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Qualcomm announces Snapdragon Wear 3100

After two-plus years, Qualcomm has finally announced an update to their ageing Snapdragon Wear 2100. Qualcomm has been working closely with Google and the Wear OS team to create a chipset that is designed for the OS.

With the new Snapdragon Wear 3100, Wear OS is now able to support three different modes: an enhanced ambient mode, a dedicated sports experience, and a traditional watch mode.

Enhanced Ambient Mode

Instead of a low res black and white display in ambient mode, the new enhanced mode will now support a smooth second hand, live complications, better brightness, and up to 16 colors. This will allow the watch to look like a real watch even when in ambient mode while not sacrificing battery life. With the new processor, we can expect 4 to 12 hours of additional battery compared to the previous generation.

Dedicated Sports Experiences

The dedicated sports experience will allow swimmer and runners to be active for a long duration while having sensors like GPU and heart rate monitor turned on. Qualcomm has said that their chip is designed to deliver up to 15 hours of continuous use in this mode.

Traditional Watch Mode

This mode allows the user to use the basic watch functions for up to a week without having to charge the device. This will be great for people who are travelling and might not have access to a charger.

We won’t even need to wait that long to see these watches hit the market.
Fossil Group, Louis Vuitton, and Montblanc all have announced that they will have some Wear OS watches with the Snapdragon 3100 by the 2018  holiday season. Montblanc even went a step further to officially announce their smartwatch, the Summit 2. We can expect it to be available in October for around $1000 (ouch).

Montblanc Summit 2
image from Trusted Review

If these new features sound exciting to you (they certainly are for me) I would say the Fossil Group is probably your best bet for a smartwatch that will be priced more reasonably. Hopefully, we will hear from them soon.