Familiar on the outside, brand new on the inside: here’s the Galaxy Watch4

New Chipsets, new systems

Samsung has thrown in the Tizen-based smartwatch system. Still, we knew this in advance because Google and the Korean manufacturer had previously revealed that the next-generation Samsung watches would already be built around Android Wear.

Instead, the question was how much Samsung would redesign the previously bound, non-customizable Android Wear interface based on its own needs. The answer is given by the four devices just introduced, as Watch4 is made in so many versions.

Watch4 and Watch4 Classic will be available in two sizes each, but the functionality of the products is the same. In addition to the differences in size, the differences will be caused by the eSIM capability and the presence or absence of the bezel, as the ring known from Watch3 is the hallmark of Classic. At the same time, the plain Watch4 will inherit Watch Active 2. This also means that the Watch Active name will be phased out the same way as the Tizen system.

Whichever clock we turn on, we’ll find that the logic of the interface the quality of the icons and widgets is practically the same as we’ve been used to, merely replacing the hitherto circular menu with a set of full-screen icons. Still, Samsung could save the functionality and layout used under the Tizen system well. The end-user doesn’t need to know what operating system is behind the otherwise quick and responsive menu.

Of course, a new feature or two has arrived, such as the improved back panel BioActive sensor, which Samsung says is more accurate than ever before, not only measuring blood pressure, blood oxygen levels, and ECG, but also analyzing body composition in 15 seconds, collecting and evaluating allegedly 2,400 data. There is also new hardware for the Wear OS and the new series, the Exynos W920 with a bandwidth of 5 nm, which we wrote more about here.

The benefits of using Wear OS are already visible. With the Google platform making available the number of apps not previously available in the Ten environments, the list of compatible fitness apps has expanded. Still, any phone app that has an hourly equivalent or at least uses the device on your wrist will be automatically installed on the new Watch4s after you start using it. Returning to the Google ecosystem is also easy for Samsung. Still, it also required the Korean manufacturer to develop the fresh Wear OS and put the One UI Watch interface on the devices.

The watches also meet the IP68 and MIL-STD 810G military standards, and the sleek Watch4 has an aluminum housing. The Classic has a stainless steel case. The latter version is available in 46 and 42 mm sizes, without a bezel Watch4 is available in 44 and 40 mm versions. The last is already a minimal and feminine design. Larger displays have 450 x 450 pixels, and smaller ones display “only” 396 x 396 pixels using the Super AMOLED panel. Of course, the size of the battery also varies with the size of the watches, and we find 361 mAh batteries in the 44-46 mm versions and 247 mAh batteries in the 40-42 mm versions.

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