, definitely go for the Gear S3, as it has better features (heart-rate sensor anyone?)
The amazing rotating bezel is something you’ll be infinitely thankful for.
Don’t get us wrong – if you want to buy ZenWatch 3 then it won’t be a bad purchase.
But you will, on occasion, find yourself pining for something else.
@Photos TechStage / Flickr.
A big thank you goes to Becky for her input in preparing this review.
You can buy the Asus ZenWatch 3 from Amazon for $229.
Now time to see how Asus advertises for their ZenWatch 3.