Older Samsung smartwatches get One UI, battery optimization & more
A new firmware update for Samsung watches has just started rolling out. It brings the One UI interface, battery optimization and other improvements to Galaxy Watch, Gear S3 and Gear Sport.
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Samsung has started transitioning all of its software to the One UI theme last November. The company says the new interface is more intuitive and allows users to get things done with fewer finger movements. It’s also slightly easier on the eye. The interface was previously only available on Galaxy Watch Active.
As part of the redesign, Galaxy Watch and Gear watches will get a selection of new watch faces. This is in addition to gaining access to new settings such as the ability to enable and disable Touch wake-up, adjust the frequency and timings of Daily briefing updates and a better Goodnight mode control.
The update also brings improved battery optimization for better performance. New features such as automatic closing of background apps and the ability to adjust brightness and screen timeout should serve to help the watch run longer.
Users of Samsung watches have voiced complaints about battery life in the past. This update will hopefully address any remaining issues.
New health and fitness features
Most of the other changes are to do with health and fitness. There’s now a Daily Activities screen as soon as you open the Samsung Health app, streamlined workout tracking and data is now continuously synced from the watch to the smartphone app. Gear watches will also get the ability to track outdoor swimming, a feature that is already available on the Galaxy Watch.
More detailed sleep tracking and improvement heart rate monitoring are reserved for the Galaxy Watch. Similar to the Apple Watch and some Garmin smartwatches, users will now get alerts if their heart rate exceeds a preset level.
Samsung says availability of the update will vary by territory. The rollout has already started in the US and Canada, but other regions should follow soon. It bumps the software version up to R800XXU1CSE1 for Galaxy Watch and R760XXU2ESE3 and R600XXU1CSE2 for Gear S3 and Gear Sport.
The device on your wrist will alert you when the update lands. The other alternative is to do a manual check. Simply select Settings, About watch/Update Watch Software/Update now.
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