Samsung Galaxy Match Fingers-on Assessment: A $99 Health Tracker

It doesn’t price an arm and a leg to get a great, primary health tracker lately, and whereas Fitbit’s newest lineup is wanting robust, Samsung is able to put up a battle in your consideration. Its newest, the Galaxy Match, goes toe-to-toe with the Fitbit Encourage HR — each price $99 — and in my transient time with it, the Galaxy Match is more and more wanting like the higher purchase.

Slim profile, colourful show

What stands out is the zero.95-inch display that’s protected by Gorilla Glass. Certain, it’s not as huge because the 1.04-inch show on the Encourage HR, but it surely’s AMOLED, so not solely are you getting deep blacks, however there’s loads of vivid coloration. AMOLED makes the display on the Galaxy Match extra visually fascinating, and using coloration helps me to rapidly distinguish sure datasets once I’m figuring out.

I wouldn’t say the Match has the brightest display, but it surely’s adequate to learn textual content outside in direct daylight. Textual content can be sharp, due to the 120 x 240 decision.

Samsung Galaxy Fit Hands-on review

Samsung Galaxy Fit Hands-on review

Samsung Galaxy Fit Hands-on review

Samsung Galaxy Fit Hands-on review

Julian Chokkattu/Digital Traits

There isn’t an enormous collection of watch faces, however the ones accessible are fashionable. However that’s not the phrase I’d use to explain the wearable itself; it appears like a median health tracker. There’s a silver case mannequin, however I just like the all-black Galaxy Match, which is extra delicate.

I do just like the Galaxy Match’s low profile, which means it simply hides beneath a shirt cuff, and it’s so light-weight, you’ll overlook it’s in your wrist. The included silicone strap is comfy and doesn’t really feel low cost, nor does it entice an excessive amount of dust. It’s interchangeable too, and Samsung sells different strap choices so you’ll be able to customise the look.

Interface and notifications

There’s solely a single button on the Galaxy Match, so most of your interactions might be carried out through the tracker’s touchscreen. The button acts as a again button, so it can take you to the earlier display. You can too press and maintain it to begin your favourite exercise, which may be set by means of the Galaxy Wearable app.

Samsung Galaxy Fit Hands-on review Julian Chokkattu/Digital Traits

The touchscreen is responsive; I by no means had any points scrolling by means of the widgets and notifications. I do want you could possibly faucet on the display to have it gentle up, as a substitute of needing to press the button, however it is a minor gripe. For those who increase your wrist, the display will mechanically gentle up, and this works effectively.

The left aspect of the watch face is the place all of your notifications are, and the proper aspect are all of the widgets. You’ll be able to simply add and prepare widgets through the companion app, and you’ll handle the apps that ship notifications to the tracker, so that you received’t get bombarded.

It’s good to be reminded to maneuver, because it genuinely helps maintain me conscious of how a lot time I spend sitting.

I like seeing notifications on the Galaxy Match, however because the display is so small, textual content is incessantly reduce up and tough to learn. I largely used the function to have a look at the app the notification is from, and used that data to resolve whether or not I wished to achieve for my telephone to test it. You’ll be able to faucet on the notification to learn the contents (it will require a bunch of swiping), and you’ll reply with preset responses.

These responses may be custom-made by means of the app, however there’s no direct strategy to reply by means of a keyboard or by means of voice typing, not like Samsung’s Galaxy Watch and Galaxy Watch Lively smartwatches.

A swipe down from the watch face will convey you to quick-settings tiles, the place you’ll be able to toggle on Do Not Disturb, tweak the display’s brightness, and extra.

Health monitoring

The spotlight is all of the health options the Galaxy Match packs. It may possibly mechanically detect six exercises, together with operating and biking, however there are greater than 90 completely different exercises you’ll be able to monitor through the Samsung Well being app. I haven’t gone by means of a full exercise with the Match simply but, so I can’t touch upon how effectively the auto-detect operate works, or the accuracy of the health information in comparison with smartwatches just like the Apple Watch Sequence four.

Samsung Galaxy Fit Hands-on review

Samsung Galaxy Fit Hands-on review

Julian Chokkattu/Digital Traits

My two favourite options are inactivity reminders and when it mechanically detects and begins monitoring my walks after 10 minutes. It’s good to be reminded to maneuver, because it genuinely helps maintain me conscious of how a lot time I spend sitting at a desk. And once I’m strolling, the tracker will mechanically present me information like my distance, velocity, and time elapsed after 10 minutes. It additional encourages me to maintain strolling so I can probably hit my step aim.

There’s a coronary heart fee monitor as effectively, and to this point, it’s been on the mark with its outcomes. You’ll be able to set it to at all times monitor your coronary heart fee — this permits for the health tracker to ship a notification when it detects your coronary heart fee is unusually excessive whereas resting. However to preserve battery, you’ll wish to use the “Frequent” choice, which solely checks for coronary heart fee each 10 minutes if you’re not lively.

The Match’s sleep monitoring outcomes have been almost excellent.

You’ll be able to monitor your stress ranges, however each time I really feel confused, the tracker tells me I’m not. The respiratory workouts do assist calm me down, although, which additionally helps convey down my coronary heart fee.

What’s lacking? Onboard GPS. The Encourage HR doesn’t have it both. Meaning if you wish to map your runs, you’ll want your smartphone close to you. The identical applies if you wish to hearken to music, as there’s no inner storage accessible. You’ll simply must stream through your telephone.

Sleep monitoring

For those who don’t thoughts sporting a wearable to mattress, the Galaxy Match can mechanically monitor your sleep. I like taking a look at my sleep information, and I didn’t discover the Match uncomfortable, although I did loosen it a bit. The outcomes have been near excellent. It stated I used to be asleep for five hours and 56 minutes, which was solely off by a couple of minutes.

Samsung Galaxy Fit Hands-on review Julian Chokkattu/Digital Traits

Open up the Samsung Well being app, and you’ll see the information damaged down into how a lot of it was deep sleep, REM, or gentle. You can too fee your sleep to additional enrich the information.

Battery life and water resistance

The Galaxy Match has a 120mAh battery that Samsung claims will final for per week. I’ve been utilizing it extensively for the previous two days; once I took it out of the field, it was at 75%, and now it’s at 32%. I’ll must do extra testing, however I can see the health tracker simply lasting three or 4 days, with a number of exercises sprinkled in. For those who don’t work out in any respect and simply use it to trace primary health information and have a look at notifications, it could possibly final per week.

For those who’re a swimmer, you’re in luck. The Galaxy Match helps swim monitoring and is 5ATM water-resistant, so you’ll be able to take it into the pool. Professional tip: There’s a useful water lock setting you’ll be able to activate if you wish to put on your Galaxy Match within the bathe — it prevents the display from activating when water hits it.

Value and availability

The Samsung Galaxy Match prices $99, and is now accessible from Samsung’s web site and choose retailers.

Samsung’s newest tracker nails the fundamentals, and goes a step additional than the Encourage HR with a greater interface and a full-color display. It’s lacking onboard GPS and music storage, however for the informal athlete, it’s shaping as much as seem like the proper reasonably priced choice.

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