UPDATE July 8th, 2021: Please read the review below for full details, but so far this watch continues to impress! Battery life is fantastic so far. With all sensors turned on, and countless alerts from a multitude of apps, calls, and messages, I make it from about 7AM to midnight and the battery is at about 50% when I go to bed. Next morning, the battery is still around 50% when I wake up. I put the watch to charge while I get ready and by the time I leave, within an hour, it’s at nearly 100% again. Fantastic!
And despite wearing it all day and all night, it is super comfortable and very light on the wrist.
I was looking for a possible alternative to my TicWatch Pro, which I’ve had for 2 years. Considering how both my Pro and wife’s C2 have been an excellent smartwatches overall, I was definitely sticking to a TicWatch, but was looking for something lighter than the Pro and just as full-featured.
When compared to my daily-wear TicWatch Pro, the E3 almost feels like “nothing” on my wrist, and that’s a good thing. Don’t get me wrong, I love my Pro, but I don’t always want to feel the heft of the watch on my wrist. My TicWatch Pro weighs about 58 grams, just about twice as much as the E3, at about 32 grams.
The screen is where I was not all too thrilled and the reason for a 4 star review at this stage. The display is clear and very readable. However – the screen brightness doesn’t auto-adjust, so that’s something I need to get used to. The biggest turnoff is the fairly large bezel (about 6mm thick), as they could have hidden at least some of that within the watch body. It’s not as noticeable when the watch is off, but very prominent otherwise. Not even the C2 has a bezel that prominent as most of it was hidden by the case.
The watch band came in all black, and is slim and light, with no pattern to it. The simplicity of the band is a definite plus as it will stay cleaner, without accumulating grime in the nooks and crannies of the watch band, front or back. Band is also very flexible, almost too flexible for my taste, but it’s definitely comfortable on the wrist.
Oxygen monitoring and heartrate monitoring work as expected on demand, but I really want to see how it works on automatic monitoring 24/7, and how that affects the battery life. Also, I am very interested in sleep monitoring functions, as well as my blood oxygen and heartrate during sleep. My TicWatch Pro rarely had enough battery to last more than about 18 hours of normal use (mostly notifications and normal watch functions), so by bedtime it was at 20% or less and would definitely not last through the night or be useful in the morning. The E3 is supposed to have a much more efficient battery, so we will see as the days go by whether it can last to be useful for sleep monitoring and into the next day.
As a first night test, I went to sleep with the watch at about 60% charge and in the morning it was indicating about 50%, despite all sensors being on “always”.
So far, sleep monitoring function worked well for one night’s sleep, providing sleep details such as time spend in deep sleep, light sleep, awake, REM sleep stats, pulse, oxygen, as well as overall sleep efficiency. Both the watch and the phone app provide detailed info.
As for included apps, I don’t know if the TicHearing is a new option, but it’s definitely one of those “nice to have” apps if you’re ever curious as to how loud your environment is. Goes along nicely with the other Tic-suite apps like TicZen and TicBreathe when it comes to relaxation and self-care.
I tested the microphone briefly, using the voice memo function. It worked extremely well when it comes to voice clarity, while being outside in a noisy backyard with background noise. Recoding, heard on my phone via the Mobvoi app was very clear and “full sounding,” not tinny as you might expect.
As for the watch performance, from what I’ve tested so far, it’s very snappy when switching screens and launching apps, and absolutely smooth scrolling and swiping. It definitely shows this watch is running on a much faster Snapdragon Wear 4100, with double the memory (1GB). There’s also plenty of storage at 8GB if you want to load it with music and leave your phone behind when working out.
As for water proofing, this watch has an IP68 rating, but also says “Pool Swimming”, which is very vague. I wish it had more detailed info than just “pool swimming”, like the TicWatch E2 which can handle up to 5ATM. However, since it claims to fully support swimming, and also covers it as part of the fitness app functions, I hope it certainly means you can use it while doing laps or casual swimming in a pool without concern.
The watch is new, so when it comes to accessories like glass screen protectors or bumper guards (cases), options are very limited, but I am sure that will change soon. It uses a standard 20mm strap, so lots of options available there.
Overall, very impressed with my initial experience with the watch and I am looking forward to thoroughly enjoying this watch when swimming, as well as the extended battery life, to include sleep monitoring and 24/7 health monitoring options.