The Samsung Galaxy Watch 6 is a truly outstanding watch in its field. It’s a high-functioning, multi-faceted, ingenious bit of kit, perfect for the everyday fitness fan.
The Watch 6 delivers an excellent, updated design, both internally and externally. Just as premium on the outside as it is on the inside.
With a slightly thinner bezel and a slight adjustment to the case, there have been some minor tweaks. Otherwise though, this watch looks largely identical to the previous model. Which is a positive, when you consider that the Samsung Galaxy range are a stylish, great-looking bunch of watches; all featuring high-spec Super AMOLED screens with smooth, seamless navigation. Why mess around with a classic?!
The easy strap-swapping capability makes it simpler than ever to switch up your straps on a whim. And this is certainly a watch which looks great dressed up or down. Its style credentials mean it can be worn casually for a workout, or, with the simple addition of a leather (or vegan leather) strap, it can be worn in the most formal of settings. Casual yet classy!
The updated Exynos W930 processor and RAM deliver an enhanced performance and efficiency which doesn’t disappoint. Thanks to this extra power boost, the Watch 6 is seamlessly responsive, enabling you to navigate through the various functions quickly and smoothly, without any blips or buffering.
Samsung Wallet has been expanded to now include additional documents, such as airline tickets, which is a nice touch.
Jam packed with features, the Watch 6 delivers a wide range of new health tools including fall detection, high heart-rate notifications and mid-workout heart rate zone notifications.
The all-new Custom Workout feature enables you to construct multi-stage workouts that you can flick through, step-by step, at the touch of a button. Perfect for triathletes and fans of other multi-event activities.
The Sleep app has been reconfigured, for an enhanced sleep tracking performance. You still get the same brilliant sleep coaching of the Watch 5, complete with ‘sleep animal’ assignment, sleep coaching tips and commentary on your optimal energy times of the day. Additionally, you get sleep scores and more delivered directly from the watch, so you don’t have to bother going into the app on your phone. This means you can undertake a full sleep assessment from your wrist, without the need to have your phone handy, which is a real bonus. The information provided includes skin temperature and blood oxygen data and you get a thorough and insightful overview of your sleep which can be put to good use in aiding your overall sleep quality.
I found that the Watch 6 really comes into its own and impresses when paired with a Samsung phone. This enables the phone to really show off its true potential. The Samsung Health app is a quality offering and works in perfect harmony with the watch.
I especially liked how the watch can be used as a viewfinder for taking photos on your phone. It allows you to view a tiny image of the intended photo as it appears on the camera. A fun, effective and handy feature which works impressively well.
Another useful feature is the Google Play integration, which enables you to download Wear OS apps, such as Whatsapp, to your heart’s content, with no need for your phone. And, once downloaded, the apps work seamlessly for a glitch-free experience.
The welcome addition of multiple handy new features which make life that little bit better is a big bonus. The excellent sleep monitoring courtesy of the new sleep app is my particular favourite.
The high-performance screen is excellent quality and can be used for multiple purposes: from simply viewing workouts, to taking selfies and group photos in tandem with your phone.
I love the auto-detection of walking and running, without the need for pressing any buttons or flicking though screens. This is an historic feature in the Samsung Galaxy series, but a welcome one, which the Watch 6 delivers well on, with an extensive and insightful range of metrics provided. A handy explanation is given for the more advanced metrics and the Samsung Health app presents all the information concisely, complete with an attractive, full-colour GPS map which clearly depicts your route. It’s all very well-presented, useful and generally of a very premium quality indeed.
Another plus-point is the way in which synchronising the watch to a Samsung phone and the Samsung Health app allows the watch to really shine and deliver all it has to offer. Data can be transferred effortlessly across devices for a brilliant overall user experience.
It must be said that the battery life could be better. After a full charge, you get just over 24 hours’ worth of life from the watch before it needs another charge. Which is fine most of the time, but can be frustrating if you want to use the watch for sleep tracking, as you’ll need to remember to charge it every day to ensure it goes the distance.
If I was being hyper-critical, I’d point out that the Watch 6 perhaps doesn’t constitute the most major of upgrades to the Watch 5. However, that said, there are some significant, solid improvements to be found, so this latest model is by no means an exact replica of its predecessor.
Verdict: The Watch 6 is an outstanding offering by anyone’s standards, particularly if you’re a Samsung phone owner who can truly make the most of all the watch’s features and functions by pairing devices.
Marks out of 10:
Look & Feel: 9.5
Pros & Cons Summary:
- Fab, stylish, high-functioning design.
- Boosted processor and more RAM.
- New and improved wellness and sleep metrics.
- Relatively short battery life.
- Unable to share fitness data with Fitbit or Google Fit apps.
- Not a huge upgrade from the last model.