Fossil Sport Review: A New Qualcomm Technology.
, by Anusiya M, 4 min reading time
The new chip from Qualcomm is entering new Google Wear OS smartwatches as a part of Googles efforts to revamp its Wear OS smartwatches.The rumours that Google paid around 290 crore INR for Fossil technology gives us hope that something new and big is on the way. The Sport is the most affordable smartwatch from Fossil with Wear OS and new Qualcomm technology.With the functionalities like heart rate monitor and GPS, this smartwatch is all set for activity tracking as well and is a serious player opposite its rivals -- smartwatches and fitness trackers from Apple, Fitbit and Samsung.However, all these features can be seen in all smartwatches that come under the mothership of Fossil. You can read the review of Fossil Sport here to know what is packed in this 18,000 INR watch.
The Fossil Sport comes in two sizes - 41mm case and 43mm case. It is rightly sized not to look too large or too small on the wrist. There is a range of options in colour. You can mix and match the case to band colours like red, blue, black, gold, neon yellow and grey.All these models have a two-tone design with aluminium at the upper portion and nylon underneath. This mix makes the Sport lightweight and sweat/water-proof.It is a comfortable wear, especially during workouts and weighs only 36-40g. Out of the three side-buttons, the middle crown can be rotated to scroll through the menus and notifications.
The Wear OS menu can be accessed by pressing the centre button.A long press on the same button brings Google Assistant to you. The other two buttons are customisable and can be used for easy access of and shortcuts to various apps that you use frequently.There are many pre-installed watch faces and more of them can be downloaded from Google PlayStore. Android users can get this done through the app on the smartphone paired to your smartphone.However, the iOS users will be able to install new watch faces only through the PlayStore on the watch. A few watch faces are customisable and allow you to add widgets for the apps you choose.
Wear OS and features
Google Wear OS has improved a lot after its last upgrade. It is not the same as what is seen on Apple or Samsung. It works well most of the time but can turn troublesome at times too. The Sport comes with the newest features of Wear OS packed into it.The Fossil has not layered its own proprietary activity of fitness apps on the Wear OS. So, what you have is only Google Fit or third-party apps like Strava. And unfortunately for the iOS users, even Google Fit is not available.Spotify and Noonlight (an app for contacting emergency services) come as pre-installed apps on Fossil Sport, with the Wear OS.
The built-in microphone is another attraction on the Sport. It brings you the assistance of Google Assistant.The new chip, Qualcomm Snapdragon Wear 3100 prioritises battery life longevity over the smoother functioning of smartwatch features. As a result, the apps on Sports can be seen lagging, crashing or unresponsive. The Wear OS is not to be blamed for this experience.It happens because of the demand from the smartwatch companies for longer battery life and Qualcomms lack of interest in prioritising smartwatch features over battery efficiency.
Health and fitness
Like all other Fossil watches, the Sport also comes with GPS and heart rate monitor. So, there are no outstanding features to be discussed on the health and fitness front. It is not a great fitness watch. It gives a similar experience as seen on the 4th generation Fossil smartwatches. GPS works just fine.The heart rate sensor showed higher reading compared to what is seen on the Polar H10 chest strap or Apple Watch Series 4. But tracking the heart rate regularly will give more accurate results over time.Nevertheless, it is not as great a fitness tracker as Garmin or Apple Watch.
The fitness tracking from Sport is the worst for iOS users. The workout data can be viewed only on the watch and there is no backup of any information on the phone. There is a web browser portal that will again give only basic information on the workout reading.It leaves you with the only one option, a third-party app which can be installed from the Play Store on the watch. Setting up the whole thing on the watch is a pretty difficult task. In comparison, the Android users have less trouble than the iOS ones.
Battery lifeThe very chip -- Qualcomm Snapdragon 3100 -- that is expected to enhance the battery longevity is not up to expectations. It struggles to manage even two days.And with the use of more features and functionalities that eat up battery, it only lasts for a day. The new update for Wear OS. H, which is coming soon, might come with a battery save mode to turn the watch into sleep mode if it is inactive for 30 minutes. This update is already seen on a few Fossil smartwatches like Explorist HR and others.The new H update is expected to reach Fossil Sport early this year. Even though the Wear OS cannot be reborn totally, the little tweaks can improve its watches step by step.
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