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Mobvoi Ticwatch E3 Review

A great value option for Android users that want to add a little convenience to their wrist
Mobvoi Ticwatch E3
Credit: Mobvoi
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Price:   $200 List | $199.99 at Amazon
Pros:  Supports mobile payments, good display, Android OS friendly
Cons:  Finicky to setup on the charger, just okay at everything
Manufacturer:   Mobvoi
By Benjamin Hickok ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Dec 23, 2021
Our Editors independently research, test, and rate the best products. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Learn more
61
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#7 of 8
  • Ease of Use - 30% 6.0
  • Smart Functions - 20% 6.0
  • Display - 20% 7.0
  • Fitness Impact - 15% 6.0
  • Battery - 15% 5.0

Our Verdict

The Mobvoi TicWatch E3 performance wasn't very exceptional overall. Still, it definitely adds convenience to one's wrist, with a fairly good screen, mobile payment support, a range of features and fitness tracking functions, and a budget-friendly price. While it did not see much improvement in the availability of apps over previous versions, it makes strides in NFC/contactless payment processing and taking phone calls when paired with your phone. It also works well with the Android OS, making it a good choice for Android users with a tighter budget.

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Pros Supports mobile payments, good display, Android OS friendlyLoaded with smart functions, beautiful display, intuitiveLoaded with smart functions, beautiful display, easy to use, great priceGood value, great fitness tracking ability, excellent battery lifeIncredible battery life, great fitness tracking
Cons Finicky to setup on the charger, just okay at everythingPoor battery life, expensiveSubpar battery life, fitness impact tracking could be betterCould be more convenient to use, doesn't have the most smart functionsLack of smart features, could be easier to use
Bottom Line A great value option for Android users that want to add a little convenience to their wristIf you are looking for the absolute best wearable to pair with your iPhone, then look no furtherAn incredible smartwatch for Samsung phone users but a little underwhelming when it comes to battery lifeThe fitness features packed into this wearable make it an excellent choice for the priceIncredible battery life and great fitness tracking abilities make this watch a notable fitness wearable
Rating Categories Mobvoi Ticwatch E3 Apple Watch Series 7 Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 Fitbit Versa 3 Huawei GT 2 Pro
Ease of Use (30%)
6.0
9.0
8.0
6.0
6.0
Smart Functions (20%)
6.0
8.0
7.0
5.0
4.0
Display (20%)
7.0
9.0
9.0
8.0
7.0
Fitness Impact (15%)
6.0
9.0
6.0
8.0
8.0
Battery (15%)
5.0
5.0
5.0
8.0
9.0
Specs Mobvoi Ticwatch E3 Apple Watch Series 7 Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 Fitbit Versa 3 Huawei GT 2 Pro
Water Resistance IP68 5 ATM 5 ATM 5 ATM 5 ATM
NFC (contactless payment) Yes, Google Pay Yes, Apple Pay Yes, Samsung Pay Yes, Fitbit Pay Yes, Google Pay
GPS? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
HR Monitor? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Built-in Microphone? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Built-in Speaker? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Display 1.3 inch AMOLED 41mm or 45mm Retina LTPO OLED 40mm or 44mm AMOLED 1.58 inch OLED 1.39 inch AMOLED
Resolution 360 x 360 420 x 352 (41mm),
484 x 396 (45mm)
396 x 396,
450 x 450
336 x 336 454 x 454
Other Sensors Accelerometer
Gyro
SpO2
Low Latency Off-Body
Accelerometer
Gyro
Barometer
Altimeter
Compass
SpO2
VO2max
Accelerometer
Barometer
Gyro
Geomagnetic
Light
Electrical heart
Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis
Ambient light
Altimeter
3-axis accelerometer
Accelerometer
Gyroscope
Geomagnetic
Air pressure
Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon Wear 4100+ processor Apple S7, Dual-core Dual-core 1.18 GHz Cortex-A55 N/A Kirin A1 + STL4R9
Available Sizes One size 41mm, 45mm 40mm, 42mm, 44mm, 46mm One size One size
Size Tested N/A 41mm 44mm N/A N/A

Our Analysis and Test Results

The TicWatch E3 is a great value, making improvements over the previous model, but its performance still wasn't exceptional compared to other smartwatches in our lineup.

Performance Comparison


Mobvoi Ticwatch E3 smartwatch - a busy watch face with health and fitness tracking metrics.
A busy watch face with health and fitness tracking metrics.
Credit: Laura Casner

Ease of Use


For this metric, we evaluated the process of capturing screenshots, water resistance, charging setup, screen responsiveness, crown or bezel scrolling abilities, and the ease of swapping wristbands. The TicWatch E3 was fine in these areas but never exhibited a performance that was more than ordinary.

