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I hadn't tested a Huawei/Honor watch for a long time because I didn't like the one I tested very much, but things have changed a lot. Honor is no longer part of the Huawei group and you no longer have to install proprietary Huawei apps to use it. The design and price of this watch clearly position it in the mid-range, it rises above most Chinese watches that I have tested in recent months. The design is one thing, but the reliability of the measurements (heart rate, number of steps, gps, etc.) must still be there because it is often at this level that watches show weaknesses. . [b][b]
- I usually buy the devices with my own money, so price is just as important as you are! - I keep the devices for at least a few weeks (sometimes more) to see what they are worth in real conditions. - I answer (when possible) your questions to help you decide before you buy - no one pays me to do these reviews, so I'm completely neutral and independent... - My pages are not filled with ads
The list below shows the prices for the Honor Watch GS3 from more than 50 sites around the world. If you are not satisfied with any price, you can subscribe to a price alert to be the first to be notified when the price drops.[b]
helpThe above links are affiliate links from companies such as Amazon, Gearbest, Aliexpress,... If you appreciate my work, I would be grateful if you could purchase these products through these links. It costs you absolutely nothing but I get a small commission that allows me to buy the material I test. Thank you very much!
June 24, 2022: receipt of the watch from Amazon, the test can begin.[b]
Waarom deze smartwatch?
I quite like testing watches because even if the test takes time, it's a type of product that I use every day (and not just to check the time of course). I appreciate the possibility of collecting information to track the number of steps, heartbeat, sleep, ... unfortunately these measures are often wrong for entry-level products, I hope it will not be the case of this watch but a priori in this price range, it should be good. [b][b] Honor broke away from Huawei and it's a good thing for the application part because Huawei forced the installation of a Huawei library before being able to install the watch application, this library did not necessarily work on all phones. So it was a bad experience but that's all in the past now and I'm going to start this test with a little more positive feeling.[b]
Structure of my tests
I test products according to a pre-established structure (see below) to provide you with maximum information. Unfortunately, this takes a lot of time. Unlike some sites where products are tested on a single day, I use the products I test for a minimum of a few weeks and sometimes even a few months. If the test is not complete at the time of your visit, I invite you to come back later or ask your question in the comment section below.
The box contains the bare minimum and that's fine. The watch is stuck in a display as if presenting a jewel and the rest of the accessories are hidden in the second part of the box. The box also contains a small magnetic charging station and its USB cable, it also contains the manual in several languages and a booklet for the guarantee. [b][b]
To take full advantage of the features of the watch, you must download the Honor Health application from the Play Store. The application is free and does not require the installation of additional applications as it was before. The setup procedure is very easy and similar to other apps I'm used to testing. [b][b]
After the association of the Honor Watch GS3 with the application, you will probably have to go through the update stage and in my case, that took over 20 minutes![b]
Watches are one of those objects for which the external appearance is important and on this criterion, the Honor Watch GS3 is doing really well. I was a little surprised at the size of the watch when I took it out of the box, I thought it was going to be bigger but once on my wrist it takes up almost exactly the width of my wrist so it is perfect. [b][b] I tested the black version of the watch, there are two other versions. I think it is mostly made of plastic but it gives a metallic effect. This plastic is totally rigid and of very good quality, there are no visible differences in the materials used. [b][b] The outside buttons look flimsy but because they stick out visibly from the watch face but I don't think that will cause any problems. Their position protects them from a shock or a collision, it would already be necessary to bend the wrist seriously so that they come into contact with an obstacle. [b][b]
At the back, we find the usual sensors, these seem to be integrated into a metal structure. The watch is still very light, it weighs 72 grams on the scale, it's almost double that of a Mi Smart Band bracelet, but it's still very light.
In the version tested, the strap is made of rigid black silicone. It can be detached and replaced, there are probably lots of straps in other colors but this black strap goes very well with the rest of the watch. It's stiff and doesn't move once it's installed, I think it should also hold up better over time than soft straps. The fastening system is made of metal and is accompanied by two brakes which prevent the superfluous part of the bracelet from being caught on clothing or another type of obstacle. [b][b]
The screen is quite large (1.43 inches) and is perfectly circular. We hardly see the limit with the display screen and its outline, the use of an AMOLED screen allows to obtain an infinite contrast where the black is really black... and that falls quite well with the color of this watch. [b][b]
The watch has Bluetooth connectivity to sync with the Honor Health app and it also has its own GPS chipset which will make it autonomous as far as you go. You can still use your smartphone's GPS signal by triggering the start of a sports session from the application, but this is not an obligation.[b]
The watch is advertised with a 14-day battery life, the battery has a capacity of 451 mAh. It will now take me a few weeks to verify this, I will update this paragraph when I have more information. [b][b] Update: [b] I get about 10 days of battery life with the following: auto screen on, auto brightness adjustment, metering permanent heart. I do between 1 to 2 hours of sport per week, I receive all my notifications on the watch, these are two other elements that have an influence on battery life. [b][b] With 10 days, this watch offers good battery life because with a screen of this size and the automatic ignition (when I lift my wrist) are elements that are not likely to to promote good autonomy.[b]
The Honor Watch GS3 uses a 1.43 inch amoled type screen with a resolution of 466 x 466px...this screen is superb. It is not only superb for its form or the materials used but it is also superb for the image which it is able to display. The icons and texts are perfectly readable, the screen also has a light sensor which will adapt its brightness to the ambient light. The light in my studio is quite strong (over 4000 lumens) but the screen is still very readable. It is clearly one of the best screens I have tested so far.
