TomTom Spark 3 Review Facts
We look for the best when we go looking for items to show you, and there are so many choices for fitness trackers and running watches that finding what is the best can be difficult. A big thing we have to consider is that the options can vary between one and the next. That is why we cover as many variations as we can. This one is the TomTom Spark 3, and many have found that following the TomTom brand has resulted in getting the products that are just what they needed without having to go overboard or missing out on anything they might need or want. After all, it isn’t either a fitness tracker or a running watch, it is both! You can find many of the options that one or the other offers in one package, and we have found that most customers of this particular line seem to feel it is worth the money. When we do research, satisfaction from those who either owned or got to check out the item is one of the key factors to deciding if it is something to bring to your attention. For those of us who are fitness guru’s, and even those of us who have friends looking to get something like this for health issues, diving into which one to recommend becomes an all-important question. So, without taking too much time just warming you up for this run, we will plunge right in and look for what this particular brand has to offer on its Spark line!
Like earlier versions in this line, the Spark 3 offers GPs tracking so you can see where you are and where you are headed on their maps, and it also has a new feature with this. It can show you alternate or new routes you can take if you want to get a little more on the explorative side of things. It also has multiple sports tracking like the old one, which means it can give you a readout for different types of workouts,
which includes swimming. It can also track your heart rate along with your movements so that you can maintain the right workout level and not have to do all the guesswork. With the 24/7 activity tracker, you can also keep track of your day to day activity even when you aren’t working out to see if you want to change anything up.
The most basic look to this watch is in its materials and the overall look at its base. Like those before it, the TomTom Spark 3 fits into a strap rather than being permanently attached to it. While you can still use the old straps, though, there are newer ones available, and from what we found, the newer ones are the better choice. Unlike the old straps, these ones fit more snuggle and have added sweat-wick protection for your arm. The main piece also doesn’t seem to have the same issue with ‘popping out at will’ that the older straps seemed to have. There are also some new colors to choose from, but not enough to really draw attention to it here. Besides that, the watch/fitness tracker is actually able to go into the pool with you, so you can do tracking with your swimming
routines as well, which is a definite plus if swimming is your go-to for fitness. The materials are durable for the most part as well, which is an important plus when buying anything you plan to wear on you everywhere.
There are a lot of advanced app features on this one, and we will go more into depth with certain features further down. For starters, it can track you with GPS, and has a new mapping system to show you new routes, and even help you to keep track of paths you haven’t explored, or ones that you enjoy exploring so that you can check them out again later. It also has a compass,
so you can keep track of where you are going in relation to where you are and where you have been, which makes it nicer in that you can more easily find your way and not get lost if you go off the traditional paths. Of course, if running isn’t your thing, it also has multiple sports fitness tracking and you can select in its menu which you are planning to do so it can keep track. Along with the heart rate monitor and the 24/7 activity tracker, this watch already seems to have it all- but what about phone free music? The TomTom Spark 3 also has that! So if you want to be able to listen to tunes, work out and not have to use your phone to do it all, this might just be your newest companion to work with!
This is the one downfall we could find. A few people have found that while it seems to do well with connecting to the headsets, it can’t seem to stay synced with their phone. That means if you intend to use it with your phone you may become frustrated with having to resync depending on what type of phone and your range. This doesn’t appear to always be the case, but since we did see enough complaints on it, we definitely wanted to touch base. Since everything it can do can technically be done straight from the device itself, including music
, this may be a near non-issue for most, but for those out there who just need it to always connect, you may want to check on the compatibility just to be safe.
Everything this little watch does is done through apps and recorded by them to your personal app. What this means is if we listed something- it is found on the app which runs on both the watch and your phone. You can check your stats on either device, though your phone is likely going to be easier to read. The only issue many have with the app system is that it seems to be made up of a complicated pattern on the watch itself. The menus can take a while to memorize and the app is set up similarly. Most of those who have the watch say that if all you need are the running parts, it is not overly difficult to navigate and find those, rather it is mostly for the other sports features that the navigation can be tricky. That being said, if all you need is the GPS,
compass, heart tracker and music, then you’ll be set up easy and fast. Of course, as with any fitness tracker who has their apps built in and all you have to go on is the watch face, you can expect some traversing to find everything- after all the screen isn’t exactly large, so fitting it all in one space is a bit on the impossible side unless microscopic is your vision type. So, in the end, we are ambivalent on this ‘issue’ since it is really more of a personal dislike for scrolling than it is actually a real problem. (Put on your glasses and just look! If it is there, you will be able to find it and after a week or two you will likely have it all memorized anyway!)
