Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 hands-on11
Here are our first impressions after seeing the smartwatch firsthand.
- Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 Classic hands-on
- Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 vs Watch 4 Classic
- Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 hands-on
- Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 hands-on
Design and Style
As mentioned above, the Galaxy Watch 4 is nice and sleek. It features a circular touch display surrounded by a uniform bezel but no trademark rotating bezel, keeping the bulk to a minimum.
Samsung has paired that screen with a matte aluminum frame, which feels premium. It’s home to two buttons for easier system navigation and attaches to the matching watch bands, but more on those below.
The Galaxy Watch 4 arrives in two sizes: a smaller 40mm version and a bigger 44mm model, each available in Bluetooth and LTE variants. The 40mm weighs in at 25.9g and the 44mm watch tips the scale at 30.3g. Needless to say, both feel extremely light (yet still sturdy) in person.
You’ll be able to pick up the Galaxy Watch 4 in four colors at launch: Silver, Black, and Green, and Pink Gold. Those versions all ship with matching 20mm silicone watch bands, though you’ll be able to purchase extra bands separately.
Display and Watch Faces
The touch screen found on the Galaxy Watch 4 uses AMOLED technology. The 40mm smartwatch is fitted with a 1.19-inch display and the 44mm model uses a slightly bigger 1.36-inch panel.
Both offer deep blacks, nice colors, and a decent level of brightness. However, we viewed the Galaxy Watch 4 in a well-lit room, so we’ll wait for the review before making any firm conclusions on that front.
What about the watch faces? Well, Samsung has included quite a few of its own, but third-party developers are able to create more options for the Galaxy Watch 4, so you’ll have access through Google's app ecosystem to a long list that’ll continue to expand over time. The downside is that Tizen watch faces won't be transferable.
Software, Health, and Performance
Beyond its design, the most exciting thing about the Galaxy Watch 4 is its software. Instead of using Samsung’s own Tizen software, the smartwatch runs the Wear OS 3 platform straight out of the box.
It felt smooth and responsive in person, but also familiar thanks to the One UI Watch interface that Samsung has added on top. The biggest change versus Tizen-powered Galaxy Watches is the catalog of apps, which now includes Google’s offerings.
All of that is backed by the new Exynos W920 chipset built on the 5-nanometer manufacturing process. Samsung has also thrown in 1.5GB of RAM and 16GB of storage to ensure you have no performance issues.
The 40mm Galaxy Watch 4 includes a 247mAh battery and the 44mm edition uses a 361mAh cell. We weren’t able to test out battery life during our brief hands-on with the smartwatches, so you’ll have to wait for our full review for those results, but Samsung says that both models can last up to 40 hours on a single charge, with a quick 30-minute charge giving the watch enough to last 10 hours.