Samsung has just added a health focused smartwatch and fitness tracker to its Galaxy lineup.
Essential reading: Top fitness trackers and health gadgets
All of this was revealed at today’s Samsung Unpack 2019 event in San Francisco. The star of the show, of course, was its flagship smartphone, the Galaxy S10. We also saw the release of the flexible Galaxy Fold, Bluetooth Galaxy Buds and the 5G version of the S10.
The fitness focused wearables made their appearance in the latter part of the event. However, almost everything about the devices was leaked in the run-up to the gathering. It seemed like every other day a picture or specs on the watch would appear somewhere online. Even Samsung was guilty of this, having managed to leak pics of the fitness devices in their own smartphone app!
Galaxy Watch Active
But it’s all finally official. The successor to the Gear Sport is a sportier take on the Galaxy Watch. The stylish device is smaller than its predecessor and lighter (25 grams) thanks to a new type of aluminum. A company spokesperson even compared its weight to a single strawberry! The swappable strap has been redesigned using a soft durable material and the whole thing is 5 ATM water resistant.
As expected, the slick looking timepiece sports an AMOLED touchscreen that is smaller by 0.1 inch compared to the Gear Sport. They both have two buttons on the right but the recessed side buttons look better now as they are more rounded in shape. There’s only a 40mm size option and you’ll notice that the trademark bezel is gone. Users will need to navigate the device via the touchscreen and physical buttons.
As mentioned, this is primarily a fitness focused tool. It will monitor the standard gamut of metrics thanks to a built-in heart rate sensor, accelerometer and gyroscope. Around the clock stress tracking is on this list and, more interestingly, so is blood pressure monitoring.
This last feature will be enabled on March 15th in five countries (US, UK, Canada, Singapore, Australia, and Germany), courtesy of an optional research app developed jointly with the University of California, San Francisco. This is not something we’ve not seen before so it will be interesting to see how (and how well), it performs as a blood pressure monitor. Apparently, taking a reading will require a 20-30 second scanning process.
The watch can track 39 different workouts, all with daily goals and progress monitoring. There’s auto-activity recognition for some of these.
In terms of hardware, the Tizen-based device is equipped with the same dual core Exynos 9110 processor as the Galaxy Watch. There’s 728MB of RAM, 4GB of storage, assisted GPS/Glonass location support and a 236mAh battery with Qi wireless charging. There’s no LTE version of the device but users will benefit from NFC for payments on-the-go.
Pre-orders for the Galaxy Active begin on February 21st on Amazon in a choice between silver, black, rose gold, or sea green. The timepiece will start shipping from March 8th.
The Galaxy Fit includes many of the same fitness features as the smartwatch, but in the form of a band. The successor to the Gear Fit range comes with a 0.95 inch curved AMOLED touchscreen, NFC, 5 ATM water resistance and a week’s worth of battery life.
The band has the fitness side of things pretty well covered thanks to a heart rate monitor, accelerometer and gyroscope, the same sensors you’ll find in the Galaxy Active. The thing will track workouts from a list of over 90 activities, and will keep tabs on heart rate, sleep, stress and more. Users will also get notifications and a few other smart features.
Samsung has not revealed the price or release date of the Galaxy Fit outside of a Q2 2019 launch. Some news outlets have mentioned a $99.99 price-tag and May 31st availability date. This is unofficial, though.
A cheaper version, the Galaxy Fit e is also set to make an appearance. It uses a a 0.74-inch PMOLED panel and makes certain performance sacrifices.
“The Galaxy Watch Active and the Galaxy Fit track your exercise, your sleep and everything in between,” Elina Vives, head of marketing for computing, smartwatches, audio and VR at Samsung Electronics America, said today at the reveal event.
“They include heart rate monitors and offer continuous stress tracking to keep you calm when life gets overwhelming. Your body is a delicate ecosystem; that’s why our ecosystem helps you take care of it. This entire line of new wearables has been designed to work seamlessly together, and with all of your Samsung products.”
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