The Honor Watch GS3 has many features available either as widgets or as an entry in the watch's long menu. Here is an overview of the features: [b] - more than 100 sport modes (with interface customization) [b] - training history [b] - fatigue level calculation (based on exercises ) [b] - call log [b] - contacts (to be added from the application, no automatic synchronization with the phone) [b] - music player with some local files that output the sound on the watch and this sound is really not bad for a watch [b] - sleep measurement [b] - blood oxygen level measurement [b] - stress measurement [b] - breathing exercise [b] - weather [b] - alarm [b] - stopwatch [b] - timer [b] - compass [b] - lamp - torch [b] - find your phone [b][b] The watch therefore offers a lot of features without particularly revolutionizing the world of watches, I was just surprised by the music player which is capable of to read local files where usually this reader is used to control the music application (Spotify, Deezer,...) on your smartphone.[b]
Heart rate[b]I did several sports sessions with the watch at the same time as my Polar H10 belt, then I compared the results which you can see in the screenshots that follow.[b][b][b][b]Indoor cycling:[b][b]Maximum heart rate with the watch: 144[b][b]Maximum heart rate with the belt: 143[b][b]Average heart rate with the watch: 125[b][b]Average heart rate with belt on: 128[b][b]The measurements are therefore very close for the average and the maximum. Intermediate fluctuations are correctly captured by the watch as well, but the accuracy is higher with the belt. If you exercise gradually with very few rapid fluctuations, the watch will be very close to the belt. If, on the other hand, you practice a sport with large variations over a very short period of time, the watch will not be able to capture as much information as the belt. It's often the same with watches, they aren't as precise as a belt for quick changes.[b][b][b][b]Outdoor cycling:[b][b]Maximum heart rate with the watch: 168[b][b]Maximum heart rate with belt: 172[b][b]Average heart rate with the watch: 148[b][b]Average heart rate with belt on: 156[b][b]The measurements deviate a little from the previous exercise because the heart rate fluctuations are more numerous here and as I explained in the previous paragraph, the watch loses a little precision when the heart rate fluctuates a lot. The difference is not very significant but it is more visible on this exercise than the previous one.[b][b][b][b][b]
[b]GPS Performance[b][b]This mount is autonomous, it can pick up a GPS signal without using a smartphone. The initial fix takes about ten seconds before you have a signal level good enough to track your route. I tried the GPS on foot by bike. The precision of a walking route is quite good, on one of the following images we see a route in the forest with all round trips near the water surface with sometimes areas covered with vegetation, sometimes on an open surface. For the bike on the other hand, if I compare the route captured by my smartphone and that by the watch, we can clearly see that in certain places, the watch goes out of the route and even makes loops that do not exist, the level of precision is therefore less good. The measured distance is also not correct because the measured route is 13km.[b][b][b]
[b][b]Sleep measurement[b]Like all watches, moments of inactivity can be taken as moments of sleep, I have not yet found a watch capable of making the difference between a position in an armchair and a position in a bed. The Honor Watch GS3 will therefore consider a moment of rest after 10 p.m. as sleep. I also noticed that it shows a nap duration of a few minutes during the day when I didn't take a nap. The number and duration of awakenings in the middle of the night, on the other hand, seems quite reliable.[b][b][b][b]Oxygen level measurement[b]I don't have a device to measure the oxygen level to compare the data collected by the watch, so I don't know if this data is reliable. However, this is not the first time that I have tested a watch with this type of information and what I have noticed is that the Honor Watch GS3 indicates a significantly lower oxygen level than other watches. I don't usually go below 97% but with the Honor I sometimes go down to 91% which seems unlikely to me.[b][b][b][b]Measurement of the number of steps[b]The calculation of the number of steps is strongly influenced by the movements of the arm on which the watch is placed. If you move your arms a lot while walking, the watch will pick up the number of steps more easily, but if you move your arms very little while walking, the watch will miss a few steps. By walking normally and with a light but deliberately regular arm movement, I obtain a fairly reliable measurement but if, for example, I move in a crowd where the arms are not necessarily going to go back and forth, the precision of the measurement will be less important.[b][b]
The Honor Health app is very similar to other apps I've tested, it's quite intuitive and easy to use. On the home screen we find the summary of all the measurements with the possibility of browsing all the past sports sessions. The second screen allows you to start a sports session from the smartphone, it's the same as for the Zepp Life application. The third screen is a watch configuration screen, you can download new watch faces there (there are a lot of them), you can adjust the frequency of the measurements, change the watch settings and it is here that you can also transfer your music to the watch to make it completely autonomous.
