Watches do much more than just telling the time these days. Smartwatches have the capability to be a fitness tracker, a wallet, a music player, and even a phone! With all the smartwatches on the market today, finding the right one for you can be quite time-consuming, but we're here to help you make that choice! We're going to take a close look at two popular smartwatches on the market — the Samsung Galaxy Watch vs. the Samsung Galaxy Active 2. Check out our video above to see what have to say about the two watches! Otherwise, keep reading for a quick overview of our thoughts.
First, let's look at the appearance. The Galaxy Watch exudes elegance from the two-tone black and silver, the rotating bezel, and the textured buttons. It looks very much like a lifestyle watch and has a bit of extra heft and thickness so it appears to be sturdy and reliable. You do feel it on your wrist, but the weight feels good. Our favourite thing about the appearance is the rotating bezel, which is a great design for navigating a wearable! It's very smooth and clicks for feedback when scrolling through apps and messages - far better than using your finger (which sometimes ends up covering the information you're looking at).
The Active 2, on the other hand, has a design the reflects its focus — being active. The housing is slightly thinner and lighter, and the buttons are smoothed off and low profile. Despite the smaller design, you're not losing any navigation thanks to a software-implemented rotating bezel. While the feeling is different to the real thing (like on the Galaxy Watch), you still get vibrating as feedback when you use the rotating bezel. It's a fair trade-off for keeping a minimal design, which is probably important to those looking for a fitness watch. The Active 2 is lighter than the Galaxy Watch which is ideal for when you're working out or tracking your sleep!
The features themselves are rather similar, but the Active 2 has some additional features when it comes to health tracking. While the Galaxy Watch has 4 LED sensors for tracking heart-rate, the Active 2 has 8, which ensures more consistent tracking and real-time heart-rate statistics. The Active 2 also has the addition of the ECG monitor, which is able to detect irregularities in the rhythm of your heart and warn you if you could be in danger. At the time of this video, the ECG is present on the watch, but not active. It's still awaiting FDA approval, but Samsung have said this feature should be available sometime in the near future.
The extra weight and size of the Galaxy Watch means it has a bigger battery. You'll get about 3-4 days of typical use out of it, while the Active 2 is more like 2-3 days. Either way, the battery life on both of these watches are really good when compared to smartwatches from other leading brands!
Both watches feature a 360x360 resolution display which is pretty impressive on a smartwatch! The text and images look sharp and bright — super important for viewing your watch outdoors.
Both the Galaxy Watch and the Active 2 have the same IP68 waterproof rating, run Tizen OS, and come loaded with the same apps. These are both great smartwatches that work great with any Android phone, not just Samsung! They even work with iOS. The main difference you'll find when using it with iOS, is the inability to quick reply to messages from your smartwatch. Also, when you get a call, it'll use the microphone on your phone rather than the one on our smartwatch.
So what it really comes down to is what you're looking to get out of a smartwatch. If you're looking for something that is predominantly for tracking your fitness and health, but still has the nice smartwatch features like being able to receive calls and notifications on it, then we'd recommend you try out the Active 2. It is a bit pricier but you do get extra features in a smaller package!
The Galaxy Watch, the other hand, delivers all of your notifications and information from your phone while looking much more stylish. It still has the fitness features such as tracking steps and heart-rate but is a little heavy on the wrist for gym workouts, and bulky to wear while you sleep (if you want to track your sleep). It's also a little cheaper.
All in all, Samsung is among the top of the smartwatch game and we'd happily recommend either of these models to anyone looking to extend their productivity and health! Unless you live and breathe health and fitness, the Galaxy Watch will give you all that you need out of a smartwatch. If fitness and health tracking is a key priority for you though, Active 2 is worth the extra investment.