First-generation Samsung Galaxy Watch
It was only yesterday that we rounded up and recapped the key specs and features
of the oft-rumored Samsung Galaxy Watch 3
, and lo and behold, the first real-world pictures
of the impending Tizen-powered smartwatch in both 41 and 45mm sizes have already come to light.
Much like that revealing sketch illustrating the back
of the SM-R845 model a few weeks ago, these full frontal photographs are out courtesy of a regulatory agency rather than the usual well-connected insiders or prolific Twitter leakers. This time around, we're looking at Korean certification documents for SM-R850 and SM-R840 variants, both of which are expected to support Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity but not 4G LTE... or 5G, of course.
If history is any indication (and it almost always is when it comes to these types of things), the SM-R850 label will be attached to the smaller Galaxy Watch
3, while the larger version is widely rumored to carry the SM-R840 designation. Unsurprisingly, the two smartwatches seem to look pretty much identical on the outside while also sharing quite a lot in common with the 2018-released Galaxy Watch
Physical rotating bezel confirmed
The handy UI navigation feature, remember, was a thing on multiple Samsung-made wearable devices up to the original Galaxy Watch, disappearing without a trace when the budget-friendly Galaxy Watch Active entered the scene and making way for a software-based alternative on the Watch Active 2. That... wasn't quite the same thing, but fortunately, it appears that Samsung
is ready to give its hardcore fans what they want again.
Even better, it looks like the Galaxy Watch 3 bezel will be drastically reduced in thickness compared to the same hardware component on 2018's Galaxy Watch, which is a detail substantiated by SamMobile's leaked overall dimensions yesterday.
Yes, the Galaxy Watch 3 will be significantly less chunky than the Galaxy Watch, although still not quite as compact and thin as the Watch Active 2
. Korea's National Radio Research Agency also reveals the presence of two buttons on the right side of the Galaxy Watch 3, which may sound like a familiar setup but interestingly, both their shape and size is changed from what the Galaxy Watch and Watch Active 2 have going on.
The pricing structure remains the biggest question mark
In addition to everything these freshly published regulatory docs substantiate, we know Samsung plans to commercially release the Galaxy Watch 3 in early August in stainless steel and titanium flavors with essentially the same built-in sensors and health monitoring features as last year's Galaxy Watch Active 2.
We're talking standalone GPS functionality, wrist-based heart rate tracking, in-depth sleep supervision, and yes, both ECG and blood pressure monitoring
as well, although we obviously can't be certain the company will obtain the necessary FDA approvals to actually enable the latter two features at launch in the US.
The Galaxy Watch was undoubtedly beautiful but also decidedly bulky
Other stuff pretty much etched in stone already includes IP68 water resistance, 8 gigs of internal storage space, at least one gig of RAM, Gorilla Glass DX protection for undoubtedly sharp 1.2 and 1.4-inch Super AMOLED displays, optional LTE support, and 247 and 340mAh battery capacity for 41 and 45mm variants respectively mirroring the cell capacity on the 40 and 44mm Galaxy Watch Active 2.
That leaves us with one important unanswered question, and while we don't necessarily expect anything to change on the pricing front in the next few weeks, we can probably safely assume the Galaxy Watch 3 will be slightly costlier than the Watch Active 2. Of course, what Samsung needs more than anything is for its latest Android and iOS-compatible smartwatch to undercut the Apple Watch Series 6
, which seems doable.
After all, the Apple Watch Series 5
starts at $399, while the most affordable Galaxy Watch Active 2 variant normally costs $280.