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Montblanc Summit 3 overview: luxurious and compromises

Montblanc Summit 3

MSRP $1,290.00

“The Montblanc Summit 3 is a beautiful, highly desirable luxury smartwatch with the latest WearOS 3 software, but it’s let down by short battery life and basic fitness tracking.”


  • Beautiful design
  • Luxury supplies
  • Latest Wear OS 3 software program
  • Two straps included


  • 1-day battery life on the most
  • No Google Assistant
  • Limited Montblanc health app

The extra I put on the Montblanc Summit 3, the extra I contemplate it one of the vital essential smartwatch releases of latest instances. Big assertion, proper? Absolutely. So let’s look at why.

It’s the primary non-Samsung smartwatch with Google’s Wear OS 3, it really works with Android and iOS (in contrast to Samsung’s newest), it comes from a longtime luxurious Swiss model, and whereas it’s costly, it’s not obscenely so. However, it being essential is one factor, however being smartwatch is one other. Can it succeed at each?

Montblanc Summit 3 design

There’s an opportunity that, like me, you affiliate Montblanc with stunning writing devices and luxurious journey equipment greater than watches. When you do take into consideration Montblanc watches, its conventional, fairly classically styled journey watches and costume watches that come to thoughts. Things are altering, although, with the corporate launching some intriguing new fashions — the attractive Iced Sea divers watch and 1858 GMT, for instance — which appear to take it in a brand new, extra trendy course.

The Montblanc Summit 3 showing a watch face and its blue strap.
Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

The Summit 3 matches in completely. It’s an exquisite mixture of present tech and chic watch design, however as a result of it doesn’t take an excessive amount of inspiration from Montblanc’s heritage fashions, it appears to be like trendy and trendy. It’s produced from titanium with a stainless-steel bezel, crown, buttons, and case again, plus it has an anti-scratch sapphire crystal over the display. In the field are a rubber strap and a leather-based strap, permitting you to freely select a sportier or extra informal look.

Speaking of which, it appears to be like implausible. The satin end titanium oozes class, the polished metal sections glint within the solar, and the flat sapphire crystal is fantastically clear. While it shares comparable supplies to the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro, the 2 couldn’t be additional aside within the remedy of these supplies or the design round them. This is a correct luxurious smartwatch, and it feels very particular to put on it. It’s even gentle and comfy sufficient to be worn in a single day, and the rubber strap doesn’t get sweaty or uncomfortable.

The Montblanc Summit 3 on a mans wrist.
Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

The massive knurled crown — a Montblanc trademark — makes utilizing it simple and comfy, plus I like the best way it has a button inside it, relatively than all the crown being a button. The pushers that flank it look nice, however are fairly clicky when pressed in comparison with the crown’s button. The 42mm case measurement is modest as is the 14mm thickness, and I feel it matches my 6.5-inch wrist very well. It’s fairly a masculine design, although, and that added to the dimensions of the case, means these with smaller wrists could discover it overpowering.

Its pure rival is the 42mm Tag Heuer Connected Calibre E4, which solely is available in stainless-steel however has a ceramic bezel. It’s sportier and extra trendy than the Summit 3, as you’d anticipate from the model, whereas the Montblanc smartwatch is extra elegant and restrained. The display is identically sized and appears equally as vivid and colourful too. My personal watch preferences meant I initially leaned extra in direction of the Tag Heuer, however the Summit 3 has turned all that round.

Man using the Montblanc Summit 3's crown.
Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

I don’t put on watches styled just like the Summit 3 fairly often, they usually have to be fairly particular to tempt me away from divers watches and chronographs, however the Summit 3 has actually gained me over. It jogs my memory of sporting a Longines Record for a weekend, regardless of it being completely completely different from my normal decisions, and completely loving the best way it regarded. The mix of Montblanc heritage, trendy design decisions, and high-class supplies makes the Summit 3 very fascinating.

Montblanc Summit 3 Wear OS 3 software program

The Montblanc Summit 3’s design will make watch followers cease and stare, nevertheless it’s the software program that makes tech followers scorching beneath the collar. Samsung has completely (formally or in any other case) loaded Google’s Wear OS 3 software program onto its Galaxy Watch fashions, making Montblanc the primary to make use of it with out Samsung’s consumer interface excessive.

