43mm Withings ScanWatch Horizon Review: A Dive Watch by Any Other Name Is Just a Dive Watch

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The Lowdown

Imagine the perfect combination of a chunky stainless dive watch and the most accurate and advanced hybrid smartwatch, and you’ll have the Withings ScanWatch Horizon. It’s a very handsome watch that gathers accurate health metrics, and it will look fantastic on almost any wrist.

Overall
5

Pros

  • The Withings ScanWatch Horizon looks like a classic diving watch, but it’s very smart
  • Battery life is insanely good
  • FDA approved and clinically validated ECG capable of detecting signs of AFib or irregular heartbeat rhythms
  • Medical-grade oximeter for accurate SpO2 measurements
  • Easy setup through the excellent Withings Health Mate app
  • If you want ScanWatch features in a smaller, more manageable size, the 38 and 42mm versions are available

Cons

  • At 43mm, the ScanWatch Horizon will likely be too large for people with very petite wrists
43mm Withings ScanWatch Horizon Review: A Dive Watch by Any Other Name Is Just a Dive Watch Listen to this article

There’s something so effortlessly fashionable about the chunky, utilitarian design of a traditional diving watch. But other than being able to withstand abyss-like pressures underwater, even the most expensive diving watches can’t do much more than tell the time and apprise the wearer of how long they’ve been underwater. The Withings ScanWatch Horizon, on the other hand, offers luxury dive watch design and features, but it is so much more than just a great-looking watch that is also water-resistant to 10ATMs.

The 43mm Withings ScanWatch Horizon on the author's 5.75" wrist.

Before I jump into this review, allow me to digress for just a moment.

I wore a 40mm Rolex GMT II for years because I love the look and feel of a chunky stainless steel watch and band on my wrist.

I’m also a long-time fan of Withings hybrid smartwatches because they look like traditional timepieces when they are, in fact, increasingly sophisticated fitness and health wearables. And of all the wearables and their accompanying apps that I’ve tried over the years, the Withings Health Mate app is my favorite.

The problem was that as good as it looked and felt when worn, the Rolex GMT II couldn’t do anything other than tell me the date and the time (in three zones, to be fair!) while making me a target for thieves.

Over time, I realized that as much as I loved wearing it, more often than not, I was leaving the comparatively “dumb” Rolex on its watch-winder, opting instead to wear a Withings watch because I wanted its health-tracking features.

As Withings hybrid smartwatches and the accompanying app offered more in-depth health-tracking features and helpful insights over the years, I’ve worn quite a few of their models, including the original Activité and the Steel HR.

And then came the ScanWatch line, which Withings introduced at CES 2020.

43mm Withings ScanWatch Horizon Review: A Dive Watch by Any Other Name Is Just a Dive Watch

The regular Withings ScanWatch is available in 38mm and 42mm sizes.

ScanWatch looks like and operates as an analog watch; it has hands for the hours and minutes. As with all the previous Withing’s hybrid smartwatches, step progress is shown in an inset analog subdial at the 6 o’clock position.

ScanWatch will automatically track your steps, workouts, sleep, and heart rate. In conjunction with the Health Mate app, it will provide valuable insights and progress data as you work toward your fitness goals.

If there’s a set time that you need to get up each morning, ScanWatch can determine the best point during your sleep cycle to wake you with a gentle vibration.

As we saw on the Withings Steel HR, the ScanWatch has a circular notification subdial at the 12 o’clock position that displays information, including the date, progress toward daily activity goals, settings, and more.

The ScanWatch can also alert you to smartphone notifications for calls, texts, meetings, and other apps with a gentle vibration and lines of text on its subdial.

However, unlike any previous Withings hybrid smartwatches, ScanWatch has a built-in FDA-certified and clinically validated ECG capable of detecting signs of atrial fibrillation or irregular heartbeat rhythms.

ScanWatch also has a medical-grade oximeter for accurate SpO2 measurements; the watch will track your breathing in conjunction with the ECG and SPO2 readings to measure any sleep disturbances or signs of sleep apnea.

Other ScanWatch-exclusive features include a sapphire glass crystal, a raise-to-wake display, a PMOLED subdial, climbed floor tracking, a do not disturb option, and a scrollable crown that quickly accesses the different settings and modes.

ScanWatch’s incredibly long-lasting battery can provide up to 30 days of use on a single charge, and it gives an additional 20 more days of use in power reserve mode.

If you’re like me and prefer to wear an accurate health tracker with smart features that looks like an analog watch, then the Withings ScanWatch seems like the obvious choice. In fact, I’ve been wearing a 42mm ScanWatch in black since January 2021.

In conjunction with the excellent Withings Health Mate app, the ScanWatch has provided me with invaluable health insights, tracking, and the ability to schedule activity reminders, set goals, and manage achievements.

43mm Withings ScanWatch Horizon Review: A Dive Watch by Any Other Name Is Just a Dive Watch

Withings ScanWatch

Even though the Withings ScanWatch is a great looking watch that’s proven to be the best health and fitness tracker that I’ve ever used, there has been one constant niggling caveat in the back of my mind:

While ScanWatch is a good-looking timepiece, you’d never confuse it with a chunky dive watch, and even though I’ve never regretted selling the Rolex, I have really missed wearing a watch like it on my wrist.

And then, last November, the Withings ScanWatch Horizon was announced, and I got a severe case of gadget lust.

As a special edition of the ScanWatch line, the Withings ScanWatch Horizon pays homage to the Rolex Submariners that can cost tens of thousands of dollars, but this is a 100 Meter capable watch that comes loaded with state-of-the-art health-tracking technology.

Be still my beating heart.

I’m pretty sure that I drooled on my keyboard as I wrote up the November news post about the Withings ScanWatch Horizon; it’s even available in my two favorite colors, green and blue! And though every single promo photo showed it on a man’s wrist, I felt like Withings might have actually created my perfect wearable.

