Samsung's latest Gear S3 Frontier and Classic smartwatches can be preordered starting Nov. 6 and will be available for purchase on Nov. 18, several months after the company's late August announcement of the devices.
The Gear S3 smartwatches, which start at $350, include the Frontier watch (pictured) in two versions—a WiFi and Bluetooth model, and a WiFi, Bluetooth and LTE model—as well as the Classic model, which is equipped only with WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity.
The Frontier model has more rugged styling and a bolder appearance, while the Classic version is more traditional and has a sleeker look for professionals.
Both models will be sold through Best Buy, Amazon, Macy's and Samsung.com, as well as participating wireless providers, starting Nov. 18. The LTE version of the Gear S3 Frontier will be available through AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon wireless carriers.
Using the Gear S3 Frontier version with LTE, owners will be able to make cellular calls, read and reply to texts and respond to notifications without having to be accompanied by a smartphone. Both models of the watches also meet IP68 water- and dust-resistance standards and MIL-STD 810G specifications for military-grade durability against extreme temperatures, conditions, impacts and other hazards.
All versions of the Gear S3 feature a 1.3-inch round Super AMOLED full-color, always-on display with 360x360 resolution and a Corning Gorilla Glass display cover, a dual-core 1GHz processor, 768MB of memory, 4GB of internal storage and run on the Tizen-Based Wearable Platform 2.3.1 operating system. The 380mAh battery in the Gear S3 smartwatches can go about three days before needing to be recharged on the included wireless charger.
All Gear S3 models also include built-in speakers and microphones so users can give input to the devices on the fly.
Integrated Samsung Pay mobile payment capabilities are also included with the Gear S3 devices, allowing users to make electronic mobile payments wherever they can tap or swipe a credit or debit card. The smartwatches include built-in Magnetic Secure Transmission (MST) and Near Field Communication (NFC) support to allow Samsung Pay purchases in a wide range of stores.
Samsung Pay on the watches protects credit card information with the same advanced security as Samsung Pay on a Galaxy phone, using tokenization, Knox and PIN protection, according to Samsung.
The smartwatches also include integrated GPS, allowing users to monitor their daily fitness activities and share their location with friends and family members. An included S Health app lets users track their activities and heart rate, as well as set fitness goals and post their results.
All Gear S3 models use a 22mm wide wrist strap and measure 1.8 inches by 1.9 inches by 0.51 inches in size. The Frontier model weighs 2.2 ounces, while the Classic model weighs 2.1 ounces.
The smartwatches can be used with smartphones that feature at least 1.5GB of memory and are running on the Android 4.4 operating system or higher.
The Gear S3 is Samsung's successor to the Gear S2 smartwatches, which went on sale in November 2015. The Gear S2 featured a smaller 1.2-inch circular screen, a 1GHz dual-core processor, 4GB of internal storage, 512MB of memory and a 300mAh battery.