Samsung Galaxy Watch Active under test: the sporty Smartwatch
By Linky Johnson 2019-04-30 135 0
The Smartwatches from Samsung have been among the best models on the market since the introduction of the Gear S2. A simple and intuitive operating system and an extraordinary operating concept ensure a lot of fun on the wrist. With the Gear and Galaxy watches you were able to navigate through the menus using a rotating wheel, the so-called bezel. This is no longer the case with the Samsung Galaxy Watch Active. But the Smartwatch is light as a feather.
Without bezel - but lighter
The case of Samsung's Smartwatch is made of aluminium, looks like it's made of one piece and is very high quality. The fact that Samsung made the display a bit smaller than the small version of the Galaxy Watch contributes to the low court. The display now measures only 1.1 inches. This makes the watch look less powerful on the wrist, even almost inconspicuous. Especially on slim forearms the watch looks more fitting than the more powerful big sister of Samsung. In sports, it also no longer carries so much weight.
Without the bezel, the question of operation remains. This is done via the touchscreen, which you can use to wipe through the menus. There are also two buttons on the side. The upper one serves as a back button, the lower one brings you back to the main menu in case of doubt. There you have to aim for the small app icons on the display. By the way, the omission of the Galaxy Watch Active bezel doesn't mean that Samsung will remove it from future Smartwaches.
The Galaxy Watch Active focuses on sport
With the Samsung Gear Sport, Koreans already have a dedicated sports watch in their program. The second Smartwatch for athletes is now a Galaxy. The name already reveals that the Samsung Galaxy Watch Active is also a Smartwatch for active wearers. The heartbeat sensor on the underside makes this clear. But it not only transmits your heartbeats, the watch can also point out unusual frequencies. The Galaxy Watch Active uses another function to determine your stress level and recommends breathing pauses if necessary. You can also monitor and evaluate your sleep with the Smartwatch.
Seven sensors are available to measure your sporting activities. The watch automatically detects when you start a workout and when you take a break. But you'll have to cut back when you swim. The watch is water resistant up to 5 bar, but the automatic activity detection for swimming does not work yet, but will be delivered later as an update. But Samsung fixed another problem. Earlier models tracked the resumption of activity after a short break (for example at a red traffic light) as a second workout. This should not happen anymore with the Galaxy Watch Active. That's good!
You can track your mileage with the watch via GPS. The evaluation of your sporting activities can be done directly on your wrist. In the Samsung Health app you can see how many steps you've taken, how many floors you've climbed and how many calories you've burned. The sports functions can of course be used without a smartphone or your own SIM card. The fitness tracking features can compete with those of explicit sports watches like Garmin's Forerunner models. Other Smartwatches like the Apple Watch Series 3 or the Huawei Watch 2 can't keep up.
Smartwatch functions are also on board
The Galaxy Watch Active also functions as a Smartwatch. You can easily pair it with your smartphone via Bluetooth. You can have messages and calls routed to your wrist and answer them directly via your watch. This works in conjunction with all Android smartphones - like the Galaxy series from Samsung - and the iPhone, but with the latter you're a bit more limited. In addition to your smartphone, you can also connect Galaxy Watch Active to other Samsung Gear gadgets, such as Wireless Headphones Gear Icon X, via Bluetooth.
Additionally you can add apps to the Galaxy Watch Active. Besides apps you know from smartphones, like Spotify or MyFitnessPal, the Galaxy Watch's yield was very low. Except for some Watchfaces there was little to get.
First impression: Cheap alternative with small cutbacks
Smaller screen, no bezel or in short: The Samsung Galaxy Watch Active doesn't offer as much as the Galaxy Watch, but is much lighter, more stylish - and cheaper. You get the watch in black, silver, green and rose gold for 249 Euro. For the cheapest version of the Galaxy Watch you have to pay 299 Euro. All in all the Galaxy Watch Active seems to be a good deal after the first trial. Whether the impression is confirmed in the test, you can find out here in due time.
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