ThermoWorks Thermapen Mk4

Still with me? Now we can jump into the review.

The Withings ScanWatch Horizon retail box.

The 43mm ScanWatch Horizon has a unidirectional rotating stainless-steel bezel with laser engraved markers like a classic dive watch. It also has traditional Luminova hollow watch hands, indicators, and thick indices that will glow after being exposed to bright light.

Water-resistant to 10ATM or 328′ (the same as the GMT II), the Withings ScanWatch Horizon should be able to hang just fine with you on any aquatic or sartorial adventures.

The Withings ScanWatch Horizon retail box.

Inside the box, you’ll find the ScanWatch Horizon, an oyster metal link bracelet, a green fluoroelastomer (FKM) wristband, a magnetic charging cable, a wristband toolkit, and a quick-start guide. The wristband toolkit includes a pin punch, hammer, and holder to adjust the metal link wristband’s fit and size.

The ScanWatch Horizon’s fluoroelastomer (FKM) wristband will fit wrists from about 6.4″ to 9.4″, and the metal wristband will fit wrists from about 5.5″ up to 8.6″.

Tools included with the Withings ScanWatch Horizon in the retail box.

The subdial’s PMOLED display activates when you press the crown; you can then roll the crown to scroll through the on-display menu and features and then press the crown again when you are ready to make a selection or activate a measurement.

When you press the crown, if the watch’s hands are sitting over the PMOLED display, they will helpfully move to the 10 o’clock and 2 o’clock positions for easier access to the display’s contents.

Detail of the stainless steel oyster bracelet that comes with the Withings ScanWatch Horizon.

The PMOLED display has a 13.8mm diameter (0.54″) with 116 x 80 pixels.

The ScanWatch Horizon measures 47mm from the left side of the bezel to the tip of the crown; from top to bottom, it is 43mm. Including the depth of the underside sensor that will press into your skin, the Withings ScanWatch Horizon is 14mm thick.

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Since the watch is meant to be worn snugly so the sensors can take accurate measurements, on the wrist the watch’s thickness is more like 11mm, which is actually less thick than the Rolex GMT Master II (12.4mm) or the Submariner (12.3mm).

The author wearing the Withings ScanWatch Horizon.

Because the Withings ScanWatch Horizon is technically a man’s watch, I knew going into this that the green wristband would probably be too big for me (it was), and I’d likely need to remove several metal links to fit the metal oyster bracelet to my 5.75″ wrist (I did).

Fortunately, this was quite easy to do with the included wristband toolkit.

I particularly appreciate that the metal oyster wristband was almost as easy to install as Withing’s other wristbands are.

The only difference is that instead of using a single quick-release pin on each end of the strap that connects with the lugs on each side, the metal band has two quick-release pins on each end that connect with the lugs. This method is a lot easier than using a watch pin tool to remove or replace the band!

The Withings ScanWatch Horizon

While I can’t remember ever sleeping with the GMT II on my wrist (what would be the point?), I’d never had an issue sleeping while wearing any of the Withings hybrid smartwatches, including the 42mm ScanWatch. I’ve found that sleeping while wearing the 43mm ScanWatch Horizon hasn’t been an issue either.

43mm Withings ScanWatch Horizon Review: A Dive Watch by Any Other Name Is Just a Dive Watch

When you set up your ScanWatch Horizon, the Withings Health Mate app will walk you through every step. Notably, you can associate more than one Withings watch with your account, so if you like to mix things up and wear different watches on (or for) different occasions, you can do that.

Once the Withings ScanWatch Horizon has been paired to your phone, the app will walk you through a series of screens that explain how to use the watch’s various features.

Once setup is complete, all that’s left is to wear the Withings ScanWatch Horizon and allow it to start gathering your health metrics. Your metrics are stored in the Health Mate app, where you can see the latest values and access the historical values for your data.

43mm Withings ScanWatch Horizon Review: A Dive Watch by Any Other Name Is Just a Dive Watch

And just like that, I now have the chunky style of a classic stainless steel dive watch that I prefer back on my wrist, and I have access to the ScanWatch’s upgraded health tracking and the Withings Health Mate app. I am calling this a win!

The author wearing the Withings ScanWatch Horizon on her left wrist.

If you hadn’t guessed, the Withings ScanWatch Horizon has proven to be my perfect smartwatch.

Imagine the perfect combination of a chunky stainless dive watch and the most accurate and advanced hybrid smartwatch, and you’ll have the Withings ScanWatch Horizon. It’s a very handsome watch that gathers accurate health metrics, and it will look fantastic on almost any wrist.

The Withings ScanWatch Horizon retails for $499.95; it is available directly from the manufacturer and other retailers, including Amazon and Best Buy.

Source: Manufacturer supplied review sample

What I Like: The Withings ScanWatch Horizon looks like a classic diving watch, but it’s very smart; Battery life is insanely good; FDA approved and clinically validated ECG capable of detecting signs of AFib or irregular heartbeat rhythms; Medical-grade oximeter for accurate SpO2 measurements; Easy setup through the excellent Withings Health Mate app; If you want ScanWatch features in a smaller, more manageable size, the 38 and 42mm versions are available

What Needs Improvement: At 43mm, the ScanWatch Horizon will likely be too large for people with very petite wrists

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About the Author

Judie Lipsett Stanford
I've had a fascination with all types of gadgets and gizmos since I was a child, beginning with the toy robot that my grandmother gave my brother - which I promptly "relieved him of" in 1973. I'm a self-professed gadget magpie. I can't tell you how everything works, but I'm known world-wide for using a product until I have a full understanding of what it does, what its limitations are, and if it excels in any given area — or not.