Monday, 13 August 2018 23:13

Samsung Galaxy Watch offers longer battery life, LTE works in 15 countries

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Fighting the Apple Watch and Google Android Wear watches is Samsung's new Galaxy Watch, taking a naming cue from Apple, with a headline of "up to 80+ hours" of battery life on the LTE model with "typical usage" as well as working in 15+ countries across 30+ carriers with both iPhones and Androids.

Due to be available to purchase in Australia from 4 October in both cellular LTEe-SIM and Bluetooth models from carriers, Samsung Experience Stores and online, the Samsung Galaxy Watch is the latest evolution of Samsung's wearable connected computing timepiece.

It will be available in three colours: Midnight Black, Silver and Rose Gold, in two watch face sizes (46mm and 42mm), with the cellular model will be priced "from A$649" and the Bluetooth model "from A$549".

Samsung naturally states its new Galaxy Watch "brings the best of the Samsung’s Galaxy ecosystem with long-lasting battery life, LTE connectivity, wellness capabilities and a timeless and personalised design".

It is billed as being able to "help users accomplish more with new stress and sleep monitoring capabilities, in addition to offering a more robust line up of style options including three new watch faces in Silver, Midnight Black and Rose Gold, and new customisable watch band colours".

D.J. Koh, president and chief executive, Samsung's IT and Mobile Communications Division, said: "At Samsung, we have a long history of providing consumers with choice, while maintaining innovation within our products, and we are excited to continue the proud heritage of our Galaxy line with our wearables.

“The new Galaxy Watch was designed for all lifestyles to help meet consumer needs, such as more efficient battery life to stay connected longer, and better wellness tracking to help users maintain their goals – we are delivering them with connected experiences, all at the touch of a wrist.”

Garry McGregor, vice-president of Samsung Australia’s Mobile Division, said: “The Galaxy Watch is a beautifully crafted timepiece that delivers on both style and functionality.

“The network connectivity of the cellular Galaxy Watch will give people the freedom to leave both their phone and wallet at home while staying connected through voice and data, along with the benefits of Samsung Pay.

“Samsung Pay was the first mobile wallet in Australia to integrate with all of the ‘Big Four’ banks, Galaxy Watch users can tap and pay transactions on-the-go.

“The cellular model provides a true e-SIM experience so customers can also use their Galaxy Watch when roaming overseas, which we believe sets our smartwatch apart from our competitors.”

Samsung proudly boasts the 46mm model offers "improved battery life of up to 80+ hours", which "eliminates the need for daily charging and helps consumers keep up with their busy week".

Naturally, Samsung notes that "battery life varies by device and usage: Galaxy Watch 46mm (80+ hours with typical usage; up to 168 hours with low usage) and Galaxy Watch 42mm (45+ hours with typical usage; up to 120 hours with low usage)", and obviously, "the actual time of battery life may vary depending on the network connection, component, setting, signal strength, noise and many other elements".

Even so, with a longer battery life, Samsung states: "Untethering from their smartphone has never been easier with Galaxy Watch’s LTE connectivity — across 30+ carriers and 15+ countries — for a true standalone experience across devices through messaging, calls, mapping and music. Users can also start and end their day with morning and evening briefings to help stay on top of reminders, weather and their latest schedule."

Live a balanced life

As you'd expect from a modern smartwatch, Samsung says its new watch has been "designed with wellness in mind", offering "a true holistic health experience with its new stress management tracker, which automatically detects high levels of stress and offers breathing exercises to help keep users centred and focused. In addition, a new advanced sleep tracker monitors all levels of sleep, including REM cycles, to help users adjust sleeping habits and get the rest they need to take on their day".

"With sleep and stress under control, Galaxy Watch also helps users achieve other health and wellness goals, including fitness. Galaxy Watch adds 21 new indoor exercises, tracking a total of 39 workouts that allow consumers to customise and change up their routines.

"Because balanced nutrition is as important as exercise, Galaxy Watch makes it easier than ever with intuitive calorie tracking and personalised alerts. In addition, users can stay on track of their meals using Bixby Vision on their Galaxy device. To take a photo of each meal and instantly log nutritional information in Samsung Health and on Galaxy Watch for better calorie management."

Design

Design is obviously a big part of the watch, too, with Samsung having designed its watch to "cater to more sizes and styles with a silver, 46mm version and 42mm option in black or rose gold.

"Users can customise Galaxy Watch even more with a selection of watch faces and straps including options from Braloba, a manufacturer of high quality watch straps.

"Galaxy Watch carries the legacy of Samsung’s smartwatches with its trademark circular, rotating bezel while embracing the digital look with Always On Display, in addition to improved usability.

"For the first time, Galaxy Watch features analog watch ticks and hourly chimes, and a depth effect that casts shadows defining every detail on the watch face for a traditional look and feel. In addition, Galaxy Watch’s certified military-level durability4 with Corning Gorilla Glass DX+ and industry-leading water resistance with a 5 ATM rating allows for long-lasting use, no matter the environment."

The Samsung Galaxy ecosystem

Just as Apple has an incredible ecosystem of products and services, so too does Samsung want its customers to know it also has quite an ecosystem in place.

We're told that "Galaxy Watch brings users all the benefits from the Galaxy Ecosystem creating a seamless experience with SmartThings, Samsung Health, Samsung Flow, Samsung Knox, Samsung Pay, Bixby and with partnerships like Spotify and Under Armour.

"Easily access and control devices on Galaxy Watch with SmartThings – all at the touch of a wrist – from turning on the lights and TV in the morning to adjusting the temperature before bed. Samsung makes music and multimedia control even easier on Galaxy Watch with Spotify allowing users to listen to songs offline or without a smartphone with Spotify Offline mode in addition to keeping information secure with Samsung Knox and easily unlocking PCs or tablets using Samsung Flow."

Galaxy Watch Specifications

Model
Galaxy Watch 46mm Silver
Galaxy Watch 42mm Midnight Black Galaxy Watch 42mm Rose Gold

Display
1.3” (33mm), Circular Super AMOLED (360 x 360)
Full Colour Always On Display
Corning Gorilla DX+

Size
46 x 49 x 13 63g (without strap)
41.9 x 45.7 x 12.7 49g (without strap)

Strap
22mm (Interchangeable)
Option Colour: Onyx Black, Deep Ocean Blue, Basalt Grey

20mm (Interchangeable)
Option Colour: Onyx Black, Lunar Grey, Terracotta Red, Lime Yellow, Cosmo Purple, Pink Beige, Cloud Grey, Natural Brown

Battery
46mm: 472mAh
42mm: 270mAh

AP
Exynos 9110 Dual core 1.15GHz

OS
Tizen Based Wearable OS 4.0

Memory
LTE model: 1.5GB RAM + 4GB Internal Memory
Bluetooth model: 768MB RAM + 4GB Internal Memory

Connectivity
3G/LTE, Bluetooth 4.2, Wi-Fi b/g/n, NFC, A-GPS/Glonass

Sensor
Accelerometer, Gyro, Barometer, HRM, Ambient Light

Charge
WPC based wireless charging

Durability
5ATM + IP68 / MIL-STD-810G

Compatibility
Samsung: Android 5.0 or later Other: Android 5.0 or later iPhone 5 and above, iOS 9.0 or above

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Alex Zaharov-Reutt

One of Australia’s best-known technology journalists and consumer tech experts, Alex has appeared in his capacity as technology expert on all of Australia’s free-to-air and pay TV networks on all the major news and current affairs programs, on commercial and public radio, and technology, lifestyle and reality TV shows. Visit Alex at Twitter here.

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