Polar RC3 GPS Watch Review

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Running Polar GPS Watch

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Running Polar GPS Watch

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Polar RC3 GPS Watch



  • September 2012


Better known for its heart rate-monitoring software, Polar also makes some solid GPS tracing devices. The RC3 is the company's first watch that has a GPS sensor integrated into the wrist-mounted unit; other models require a separate receiver. 

The watch’s strength still lies in its parsing of heart rate data.  During your run, you get seven screens of display, with up to three metrics on each screen—including distance, time, calories burned, heart rate, HR zones, time spent in different HR zones, and a “back to start” feature.

At the conclusion of every run, you get a summary of your workout: a “Running Index” score tells you how you performed based on heart rate and speed/distance data collected; a “Training Benefit” message provides a written overview of the workout you just finished.

For example, after a one-hour run at 7:30 pace, the watch gave me a "Running Index" of 70.   It also said I had performed a "Steady State Training" run, explaining: "Excellent! This long session improved the endurance of your muscles and your aerobic fitness. It also increased your resistance to fatigue."

On polarpersonaltrainer.com, you can upload your run data for mapping and further analysis. One feature, “Training Load,” gives you a snapshot of your recent performance, to suggest whether you’re in need of rest or are recovered enough for high-intensity training. Workouts can be transferred by a micro-USB cable—the same used to charge many Android phones.

The watch comes in two versions: one without a heart rate monitor ($300) and one with a heart rate strap ($350).



Colors :     Black/Red
Average Battery Life :   12 hours
Weight :    1.3 Ounces
Altimeter: No
Compass: No
OS compatibility : Windows/Mac
Cycling functions: : Optional
Water-resistant depth : Splash Resistant



  • Durable: Lightweight and made from Polyurethane
  • All-In-One-System: Integrates Heart Rate Sensor, Stride Rate/Cadence/Speed Sensors, GPS
  • Computer Integration:  Can connect to computer to upload/download exercise run data



  •   A more cost effective solution than Garmin GPS watches


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