Main menu on the Montblanc Summit 3.
Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

Wear OS 3 is all-new and sadly fairly acquainted on the similar time. The preliminary onboarding course of is new as you don’t use the Wear OS app to attach (in actual fact, iOS makes you uninstall the Wear OS app totally earlier than it’ll pair), and as an alternative, you depend on Montblanc’s Summit app. This is an enormous change for producers with Wear OS 3, and it permits them to fully management all the watch expertise from the app to the software program on the watch, that means it could actually all be branded appropriately. For instance, all of the watch faces accessible within the app are Montblanc’s personal.

Controlling the watch is principally the identical as ever, with swipes to navigate menus, faucets to pick out choices, and the rotating crown to make zipping via Wear OS sooner. The rotating crown works all through the system and is way extra deeply built-in than comparable fashions utilizing Wear OS 2. The high pusher reveals lately used apps, whereas the underside pusher launches Montblanc’s Fitness app, however this may be modified to an alternate within the Settings.

You swipe via a number of Tiles to see related info, together with your calendar, the climate, steps, coronary heart fee, blood oxygen, and sleep information. The structure and choices might be personalized within the app. Other apps might be downloaded from the Google Play Store, you’ll be able to management music in your telephone from the watch, notifications arrive in an inventory accessed with a swipe, and Quick Settings seem once you swipe down on the principle display.

Design highlights for me embody the delicate, gray, oblong-shaped buttons within the app menu and notifications, plus the simply pressed Quick Settings controls, the clear fonts, and the general uniformity of design. The working system’s velocity and fluidity don’t disappoint both. Wear OS 3’s design is enticing, clear, and trendy, plus giving management over the app and pairing course of to the producer makes all of it really feel extra cohesive too. It’s additionally sooner to set the smartwatch up, one other enchancment over Wear OS 2.

However, the software program is proscribed and generally problematic on the Summit 3. I had a number of issues coming into my Google account and it accepting a Wi-Fi community. It’s not with out odd bugs, the worst being a number of random shutdowns. I’ll come again to the iOS compatibility shortly, nevertheless it’s not good. There are some options lacking, particularly within the accessibility menu. There’s no possibility to regulate the vibration depth, no length settings for button presses, and since there’s no speaker on the watch, there’s no voice management — and Google Assistant isn’t accessible both. The solely accessibility mode is magnification.

Bugs have to be squashed, the accessibility is disappointing, the dearth of a speaker and Google Assistant mystifying, and it may be a bit ponderous to make use of when utilizing apps just like the Play Store. Wear OS 3 is an enchancment over Wear OS 2, nevertheless it’s not clear whether or not the shortcomings seen listed below are a part of its unfinished nature or selections made by Montblanc.

Montblanc Summit 3 health and exercise monitoring

There’s a coronary heart fee sensor on the again of the Summit 3, sensors for blood oxygen, plus it’ll work out your stress ranges and observe all of your exercises via devoted apps on the watch. Why is on the watch italicized? Because you’ll be able to solely accomplish that on the watch, as none of Montblanc’s personal health options sync with the Montblanc app in your telephone, so all information is saved and considered on the little display. No graphs, no simply sorted historic information, nothing.

Montblanc’s health app doesn’t sync with different platforms both, so in the event you use Strava, then you definately’ll should obtain and use it individually. It doesn’t hyperlink to Google Fit or Apple Health, so there’s no approach to hold observe of all of your actions and well being information in a single place in your telephone. This means including an extra sequence of apps duplicating what’s already accessible from Montblanc.

It’s a substantial draw back, successfully minimizing the usefulness of the Summit 3’s personal properly designed well being monitoring options, and forcing you to obtain additional extra apps. It’s not clear whether or not this can be a consequence of Wear OS 3 and the arrival of branded companion apps or if it’s a Montblanc resolution. It’s one thing that could be addressed in a future software program replace, however in the mean time on the mannequin we reviewed, that is the scenario.

The Montblanc Summit 3's app.