To take full advantage of this watch, you must use the Honor Health application available on the Play Store. All phones that can run this application can be used with this watch.[b]
The watch's operating system is quite classic and that's a good thing because it allows you to quickly find the main features without having to search. The top screen contains shortcuts and settings, the bottom screen displays all your notifications, the left/right screens allow you to browse widgets (heart rate measurement, stress measurement, weather, music player, a summary of the day). The top right button allows you to go back a notch or access the watch menus and the bottom button is customizable, you can for example point it to the sport section of the watch so you don't have to go there through the menu each time.[b][b]
I didn't encounter any major bugs, but I did encounter a few elements that can deteriorate the experience with the watch. The first comes from notifications that don't necessarily arrive in real time, sometimes they do, sometimes they don't and I don't know why. The other element is the voice synthesis used by the watch, it is only in English and it is not discreet at all. I was surprised the first time it showed up and to deactivate it you have to search a bit in the menus of the watch.[b]
Compare Honor Watch GS3 with the others
I assigned a score of 1 to 10 for each test that determines the strengths and weaknesses of a product. I am using 0 for criteria that have not (yet) been tested. A score of 1 to 3 indicates poor performance (and yes, it does), a score of 4 to 6 indicates average performance, a score of 7 to 8 indicates good performance, and a score of 9 and 10 indicates exceptional performance. . The score is calculated based on my measurements and when there are no measurements, it is a subjective opinion based on my experience.
The scores are not static, they change over time because the performance of new products changes and this must be taken into account.
Honor Watch GS3
Score not yet available
Global ranking 1. Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 52.5 / 77 2. Kospet Optimus 2 49.5 / 77 3. Lemfo Lem15 49 / 77 4. Kospet Prime S 49 / 77 5. Amazfit Gts 48 / 77 6. Haylou Rs3 47.5 / 77 7. Xiaomi Mi Watch Lite 47.5 / 77 8. Kospet Magic 3 43 / 70 9. Amazfit X Curved 42.5 / 70 10. Kospet Rock 41.5 / 70 11. Huawei Watch Gt Active 41.5 / 70 12. Mi Band 4 41 / 70 13. Mi Band 5 40.5 / 70 14. Mi Band 3 39.5 / 70 15. Fobase Magic 39.5 / 70 16. Zeblaze Ares 38.5 / 70 17. Mibro Air 38.5 / 70 18. Umidigi Uwatch Gt 38 / 70 19. Mi Band 6 37.5 / 63
Test / Review conclusion
The Honor Watch GS3 is a mid-range watch that is positioned as a credible alternative to Samsung or Amazfit in this price segment. You can't install an app or respond to messages, but that's all it needs to compete with high-end watches. This watch has a very neat design which deviates a little from the plastic models which invaded the entry level and the screen alone allows the watch to stand out because with its superb contrast, the effect of depth in the dial is more realistic. The brightness of the screen is also a positive point because you will be able to read your screen both indoors and outdoors. The screen remains readable in daylight but since the dial reflects a lot of light, you may need to turn your wrist to another angle for better readability. Fortunately, the positive points do not stop at its external appearance because even if this watch does not revolutionize the world of watches, it includes all the features that one is entitled to expect for a watch of this type. .and everything works pretty well! [b][b] The heart rate measurements are reliable provided you make regular and progressive efforts because the watch loses a little precision for more sudden efforts, but the level of reliability remains good for a watch. The measurement of steps is also good in most cases, here it is the movement of the arms that will play a big role. The GPS works quite well even under the foliage of the trees, but care must be taken that the watch is not covered by a thick garment. I noticed some discrepancies while riding the bike and I think the loss of signal was due to my sleeve completely covering the watch when I was on a climb. [b][b] The battery life is about 10 days doing a little sport, letting the watch turn on by moving the wrist, letting the watch do heart rate measurements by permanence. Autonomy is therefore good despite the use of all these features. [b][b] The Honor Health application is quite complete and offers many customization possibilities (dial or settings). This application uses the basics of most applications of this kind (ex: like Zepp Life), I never really had to look very long to find my bearings. The application uses a maximum of information from the watch and its GPS sensor, you can for example obtain information on your cadence, the length of the stride (although it is overestimated) and all kinds of useful information for geeks who want to play sports. [b][b] I had bad memories of the last Honor watch that I tested, the situation is totally different with this model because this watch ticks almost all the boxes of what I expect from a mid-range watch.[b]Strengths[b]Screen quality [b] Automatic brightness [b] Autonomous GPS [b] Battery [b] Reliability of measurements (under constant & regular effort) [b] Ease of usage [b] Finishing [b] Amount of data collected/calculated [b][b][b]Weaknesses[b]Text-to-speech sometimes irritating and only in English (can be disabled) [b] Disconnection messages (can be disabled) [b] Irregularity in the synchronization of messages [b] Sleep sensor too sensitive [b][b][b]
Laurent Willen Instead of watching nonsense on TV or YouTube, I spend my time in the evenings testing products and sharing my passion for technology, travel and photography.
I run this site in my own name and completely independently, no one pays me to do so.
I have more than 20 years of experience in the digital world, I have managed and developed many high traffic websites in companies in Belgium such as Mobistar, Microsoft, Immoweb, BrusselsAirlines, Proximus, Orange,...
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