First Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 update enables a major new health tracking feature

First Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 update enables a major new health tracking feature
Well, that was fast. Samsung barely unveiled its hot new Android and iOS-compatible smartwatch a couple of days ago, putting it up for sale almost immediately, and a very important software update is already rolling out to the Galaxy Watch 3 in select regions around the world.

This just so happens to activate one of the biggest new features advertised at the company's virtual Unpacked event on Wednesday, which Samsung vaguely promised to do by the end of Q3 initially. Well, the quarter is far from over, and at least if you don't live in Algeria, Angola, Canada, France, Iran, Japan, Libya, South Africa, or Thailand, you should be able to use the Galaxy Watch 3's blood oxygen sensor really soon.

By measuring your blood oxygen saturation levels over time, the Tizen-powered intelligent timepiece can monitor how effectively your respiratory system transfers oxygen to the blood stream, detecting a condition known as hypoxemia when said saturation levels fall below 90 percent. While undoubtedly handy, the technology is not intended for professional medical use and shouldn't be trusted to replace a doctor's diagnosis or dictate a treatment method.

In other words, the blood oxygen measurements the Galaxy Watch 3 will be able to perform are purely informative, helping you understand your overall health status better alongside a group of other tools. Said group includes a VO2 max reader that aims to improve your endurance by checking the maximum amount of oxygen you utilize during your workouts, which is another feature that was supposed to be activated in Q3 and should already be functional after you install the first-ever Galaxy Watch 3 software update.

Tipping the scales at 80MB, this also adds "advanced running analysis" and "sleep scores" to the impressive fitness and health tracking equation of Samsung's newest Apple Watch challenger. Speaking of the market leader, Cupertino's Series 6 timepiece is expected to come with a blood oxygen sensor of its own, as well as a blood pressure monitoring functionality that remains disabled on the Galaxy Watch 3 for now.

The Galaxy Watch 3 can't make use of its Apple Watch-rivaling ECG technology outside Korea either, although with FDA clearance finally out of the way, that's likely to change in the US in the relatively near future.

Related phones

Galaxy Watch 3 (41mm)
  • Display 1.2 inches
    360 x 360 pixels
  • Hardware Samsung Exynos 9110
    1GB RAM
  • Storage 8GB, not expandable
  • Battery 247 mAh
  • OS Tizen
Galaxy Watch 3 (45mm)
  • Display 1.4 inches
    360 x 360 pixels
  • Hardware Samsung Exynos 9110
    1GB RAM
  • Storage 8GB, not expandable
  • Battery 340 mAh
  • OS Tizen

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