What about accuracy? It estimated the identical calorie burn because the Apple Watch Series 7 however differed with the next common coronary heart fee. During exercises, I’d see it recording vastly larger (and unrealistic) numbers than the Apple Watch, so that is to be anticipated. Oddly, once you select the “Other” exercise mode it nonetheless data distances and velocity, regardless of me not leaving my lounge when exercising and the little icon exhibiting an individual lifting weights.

All this implies the Summit 3 isn’t a smartwatch for health lovers. It has not one of the means of the Galaxy Watch 5 Pro, is lacking the simplicity and accuracy of the Apple Watch Series 7, and lacks devoted apps and modes to attraction to golfers just like the Tag Heuer Connected Calibre E4.

Montblanc Summit 3 with iOS

The Montblanc Summit 3 works with Android and iOS, however I can’t suggest it to anybody with an iPhone. This is often true anyway as a result of the Apple Watch higher integrates with iOS for extra performance, however technically most non-Samsung smartwatches can be utilized with iOS in the event you actually wished to and don’t thoughts lacking out on issues like Google Maps. I’ve had the Summit 3 related to a number of Android telephones and an iPhone 13 Pro, on which the expertise was a horror present.

Horrific? Oh sure. Downloading the 20MB-ish Google Fit app when related to iOS took about 20 minutes, then one other 10 minutes to arrange as a result of it was so gradual. Once I’d accomplished this, I observed the battery had taken a few 50% hit throughout its Herculean effort to present me a health app that syncs throughout a number of platforms. Not solely that, nevertheless it was the second time I attempted to put in the app, as the primary time it refused to obtain in any respect.

Living with it, the Summit 3’s software program stutters and pauses when related to iOS in a approach that’s virtually totally absent when related to Android. It’s no marvel Samsung determined to maintain the Galaxy Watch 4 and Galaxy Watch 5 away from iOS, as in the event that they operated something just like the Summit 3, individuals would have been sending them again instantly. Even after a reset and making an attempt once more with iOS, I had the identical expertise.

Montblanc Summit 3 efficiency and battery

The Summit 3 has Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 4100+ processor and 1GB of RAM, and it’s a modest performer when related to an Android telephone. Wi-Fi vary is kind of quick, although, definitely shorter than your telephone, and there’s no means to take calls on the smartwatch. The display is a magnificence with its pin-sharp 416 x 416 decision, and the 1.28-inch measurement is good.

Battery life isn’t so good. In the couple of weeks I’ve been testing the smartwatch, it has not lasted greater than a full day, and even with minimal use — no GPS or exercise monitoring, for instance — it’s right down to lower than 30% most evenings. Tracking exercises give it a bashing, too, with a 30-minute exercise taking (on the minimal) 12% of the battery every time.

Charging the Montblanc Summit 3’s battery every day is crucial. It takes rather less than an hour utilizing the intelligent wi-fi charger, which can be utilized as a plinth or an upright charger to be used on a nightstand.

Montblanc Summit 3 value and availability

There are three fashions of the Montblanc Summit 3 accessible, and all value $1,290 or 1,105 British kilos. The distinction is within the titanium end, with the usual titanium model seen in our images, a black titanium model, and a bicolor mannequin with a gray titanium case with a black stainless-steel bezel.

While not low cost within the slightest, the Summit 3 is the most cost effective approach to get a Montblanc watch in your wrist (outdoors of the older Summit Lite), and it’s additionally rather a lot lower than its high rival within the luxurious smartwatch world, the Tag Heuer Connected Calibre E4.

The Montblanc Summit 3 has luxurious, desirability, and high-tech attraction

I really like the Montblanc Summit 3’s implausible design, and I just like the course Wear OS is taking, however the remedy of exercise monitoring is a misstep, the lacking options baffling, and the quick battery life disappointing. It all works acceptably sufficient, the design is nice, and all of the instruments are there, however it could actually’t fairly stay as much as the promise.

If we solely regarded on the design, construct high quality, and beautiful presentation, the Summit 3 can be the most effective, most fascinating smartwatches you will get to make use of with an Android telephone. However, the technical aspect, regardless of having the newest software program and an honest (if not that new) processor, simply isn’t pretty much as good correctly.

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