The new bands for the Spark 3 are lined with softer materials, and with the sweat-wicking in place, you aren’t likely to get chafed. This ups the ante on comfort, we think. With a snugger fit, it also means you won’t be caused discomfort with a watch face that won’t stay on top and centered either. Of course, the biggest change most liked was the fact that the main piece stays in place much better, so you aren’t left hoping it doesn’t pop out where you might miss it and end up only discovering later that it is gone. Comfort comes in all forms, but we think the biggest is in knowing that what you pay for will still be right where it is supposed to be when you get home. (Of course, not having the band sticking and rubbing into your arm is important too!)
This is an area that has not had much change for this particular brand and line of fitness trackers. While the design of the band has changed, it hasn’t added many more options to the color line up. The device itself is a little improved in size, but not enough to not be considered a little on the bulky side. That being said, the fact that this is a watch with its own built-in apps and music player, so you really can’t expect it to be smaller without losing some of its key functions. One of the complaints already has been the menu navigation, so if you are upset about that, a smaller face is only going to make it worse if you think about it. Overall, this isn’t meant to be a fashion statement anyway, more of a ‘fitness statement’. When thinking that way, it really does have a good style for doing its job, enough so that it is already being considered it has already gone from ‘little known’ to a huge competitor in the market.
The materials used to make this watch a durable one. The hard-plastic screen and the overall size of it add to the ability to take bumps and accidental drops or falls, so you have that to consider. The straps can be used from the previous versions to the newer ones, which speaks impressively for their durability as well, and with the fact you can even go swimming, you don’t even have to worry about getting it wet. With any electronic device, worn or carried, this is a major selling point. After all. If you can do just about anything with it on you, it is quality merchandise that often speaks for itself.
They put a good size for the face, considering its touch features and the need to be able to easily read and navigate around the menu system. Other watches of similar design tried the smaller faces, and while they technically work, the touch sensitivity can be a little off and the menus harder to really read and navigate. With built-in music capability, you also want to be able to scroll and tell what songs you have and which one you are on too, right? So while some may find it ‘bulky’ we think it is actually as close to perfect as you can get with this kind of technology in mind.
We have already mentioned this feature in multiple sections, but just in case you skipped to this part because you have already owned previous versions, we felt covering it again might prove useful. You can still use your old band if you prefer its appearance and the way it feels, however you can upgrade this as well to a softer material lining and the sweat-wicking improvements of the new bands. These have additional color choices as well, though not many, as stated before (the white one does look pretty nice) and the band itself fits you and the device more snuggly.
Ease of Use
For the most part, it seems the Spark 3 is pretty easy to use, especially if all you are in for is the basics for running. It is easy to set up your route, check your running stats, watch your heart rate and even listen to music. The harder part on navigating the menu seems to come in with the multiple sports tracking, which has different stats for each type of routine. Finding the one you want and checking the stats is where you will have to begin memorizing the layout, which can take a couple days to get used to. Of course, this is true with any electronic device that you are new to navigating, so in all truth, we don’t see it as a downfall or ‘not easy to use’ moreover than a learning and memorization curve. (Those of us whose memories are not the best may find it ‘harder’ than others- but a good cup of coffee and some determination can get us there, right?!)
The TomTom Spark 3 comes with a rechargeable battery, as one would expect, and for all that it can accomplish, the span between charges is actually pretty amazing. Even with music, the battery can last between 6 to 8 hours, which is pretty awesome in our book. Most music players last right around the same, and this is with GPS and activity monitoring. What shortens this battery most is the heart monitor. With that, you can expect around 3-4 hours instead. Still not bad compared to most.
This one will take a little saving back with today’s economy, but for all that it does, it is actually a decent price. This is a quality product that is bound to last and can do that most on the market. With the design given, it can last a marathon run and keep track of it all before needing a recharge. With accessories, it costs close to $300 on most online orders, though a few have said they found it for less on certain sale days. As always, we prefer quality, because having that makes every dollar worth it.
There aren’t a lot of accessories for this, though you might consider the band itself to be one. Because it doesn’t require a phone, the only real extra parts are the charger and the headset. When the watch can do everything, it needs to without extra equipment, accessories are really on the redundant side.
-Route mapping and exploration
-Heart rate monitor
-Multiple sport tracker
-New sweat-wicking bands
If you are looking for a quality tracker that can do more than most, rather than less, this is definitely what you are looking for. There is very little this particular tracker can’t do, and it even plays your music without needing the extra connection to your phone. As long as you don’t mind saving back, the TomTom Spark 3 is the perfect fit for the ‘Must have it all’ fitness tracker.