Samsung Galaxy Watch Review: Feature-Rich With Great Battery Life

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Samsung Galaxy Watch: Build Quality And Aesthetics

The Samsung Galaxy Watch features a polished stainless steel lug, with a rotating, notched, smoked-grey bezel, and a perfectly flat crystal made of durable, scratch-resistant Corning Gorilla Glass DX+. The design language is reminiscent of a beefy, high-end diving watch with small bump-outs at 3 and 9 o’clock and a pair of oblong buttons on the right.
samsung galaxy watch notifications
The 46mm Galaxy Watch featured here looks substantial, but clean and sleek at the same time. The dimensions are 46 x 49 x 13 mm and the watch weights a stout 63 grams without the strap. The smaller 42mm model is a much more petite 41.9 x 45.7 x 12.7 mm and weighs only 49 grams.
samsung galaxy watch
The overall design is attractive in our opinion, and despite being somewhat thick, there is nothing gaudy or over-the-top to detract from the aesthetic. Of course, because the watch uses standard 22mm straps (20mm on the 42mm Galaxy Watch), and thousands of watch-faces are available, it’s customizable in a myriad of ways to suit your preferred look or lifestyle. Speaking of the straps, the included black rubber straps on the model we evaluated seemed durable, but felt kind of funky when we got a little sweaty. Of course, that’s the case with all rubbery watch bands, and leather and metal bands are available, but we felt it was worth mentioning nonetheless if you’re sensitive to that sort of thing.
samsung galaxy watch back
The Galaxy Watch is IP68 certified for dust and water resistance, it meets the MIL-STD-810G standard for durability, and it is water resistant at up to 5 atmospheres. All of that means the Galaxy Watch should hold up to some rigorous activity, without giving up the ghost, and dust, sweat, and some bumps here and there shouldn’t cause any major damage.

The Corning Gorilla Glass DX+ used on the Galaxy Watch has improved scratch resistance and 85% better visibility outdoors versus the Gear S3, thanks to reduced reflections. The 360x360 display under that glass is also relatively bright and vibrant, so making out what’s being shown on screen shouldn’t be an issue in virtually any lighting condition. In the couple of weeks that we have been using the Galaxy Watch, we haven’t had any visibility issues with the device at all, day or night, whether indoors or outdoors.
samsung galaxy watch face
Overall, we think the Galaxy Watch looks great and its build quality is top notch. Tolerances are tight, the buttons are firm and have no play whatsoever, and the bezel rotates smoothly, with confident clicks throughout its range of motion. The crystal and display are also good, though you can make out individual pixels on the 46mm model’s 1.3” screen. The slightly higher pixel density on the 42mm model’s 1.2” screen may mitigate this somewhat.

Samsung Galaxy Watch Charging And Battery Life

samsung galaxy watch charging
The Galaxy Watch’s wireless charger also means there’s no port or connectors to worry about. Simply place the watch in the base and it starts charging immediately. We found that the 46mm Galaxy Watch with its 470mAh battery charges at a rate of about 40% per hour, or roughly 2.5 hours to a full charge. While we’re on the subject, we should also mention that battery life is exceptional. Samsung claims roughly 4 days of battery life on the 46mm Galaxy Watch, but we’ve been getting 5.5 days+ per charge with consistent use, tracking workouts, sleep, stress levels, and heart-rate, receiving notifications from over 20 apps, and using it as an alarm clock almost daily. We have only made a few test calls from the Watch, however. If you plan to make calls from the Watch, that will likely drain the battery much faster.

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