Samsung launched the $279.99 Galaxy Watch 5 and $449.99 Galaxy Watch 5 Pro today at Unpacked. The business seems to have listened to complaints regarding the Galaxy Watch 4’s battery life. The Watch 5 and Watch 5 Pro include larger batteries, faster charging, and better durability.
Samsung’s Galaxy Watch 5 series reshuffles its smartwatch range. While the Galaxy Watch 4 renamed the primary Galaxy Watch and Watch Active lines from Tizen, this year’s presentation introduced the Galaxy Watch 5 Pro. The Galaxy Watch 5 is the entry-level flagship, while the Pro is for outdoor aficionados. Neither has Samsung’s spinning bezel, but both have a touch bezel. The Galaxy Watch 4 Classic is a physical bezel option between the Watch 5 and Pro.
The Galaxy Watch 5 is 40mm and 44mm, but the Pro is 45mm. All watches have a 1.18GHz Exynos W920 processor, 1.5GB of RAM, and 16GB of storage. The Galaxy Watch 5 has an upgraded 3-in-1 BioActive sensor that measures ECGs, heart rate, and body composition. Samsung says the enhanced sensor gives individualized sleep coaching to the Watch 5. GPS, contactless payments, LTE, Bluetooth 5.2, and Wi-Fi are built-in. Both watches are 5ATM and IP68 waterproof.
Body temperature sensor is new. Samsung’s head of wearables and accessories told The Verge the temperature sensor will add another data point for sleep tracking. Wegener said adding the sensor will give developers more health and fitness options.
Battery life is this year’s significant hardware improvement. 40mm Watch 5 has 284mAh battery, 44mm has 410mAh. That’s 40 hours per charge. The Pro’s 590mAh battery lasts 80 hours, or 20 hours of continuous GPS use.
Samsung upgraded batteries and charging speed. It promises a 45 percent charge in 30 minutes. Sleep trackers can get eight hours of battery in eight minutes, the business claimed.
We’ll have to evaluate how far these larger batteries go, especially with power-hungry features like the always-on display and Google Assistant. Both the Galaxy Watch 4 and Watch 4 Classic fell short of Samsung’s 40-hour battery life guarantee. Still, if Samsung nails battery life, it’ll go a long way toward rectifying the Galaxy Watch 4.
The Galaxy Watch 5 is otherwise unchanged. The key design changes are a sapphire crystal display and a curvier rear to improve 3-in-1 sensor skin contact. Software updates are more meaningful. One UI Watch 4.5 provides new accessibility features, an improved typing interface, and dual-SIM compatibility. Wear OS 3 will also have SoundCloud and Deezer apps and Google Maps voice navigation. Samsung Galaxy Watch owners can now access Google Assistant. Bixby is still available on the Watch 5 and Pro, Samsung assures.
The Pro has flashier updates because it’s new and aimed for a different demographic (aka, the Garmin and Polar crowd). It’s more durable than the Watch 5 with a titanium case and 29GPa sapphire crystal display. New magnetic clasp.
Outdoor lovers will love the Pro’s mapping features. Download GPX itineraries with turn-by-turn guidance for hiking and cycling. Track-back lets you return the way you came. This is common on multisport GPS watches but not on flagship smartwatches. Samsung’s potential to woo Garmin fans will depend on the Pro’s multiday battery life.
Pricing and Availability
Preorders for the Galaxy Watch 5 and 5 Pro begin today and delivery on August 26. The Watch 5 costs $279.99 and the Pro $449.99. LTE adds $50. Both watches offer a $329.99 Bluetooth-only Golf Edition.