The new Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 is one of those smartwatches that I really enjoy using and reviewing. I have reviewed the Galaxy Fit before this and I feel that it was a really good entry level smartwatch, or rather, fitness watch to have. But the Galaxy Watch Active 2 is a whole another level. Here’s why.
First of all, the look and feel of the Galaxy Watch Active 2 is more refined and elegant. It looks more like a luxury smartwatch given the watch faces that comes with it looks sharp and professional. It also comes with a leather strap which add exclusiveness to the watch. Of course you can opt to swap the strap with another type using the quick release pin. There are many other types you can buy from Samsung.
The Galaxy Watch Active 2 comes in two sizes, 40mm and 44mm. My review unit is the 40mm aluminum version but don’t let the material fool you. It feels really light and solid, at times I don’t even feel like it is strapped on my wrist.
On the front is a round Super AMOLED screen which displays high contrast colours that looks stunning even under direct sunlight. On the older Galaxy watches, there is the rotating dial ring on the outer part of the front face where you can turn and select the items on the menu.
With the new Galaxy Watch Active 2 however, the dial is missing. But you can still use your finger to touch around the outer part of the watch face to navigate through the menu. A simple upgraded modification that made the Active 2 a lot more futuristic.
On the right side of the watch, there are two buttons and a microphone hole The buttons are for selecting a menu and a back/home button. Also you can long press on the home button to turn the watch on and off. On the left side you can see the speaker grille. You can talk to the watch for Bixby assist if you like and Bixby will reply you via the watch too, hence the speaker.
At the back, you can see the heartbeat sensor. I configured the watch to measure my heartbeat every 30 minutes and the statistics can be seen on the Samsung Health app on my phone. As usual, I wear the watch to monitor my sleep pattern as well.
Usage and Specifications
I don’t do a lot of running with the Active 2. One reason is because it came with a leather strap and being a review unit, I don’t want to leave to much (sweat) stain on it. No swimming with it either although I am tempted to. But yes, you can wear the Galaxy Watch Active 2 for swimming as long as you don’t use it for any dangerous water sport or deep sea diving.
Now here’s a little bit info on the specs. The Active 2 has an Exynos 9110 dual-core chipset, the same as its predecessor and the original Galaxy Watch – but at 1.15Ghz, it’s fast enough. The smartwatch’s 768MB of RAM is fine for switching in and out of apps, though that is upgraded to 1.5GB for the LTE model.
That’s enough power to zoom around the interface. I do wish that Samsung can add more than 4GB of internal space in the Active 2 – especially since, once the operating system and baseline apps have been loaded up, you’re left with 1.5GB to fiddle with. 1.5GB is still enough to add in some music but having more is better since we can actually install additional apps in the Active 2.
Other than that, the Galaxy Watch Active 2 is very snappy and buttery smooth when it comes to navigating around in the menu.
As for the watch faces, there are so many options you can choose from the Galaxy Store. I actually spent hours browsing through the watch faces to see which one I should use. I ended up changing the watch face once every 3-4 hours or so, just for the heck of it.
It also comes with a 350mAh battery and it can last for about 2 days before I need to charge it up again. And it’s using a wireless Qi charger where you can also use your Galaxy phone to charge the watch wirelessly. Just make sure you have the power sharing function on your phone. Most flagship Samsung phones has this, including my Galaxy S10e.
Since I have tried the Galaxy Fit before this, I feel that the Galaxy Watch Active 2 is a huge upgrade from the Fit. If you’re looking for a first smartwatch, you can opt for the Galaxy Fit for its simplicity. But if have some extra cash to splurge, the Galaxy Watch Active 2 is a good smartwatch to have.
My personal opinion? Galaxy Watch Active 2 is an example of Samsung’s fine innovative improvements in wearable technology, making it feels light and simpler but yet so powerful with intuitive features.
I’m not saying, go buy the Galaxy Watch Active 2 right now but it’s more like I’m saying, it has the best function and features in a smartwatch at this moment.
The Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 is available from Samsung right now and the retail price starts from RM1,099.00.