Tue. Dec 5th, 2023

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Common readers know that I can normally be discovered with a smartwatch on one wrist and a Garmin GPS sports activities watch on the opposite. Quite the opposite, my oldest daughter has lengthy been a Fitbit person. However over the previous six months, her Fitbit Sense’s battery life has been removed from ultimate, and the watch has continually been shedding Bluetooth connection.

Additionally: You principally needn’t cost this Garmin smartwatch

Thankfully, the timing could not have been higher for her, as a result of earlier than heading off to purchase one other Fitbit, Garmin had simply despatched me its new Venu 3S to check. Given my daughter’s need for a smaller watch that matched the scale of the Sense, I let her test it out.

The mannequin that we examined was priced at $449 and got here in a trendy stainless-steel end with a sage grey case. And after spending weeks every day driving the wearable, my daughter has been transformed. Here is why.


Garmin Venu 3S

The Garmin Venu 3S is a well being and wellness-focused smartwatch that may final greater than per week with typical use.

My daughter’s first response to opening up the Venu 3S was shock on the prime quality match, end, and construct of the Garmin watch. She has seen and held my bigger, chunky, and utilitarian Garmin watches earlier than and the class of the Venu 3S instantly grabbed her consideration. The silicone band can be very easy and feels very similar to the high-end Apple Sport band towards the wrist. 

It’s possible you’ll recall that Garmin’s Venu sequence is one of the best smartwatch competitor to the Apple Watch and Samsung Galaxy Watch, with a microphone and speaker that helps cellphone calls from the wrist and voice assistant by way of a related smartphone. It additionally was the primary Garmin sequence to sport an AMOLED show and that’s nonetheless the case right here.

Matthew Miller/ZDNET

I examined the be careful for a number of days to expertise the brand new and/or improved Venu 3/3S options after which handed the watch to my daughter to check out for per week. Garmin improved the Venu 3/3S over the Venu 2 Plus with the next updates:

Two obtainable sizesGarmin Elevate V5 optical heart-rate sensorMulti-GNSS supportLonger battery lifeWheelchair exercise supportMorning Report, sleep coach, jetlag advisor, and extra utilitiesEnhanced health options, akin to HRV monitoring, restoration time, perceived exertion, and new sports activities profilesUpdated person interface

Additionally: Critical about health? This new Garmin is a near-perfect sports activities watch

The value stays the identical as earlier than, which is nice contemplating the present financial setting and the entire enhancements within the watch. It’s a strong competitor to a smartwatch for these searching for a watch targeted on superior well being and wellness options somewhat than a protracted listing of third-party purposes.

Matthew Miller/ZDNET

Since I’m a every day Garmin person of watches with 5 {hardware} buttons, it took me a few days to get used to the three-button design and up to date person interface. The precise three buttons and display swipes carry out the next features: 

Swipe left to proper for shortcut appSwipe up and down for chosen widgetsTop proper button: Single press for actions and apps, press-hold for fast controls Heart proper button: Single press for latest apps, press-hold for voice assistantBottom proper button: Single press goes again, press-hold for entry to observe face, clocks, settings Matthew Miller/ZDNET

We examined cellphone calls to and from the watch, they usually sounded excellent on each the watch and the cellphone the decision was made to. You’ll be able to both use a touchscreen dial display or name contacts saved in your contact listing. Arms-free calling from a watch is a superb characteristic if you find yourself collaborating in an exercise and wish each fingers. That is undoubtedly one characteristic I might like to see on high-end Garmin watches sooner or later.

Additionally: Garmin Forerunner 265 vs 965: Which smartwatch must you purchase?

The voice assistant additionally works nicely and we examined Siri with Apple iPhone units. The watch works as a speaker/mic for Siri, with the ensuing particulars proven on the iPhone show and offered audibly on the watch. One other good options of the Venu 3S is that music may be performed straight through the speaker on the watch, one thing that’s not doable on an Apple Watch. Samsung helps this characteristic too and generally I like only a little bit of background music, so having this selection is nice.

Matthew Miller/ZDNET

My daughter goes for a lot of walks and hikes in Colorado and enjoys a day nap infrequently, so she liked the brand new help for nap monitoring. The Venu 3S will routinely monitor your naps and it’s pretty correct. One cool characteristic that comes with nap monitoring is the presentation of the influence a nap has in your Physique Battery studying. You need to see a optimistic quantity subsequent to your nap.

Additionally: This Garmin does issues the Apple Watch Extremely cannot

The unique problem that prompted my daughter to present Garmin a strive was the failed battery lifetime of her Fitbit. The Garmin Venu 3S is marketed as having as much as 10 days of battery life and to this point along with her every day routine it has intently matched that efficiency. So long as it goes for per week along with her strolling, mountain climbing, sleeping, and residing then she is happy. The Garmin Venu 3S is a winner and given Google’s give attention to having the Pixel Watch take over for Fitbit watches, we might even see extra folks undertake Garmin watches to fill the Fitbit hole.

ZDNET’s shopping for recommendation

In case you are searching for a well being and wellness watch that lasts longer than one or two days, then the Garmin Venu 3S is an impressive possibility. With help for taking and making calls out of your wrist, voice assistant out of your wrist, and smartphone notifications, it could fill all of the roles you sometimes use on a smartwatch. Add within the huge Garmin help for amassing and serving to you employ the information captured daily and night time, then you have got a watch that’s robust to beat.

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