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Apple Watch Series 3

We laced up our sneakers and tested the Apple Watch Series 3 cellular edition to try its new features around New York.

$199 at Apple
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Published:Caption:Photo:Sarah Tew/CNETDisclosure:We may get a commission from retail offers.
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Design

The Series 3 looks just like an Apple Watch Series 2.

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Series 2 meet Series 3

On the left is the Series 2. On the right is the Series 3. Hard to tell them apart, right?

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GPS or GPS and cellular

There are two types of Series 3 watches: those with GPS and those with GPS and cellular connectivity. Both come in either 38mm or 42mm sizes and in a variety of colors and bands.

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Pricing

The GPS models start at $329, £329 or AU$459. GPS and cellular models start at $399, £399 or AU$559.

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LTE cellular

The red dot on the crown denotes a cellular model.

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Wristbands

The Series 3 uses the same wristbands as the Series 1, 2 and original Apple Watch.

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$10 a month

In the US, all four major carriers have Series 3 data plans starting at $10 a month.

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WatchOS 4

The Series 3 runs WatchOS 4 software out of the box.

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GPS and maps

GPS lets you use maps and track runs without carrying your iPhone with you.

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Phone calls

The biggest plus about a cellular connection is being able to make and receive phone calls and texts.

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Phone calls

The Series 3 cellular watch communicates to the outside world in three steps.

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Phone calls

First, it looks for your iPhone via a Bluetooth connection.

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Phone calls

If it's not nearby, it looks for a previously used Wi-Fi network.

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Phone calls

And if neither of those options are available, the Watch uses 4G LTE.

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Phone calls

And they say no one makes phone calls any more.

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Phone calls

Calls can be dialed directly on the watch with a keypad, or made via tapping existing contacts.

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Siri on the go

The cellular connection also supports Siri queries.

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Siri

Siri now talks back to you.

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Waterproof

The Series 3 is waterproof.

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Waterproof

Water droplets on the optical heart rate sensor.

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Waterproof

It can track water workouts like swimming.

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Waterproof

The Series 3 can be submerged up to 50 meters.

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Waterproof

It can even be used in salt water.

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Waterproof

Obviously, minor splashes like washing your hands are just fine.

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Waterproof

You'll just have a wet wristband.

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Heart rate monitor

The Series 3 uses the same optical heart rate monitor as previous Apple Watch models.

$199 at Apple
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Heart rate monitor

Notice the inscribed "Series 3" at the 12 o'clock position above the optical sensors on the back of the watch.

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Sunlight

Here's the Series 3 screen in direct sunlight.

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Workouts

The Series 3 and WatchOS 4 give you a number of ways to track workouts.

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Workouts

WatchOS 4 adds new graphs for walking and resting heart rates.

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Workouts

Despite improvements to health and fitness tracking, the experience overall is still pretty barebones.

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Workouts

The watch can display a breakout of your heart rate minute by minute for a workout.

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Workouts

A cellular connection lets you stream Apple Music while you workout.

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Workouts

A quick glance can show you calories burned, distance, length of workout and time.

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Workouts

The summary screen displays average heart rate, elevation and duration of your workout.

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Workouts

A popular feature on Apple Watches is being reminded to stop and breathe.

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Workouts

A Nike Plus edition of the Series 3 watch.

$199 at Apple
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Stream Apple Music on the go

If you're an Apple Music subscriber, the Series 3 with cellular might be perfect for you.

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Stream Apple Music on the go

It can stream music and synchronize playlists with iCloud.

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Stream Apple Music on the go

Sadly Spotify, Google Music and Pandora cannot stream. And podcasts still have to be downloaded to the watch.

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Series 2 meet Series 3

Series 2 and 3 watches are nearly identical, except for the red dot on the crown of the cellular Series 3 model.

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Series 2, meet Series 3

On the left is the Series 2 watch in aluminum and on the right is the Series 3 watch in stainless steel.

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Out of the box

The Apple Watch Series 3 comes with a band and a charging cable.

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AirPods

The Series 3 pairs perfectly with a pair of Apple AirPods.

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Apple family

A wireless Apple family.

$206 at Back Market
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Out of the box

The Watch Series 3 was announced alongside the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus.

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Dick Tracy watch

So is this the two-way radio Dick Tracy watch many of us have dreamt of?

$199 at Apple
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Dick Tracy

While you might feel like Dick Tracy using it, the Apple Watch still needs to be paired with your iPhone from time to time. And, no video calls.

$199 at Apple
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Apple Watch Series 3

For a more in-depth look at, check out our full Apple Watch Series 3 review.

$199 at Apple
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