We could never capture a screenshot on the E3, and the watch is not waterproof by technical standards. Unlike other more premium watches with a 50-meter water resistance rating, the E3 is only rated to survive depths of about 1.5 meters, per its IP68 rating. In more general terms, it's probably okay to use during a shallow lap pool workout, but you may be taking a risk by wearing it in the shower or the deep end of a pool.

Mobvoi has stayed with the charging setup used on previous models. Unlike circle chargers on other wearables, where you can simply toss your smartwatch onto a charger, the E3 requires users to align two crescent-shaped pins on the watch. While a bit cumbersome, we do like the security of this setup. The watch stays firmly attached to the charger and, as one of the lightest watches we tested, there is no real danger of it getting knocked off if set precariously on the edge of a desk or nightstand.

Sadly, the E3 lacks any crown or bezel scrolling capabilities, but it excels in regards to screen responsiveness. When turning up the wrist, it performed nearly as well as the top-scorers in our review. The same held true for touch screen and scrolling performance. The watch was again very responsive to touch and swiped screens quickly.

Mobvoi Ticwatch E3 smartwatch - physical buttons add ease to touchscreen navigation and interaction...
Physical buttons add ease to touchscreen navigation and interaction on the TicWatch E3.
Credit: Laura Casner

Smart Functions


Here we tested the availability and support for popular apps, as well as the ability to take phone calls and control music. We also explored support for wireless payments and the existence (or not) of stand-alone GPS and cellular capabilities. The E3 did well across these tests, building on the smart functions and features of previous models.

The app selection on the E3 is smaller than what is supported by our top scorers but still on par with most others. It also makes strides over other wearable models because it isn't just capable of accepting calls — it can make them as well. It's possible to dial from the watch and look at call history. The sound quality is also pretty good, making this a great option for those who plan to use their wearable to handle phone calls.

Music control overall is on par with higher-end models, Google Pay is supported, and there's a built-in GPS. A minor drawback to the E3 is a lack of independent cellular capability, which would have made the watch a next-level option for handling calls on the move, without the need for a cellphone nearby. All smart functions and features considered, the E3 is a pretty capable watch that excels at phone calls.

Mobvoi Ticwatch E3 smartwatch - it doesn't just take calls, it dials out too!
It doesn't just take calls, it dials out too!
Credit: Laura Casner

Display


The screen quality on the E3 is mostly great, but with stiff competition from premium manufacturers like Apple and Samsung, we can't say it's anywhere near the best. Reading text is easy to do in both bright and dark lighting situations, but there's no auto-brightness setting. However, there is an always-on setting available through either the app or the watch, which works well.

Mobvoi Ticwatch E3 smartwatch - the bright display is easy to read in all lighting conditions.
The bright display is easy to read in all lighting conditions.
Credit: Laura Casner

Fitness Impact


Here we tested the step counter, heart rate monitor, workout tracking, and stair tracking. In our step counting tests, the E3 performed with great accuracy, on par with the best of the best. Unfortunately, when it came to heart rate monitoring, it didn't continue the trend. While it did fine when the user was at rest, it did a poor job monitoring during exercises, often missing a significant number of heartbeats during jumping and high-intensity activities.

The E3 has a good array of default fitness tracking apps, but if you don't enjoy the TicExercise options or experience, you can always use GoogleFit instead. There are no apparent stair tracking features or abilities that we could find, so if stair tracking is important to your fitness tracking, then you'll want to look at other wearables.

Mobvoi Ticwatch E3 smartwatch - the e3 will allow you to track basic health and fitness data, but...
The E3 will allow you to track basic health and fitness data, but there are better options on the market if this is your priority.
Credit: Laura Casner

Battery


Our last metric tested battery life and recharging performance. We tested the battery life on the E3 under normal use and recorded the time it took to recharge to a 25%, 50%, 75%, and 100% charge level. Overall battery performance left a lot to be desired.

The E3 has an average to below-average battery life of about 21 hours under normal use. The watch's charging performance also proved less than exceptional in our tests. Recharging the device to a 50% charge level took 41 minutes, and a complete charge took 108 minutes. This slow recharge time put the E3 second to last in our tests.

Mobvoi Ticwatch E3 smartwatch - a fairly bare-bones yet functional device to add convenience to...
A fairly bare-bones yet functional device to add convenience to everyday life.
Credit: Laura Casner

Value


Overall, the TicWatch E3 is a good value. It is a bare-bones smartwatch that builds on the feature set of the previous model, has the majority of the features you would want from a wearable, and it's also friendly to most budgets.

Conclusion


If you are currently an Android user looking for a simple smartwatch that can handle phone calls, support NFC payments, and do a decent job of fitness tracking, the Mobvoi TicWatch E3 is a decent choice. It may not be the best smartwatch ever, but it builds on the success of its predecessors, offers many popular smart features, and also retails for less than half the price of the top-tier offerings from Samsung and Apple. If you have reasonable expectations for the E3 and don't expect premium performance at a budget-friendly price, then we think you will be more than satisfied.

Benjamin Hickok
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