August 18, 2022
Samsung Galaxy Watch 4G Review

The Samsung Galaxy Watch has been one of our favorite wearables since we reviewed it last year. It has a beautiful design, a useful rotating bezel, and impressive battery life for the kind of functionality it offers. We experienced a moment when we unboxed the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4G, which the company recently sent us for review. Samsung only launched the 4G version of the Galaxy Watch in India in October this year, even though the rest of the world got its hands on it with the non-LTE model in 2018. At that time, e-SIMs were not widespread. Available in India, which could have prompted Samsung to delay the launch. Now that the Galaxy Watch 4G is fully functional in India, should you buy one? We review the Galaxy Watch 4G to find out.

Samsung Galaxy Watch 4G Button Samsung Galaxy Watch 4G ReviewGalaxy Watch 4G has two buttons on the right

Samsung Galaxy Watch 4G Design

Since the Galaxy Watch 4G is just a variant of the Galaxy Watch, its design is similar to the unit we’ve already reviewed, and you can read more about it here. This is still one of the best designed watches we reviewed. This variant, the Galaxy Watch 4G, also comes in two sizes: 42mm and 46mm. You can choose between Black and Rose Gold if you opt for the smaller one, while the larger size is only available in Silver. We have 46mm variant for this review.

We still find the rotating bezel helpful for navigating through menus, and we love its attractive design. This helps us to know how much quantity we have input. A 1.3-inch AMOLED display sits below the bezel and has Corning Gorilla Glass DX+ to help prevent scratches. We liked this display as it was crisp and bright enough to be seen from outside.

There are two buttons on the right side of the device, both of which have a textured pattern to make them easy to distinguish. The top one is the back button, while the other is the home button. Below the home button is a microphone that can be used to take calls on the watch. There is only one speaker on the left side of the watch.

Samsung Galaxy Watch 4G Heart Rate Sensor Samsung Galaxy Watch 4G ReviewThe heart-rate scanner on the back is accurate.

At the bottom, you’ll find a heart-rate sensor and hardware for wireless charging. The wireless charger in the box remains the same as the one we used with the Galaxy Watch. It still has a Micro-USB port, but an update to USB Type-C would be appreciated. The Galaxy Watch 4G is IP68 rated and water-resistant up to 5ATM.

Our 46mm Galaxy Watch comes with a 22mm watch band made of silicone. It was easy to remove and could be replaced with any band of the same size. We found the stock band comfortable even when we were sweating.

Samsung Galaxy Watch 4G Specification and Software

Samsung Galaxy Watch 4G uses Samsung’s Exynos 9110 SoC, which is a dual-core processor clocked at 1.5GHz. The Galaxy Watch has 1.5GB of RAM and 4GB of internal storage that can be used to store music and apps. The Galaxy Watch lets you pair Bluetooth headphones directly, eliminating the need for a smartphone in daily use (though you still need one to set it up).

The Galaxy Watch 4G runs on Samsung’s Wearable OS which is based on Tizen. It can be paired with Android as well as iOS devices. In terms of app support, we found it limited compared to Google’s Wear OS and Apple’s WatchOS. Samsung has tried to reduce the dependence on third-party apps by offering a lot of out-of-the-box features. In terms of connectivity, the watch has Bluetooth 4.2, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, NFC, A-GPS, Glonass and 4G LTE. It also has an accelerometer, gyroscope, barometer, heart rate sensor and ambient light sensor.

The underlying software is the same as what we used during our review of the Galaxy Watch late last year, so we recommend that you check that review for details. Cellular connectivity of the Galaxy Watch 4G needs to be set up using the Galaxy Wearable app on your smartphone. In India, only Airtel and Reliance Jio offer e-SIM functionality, so you have to subscribe with any provider for 4G connectivity on the watch.

Samsung Galaxy Watch 4G Connectivity Samsung Galaxy Watch 4G ReviewLTE lets you take calls directly on the watch.

We used our Galaxy Watch 4G with Jio e-SIM which was easy to set up. The smartphone you use to set up the watch requires a SIM card inserted. The watch smartly turns off its 4G capabilities when paired with a smartphone, and when you go out of range. You can override this and keep the watch connected to the 4G network at all times, but this will have an impact on battery life.

Samsung Galaxy Watch 4G Performance and Battery Life

Samsung’s AMOLED display on the Galaxy Watch 4G is vivid and has decent viewing angles. Screen brightness is automatically adjusted based on surrounding lighting conditions. The bezel makes it easy to navigate, and we liked the smartwatch’s simple UI.

We didn’t notice any lag or stutter when using the Galaxy Watch 4G, and the overall experience was great. In fact, we found it faster than the Apple Watch Series 5 (Review) we tested recently. The Galaxy Watch packs in quite a few fitness features, for example, reminding us to move if we sat at our desks for a while. This is a very handy feature that can help you avoid sitting for too long without any movement. When we go out for a walk, the device will automatically detect it and start logging our steps. We walked 1,000 steps and the Galaxy Watch 4G recorded 990 which is an acceptable deviation, though we saw better results from other devices such as the Amazfit Bip Lite that we reviewed recently.

The Galaxy Watch 4G also tracks heart rate at all times, and is set to measure it at 10-minute intervals by default. You can change it to Always-On, but that will reduce your battery life. One neat touch we noticed was that the watch would automatically switch to continuous heart rate tracking during a workout, saving us the effort of doing so. Heart-rate tracking was accurate when we compared this device to the Apple Watch Series 5.

Samsung Galaxy Watch 4G Step Counting Samsung Galaxy Watch 4G ReviewSamsung’s Galaxy Watch 4G does step counting accurately.

Since the Galaxy Watch 4G has in-built GPS and cellular connectivity, we left our paired smartphone behind and went for a walk. After walking a distance that we know as exactly 1km, the Galaxy Watch 4G reported it as 1.02km, which is pretty good.

Sleep tracking was accurate too, and the Galaxy Watch 4G could accurately log our sleep and wake-up times. However, we didn’t like wearing the watch while sleeping, as it was neither compact nor lightweight like the Amazfit Bip Lite (Review) or fitness bands like the Mi Band 4 (Review) and Honor Band 5 (Review).

Galaxy Watch 4G battery life will vary depending on how you use the different features of the device. Using straight out of the box with 4G set to auto without the always-on display feature, with heart-rate tracking set to 10-minute intervals, and constantly connected to our Samsung Galaxy S10+ (Review) device, it Lasted about four days for us. During this we were constantly checking notifications on the watch. When we switched to 4G, enabled the always-on display and made a few calls through the device, the battery life went down to just two days. Charging took a long time. This wearable device gets charged 35 percent in an hour and takes about three hours to fully charge.

Decision

We’re reviewing this 4G version of the Galaxy Watch after almost a year of reviewing the Wi-Fi version, and not much has changed in the wearable space since then. WearOS still hasn’t managed to make any major progress, and while the Apple Watch Series 5 manages to do a lot, it’s limited to working only with Apple devices, and commands a premium.

The 42mm variant of the Galaxy Watch 4G is priced at Rs. 28,490 while the larger 46mm version costs Rs 30,990. There is not much competition for the Galaxy Watch 4G at these prices. However, despite the cost, Android users should choose the Galaxy Watch 4G only if they require cellular connectivity over the smartwatch. Samsung should consider bringing the cellular variant of the new Galaxy Watch Active 2 to India, giving buyers more options to choose from.

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