I’m not really a fan of wearables, but I can see their appeal for many. I suppose it comes down to the fact that I’m not too interested in how my bodily health is doing (though perhaps I’ll regret that in the years to come).
Regarding the argument of convenience, I find my smartphone to be plenty convenient and don’t need an extra device on my wrist to act as an extension of it.
But this doesn’t mean I’m opposed to the idea of smartwatches; I’m always interested to see what’s new with the current tech, smartwatches included, released by various brands.
One of the most recent smartwatches I’ve tried was the Samsung Galaxy Watch4, which I quite liked, but personally have little use for.
For those who are interesting in getting the Watch4, here’s a piece that breaks down its features into pros and cons.
1. Comfortable fit
If I had to compare, the Watch3 had a more mature look to it, especially with the leather straps. The default Watch4 straps, however, are silicone. Based on looks and the marketing by Samsung, I’d say the Watch4 is aimed at a much younger, more active generation.
Some don’t like the silicone look, but I find it simple and sleek, and it makes it a lot more versatile in all kinds of situations. I’d be less worried about getting sweaty with it on because cleaning it would be easier too, thanks to the durability of silicone.
The overall comfort of the silicone straps was nice, and the watch face’s size (I got the 41mm one) wasn’t too large or bulky, so I didn’t feel uncomfortable keeping it on while I slept.
2. Crisp display
The Watch4’s Super AMOLED display was vibrant and clear, as to be expected. Using it during the daytime was no issue, as even at a lower brightness, I could still access the screen.
Samsung also has given users a wider, more fun variety of watch faces to choose from, again pointing to the intended audience the Watch4 is marketed towards. That being said, everyone should technically be able to find a design that suits them.
3. New software
The Watch4 is the first Samsung smartwatch to have the One UI Watch software, which makes the smartwatch even more of an extension for your smartphone.
With it, you don’t have to individually download the watch version of apps that are already on your phone, as they’ll be automatically downloaded when you pair the watch. This meant that once my Watch4 was paired, it was already setup and I could use it immediately.
The new OS also allows users to access apps like Spotify and Google Maps, with more downloadable apps from the Google Play Store on the watch.
4. Great call quality
The loudspeaker for calls was loud and clear, and whoever I called reported that my voice came through loud and clear on the other end of the line too.
Because the smartwatch is an extension of your phone, clear call quality was a definite must. I found it useful when I was doing dishes with my phone in another room, as I could still pick up my calls as well as not worry about a bit of water, since the watch has an IP68 water-resistance rating.
5. Quality health tracking
The Watch4 has all the health and fitness features you’d expect from a mid-range smartwatch, which I obviously underutilised, except for the sleep and stress trackers.
Its sleep tracking was pretty accurate, and the stress tracker wasn’t one that I frequently checked or had any actual use for, but it was still interesting to see my stats.
Something new was the BMI reading feature, but I found that it fluctuated frequently, leading me to question its reliability. Plus its readings were quite off from previous BMI measurements I’ve done not too long ago. That being said, it’s likely Samsung will continue to improve on it through updates.
There are also electrocardiographic (ECG) features and blood pressure monitoring, but unfortunately, these aren’t available in Malaysia yet.
1. Poor battery life
Though I kept the Watch4 in power-saving mode with low brightness and GPS off, I found that its 361mAh battery would still need to be charged within a day or two.
It may have been the sleep tracker that was using up most of the juice, but it was one of the main features I would actually use, therefore its battery life is a con in my books.
To make matters worse, I found charging the Watch4 to be rather slow, which was odd, as I was using the original charger and wire it came with. To navigate this, I would charge it while showering so it’d be ready for use once I was done.
2. No music on loudspeaker
Because calls over the Watch4 were done over loudspeaker, I’d assumed I could play music out loud too. To my dismay, I couldn’t.
I could connect wireless earbuds to the watch, but there were times when I just wanted to play my music out loud yet couldn’t. It’s very much a personal preference, but I’ll still have to dock a point in this area.
In a nutshell…
The Watch4 is a great extension for your Android smartphone, even more so if you’re using a Samsung Galaxy phone. Despite the minor gripes I had with it, I enjoyed using the watch for the most part.
What could seal the deal for many is its RM899 price tag, which is half of the Watch3’s upon launch (RM1,799).
With the new features and upgrades, it’s almost a no-brainer to pick the Watch4 over any of Samsung’s older smartwatches, unless there was a specific design you really liked, such as the rotating bezel, which is missing on the Watch4.
Read our full review on the Samsung Galaxy Watch4 here.You can read more of our Samsung content here.