Montblanc smartwatches will be joining Samsung and Google on Wear OS 3. The new Montblanc Summit 3 is slated to run the unified wearable operating system when it's released on July 15.
According to The Verge, the Montblanc Summit 3 smartwatch powered by the Snapdragon Wear 4100+ chipset will be available to global customers from Montblanc's website with a price tag of €1,250. For U.S. customers, that works out to about $1,314.
Unlike most of the best smartwatches, this device clearly is not targeted to every consumer, but the cost should not come as a surprise for those familiar with the brand. The luxury watchmaker is no stranger to eye-popping price tags on its timepieces. When Tom’s Guide reviewed the Montblanc Summit 2+, the smartwatch's obvious setback was its $1,100 price (it is now $1,170).
For those that want Montblanc's latest and greatest connected timepiece, the Summit 3 could have plenty to offer. It certainly seems to follow Montblanc’s high standards for quality, consisting of a light-weight titanium watch case, paired with handmade calf leather and rubber straps.
It is also currently the first available Wear OS 3 smartwatch not manufactured by Samsung. While other eligible Wear OS 3 smartwatches expected to receive the full update by the end of this year, Montblanc looks to be the only Samsung alternative for now.
What is Wear OS 3?
Wear OS 3, or simply "Wear," is the latest Android operating system for wearables. Until last year, Samsung and Google had competing operating systems with Tizen and Wear OS, respectively. Samsung merged merged Tizen with Wear OS ahead of the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 series launch.
Samsung is expected to stick with Wear OS 3 for upcoming wearables, while Google will debut its first in-house smartwatch, the Google Pixel Watch. The unified platform should better equip Android smartwatch manufacturers to compete against Apple’s upcoming Apple Watch 8 with watchOS 9. A major benefit of Wear OS is deep integration with Google services, much like the watchOS supports the major Apple programs.
However, some watches will not run on the new software. Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 and earlier will still run on Samsung Tizen. So will any smartwatch running on a Snapdragon Wear 3100 chip or older. This includes the Fossil Gen 5 LTE, Xiaomi Mi Watch and the Suunto 7, which is one of the best running watches we have seen so far. These may be available at a discounted price, but if you buy one just know it will never run on the latest Wear software.
Wear OS 3 smartwatches
Right now there is only one smartwatch that runs on Wear OS 3: the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 (though that also includes the Galaxy Watch 4 Classic.) If you want an Android smartwatch, and Montblanc price frightens you, the current-gen Galaxy Watch is the best option. The good news is that the best Samsung watch is widely available, and the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 vs. Galaxy Watch 3 presents worthwhile upgrades.
There are new Wear OS 3 smartwatches still to come this year. As mentioned, the Google Pixel Watch will run on Wear OS 3 when it launches this fall, and has a good chance at becoming the best smartwatch for Android. It'll most closely challenge Samsung Galaxy Watch 5, which is rumored to debut in August of this year.