The Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 differs from the previous model with its touch screen edges that simulate a rotating ring and navigate the interface. To know what this connected watch is worth, here is our complete test.
Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2
1.2 inches, 1.4 inches
Gorilla Glass DX +
|Definition of the screen||
360 x 360 pixels
|Heart Rate Sensor||
|Ambient light sensor||
This test was made from a model loaned by Samsung
Compliments to blush
In just under a month of use, the Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 around my wrist has attracted a lot of positive feedback from my loved ones. I got classics " bshe shows »And« tvery pretty watch that you have there. "But also to the flatterer"you're fine ". In addition, a friend who noticed that I received notifications on the knockout told me the following: " it's a round apple watch? It's way better than the square format! "
You'll understand, the Galaxy Watch Active 2 makes its small effect thanks to its very successful design. The only negative point was about the golden color of the model we had in test that is apparently not to everyone's taste. Personally, I must admit to appreciate this color on the steel cladding. A question arises therefore: why connected watch arouses so many compliments?
Well for that, even if the words I'm about to write seem straight out of an uninspired advertising, the Galaxy Watch Active 2 finds a tasty balance between elegance and sobriety. I told you it would not be the most inspired comment, but it sums up perfectly the overall impression left on me by Samsung's smartwatch.
I will specify here that I tested the watch in its format 44 mm which suited my wrist yet thin. I asked the opinions of other men and women and people with forearms even finer than mine told me they would see themselves wearing a smaller model. We can imagine that the case in its 40 mm version would be better.
As on the Galaxy Watch Active's first name, I regret a little the thickness of the borders around the display area. That said, I am this time less frustrated, because these same borders have a real use on the Watch Active 2 since they act as rotating bezel. We will come back to this later in this test. Apart from that, the two physical buttons Home and Back on the wafer do not disturb the homogeneity of the product.
Finally, as regards the bracelets, the watch uses a standard system to fix the straps, so you can choose the fasteners that suit you best. Personally, the model tested here was delivered with a brown leatherette strap that goes well with the case. In terms of comfort, I have no complaints: I took the Galaxy Watch Active 2 in many walks during this month of use and it never bothered me.
It is also good to emphasize the weight of the watch vary as shown below.
Model 44 mm (without bracelet):
- 42 grams of stainless steel;
- 30 grams of aluminum.
40 mm model (without bracelet):
- 37 grams of stainless steel;
- 26 grams of aluminum.
The watch is waterproof by its IP68 and 5ATM certifications and can be dive up to 50 meters deep.
An effective screen
For the Galaxy Watch Active 2 screen, you can count on a very well-groomed AMOLED. The diagonal is 1.4 or 1.2 inches depending on the version chosen between the 40 and 44 mm housing. Overall, I never really had a hard time distinguishing what was displayed.
In the worst case, the brightness can be set as you like in the watch settings and even from the shortcuts panel. For the definition, we are entitled to 360 x 360 pixels.
At this stage of writing the test, I still have to confess to having experienced a small accident. Walking on an unstable stone, I lost my balance and after a sudden gesture of the arm, the screen of the watch struck a high stone. The impact was not violent at all, but it was enough to leave a mini notch on the upper part of the glass. On the one hand, I had some doubts about the strength of the Gorilla Glass DX + slab, but on the other I think I hit the rock pile at a sharp spot, thus promoting the crack.
Intuitive and fluid interface
The Galaxy Watch Active 2 is a remake of the Galaxy Watch Active. After all, the recipe worked very well on the first model. However, as I briefly mentioned a little earlier, the borders of the dial of the watch are used this time to navigate the interface just by touching.
In the vast majority of cases, I found this novelty very practical. The rotating physical ring of the Galaxy Watch was one of his great qualities and on this Watch Active 2 we find more or less this good idea. Be careful, at first, the gesture may not come very intuitively.
At least, that was the case for me. Quite stupidly, I wanted to use this feature just like the physical telescope of the Galaxy Watch by putting my thumb and index finger on the borders to scroll the menu. These tests were not very conclusive. Dragging just one finger around the screen is enough to interact with the knockout.
Once the gesture is mastered, everything rolls like clockwork. The only thing that grieved me from time to time was the fact that scrolling the menu was sometimes a little too fast. It's perfect for navigating from the home screen to notifications or widgets, but to scroll through a list without going too fast, the touch screen was too sensitive and therefore less relevant.
Apart from this novelty, we find the One UI interface based on Tizen 4.0. Samsung perfectly masters its home solution whose use is ultimately very simple. From the main dial, go to the left to access notifications and right to find applications and widgets that you can customize, add or delete with a lot of freedom.
The Exynos 91110 embedded inside the Galaxy Watch Active 2 is associated with 758 MB of RAM and 4 GB of storage to propel the connected watch with a lot of fluidity. Bluetooth pairing with the smartphone is fast enough and the Galaxy Store is full of applications to enrich your experience.
With a swipe from the top of the screen to the center, you'll see the shortcut panel that gives you access to the settings, the water lock that makes the screen non-touch, the Watch always on feature, and 'Airplane and Power Saving modes or brightness adjustment, ringer options or flashlight.
To customize your dial, the base catalog is not particularly provided, but you can easily download one from the Galaxy Store. Finally, when you receive a message (SMS, Messenger, WhatsApp …), several pre-prepared answers are suggested, but you can also decide to answer the voice for a relatively effective transcription.
As for the vibrations of notifications, they are very moderate so as not to shake your wrist. Remember to filter the alerts you want to receive in order to avoid too much stress. Finally, thanks to the NFC, you can take advantage of Samsung Pay. Assistant Bixby is also here if you're interested.
The activity tracking is still as effective on the Galaxy Watch Active 2 that does not shame his predecessors. GPS is effective, as is the heart rate monitor or sleep tracking.
When you stay idle for too long, a little message invites you to move a little bit to stay healthy.
The watch automatically detects when you make a physical effort, displays encouraging messages that are pleasing and time your exercise.
In this regard, this is where the Galaxy Watch Active 2 was clumsy. The accelerometer (and perhaps also the gyroscope) seems to pack a little too easily.
Once taking a bus that was traveling at an average of 80 or 90 km / h, the watch encouraged me to continue my effort while sitting. However, the most incongruous behavior occurred when I drank beers with friends without moving an inch of my chair. After two or three pints, the Galaxy Watch Active 2 interpreted that I was playing sports and congratulated myself. It happened a second time, in the same situation, a week later.
This is still several occurrences and we can not really assume that this is an exceptional error. At the same time, the activity monitoring of the connected watch has shown great reliability every other time. So, I will not blame the Galaxy Watch Active 2 for that, but I wanted to make it clear.
In addition, you can start an exercise on the watch yourself by choosing between abdominals, swimming, hiking, pilates or bench press. In all, the watch offers a good thirty different exercises.
Also remember to install the Samsung Health app on your smartphone to find all the information about your physical activity on a larger screen.
The small version of the connected watch has a battery of 247 mAh and it goes up to 340 mAh for the Samsung Watch Active 2 44 mm tested here. It is obviously on the latter that I will give you my feedback.
I ramble, but I have done many hikes in recent weeks to evaluate the endurance of the product. Overall, the Galaxy Watch Active 2 has a great endurance, very reassuring, but can fluctuate significantly depending on your use.
Thus, by chaining the days of hikes, thus frequently engaging and long follow-up activity, the watch has increased from 100 to 15% in a little more than three days. On days where I stayed in my office, autonomy was up to 4 full days to fall to 15%.
Why do I take the 15% benchmark threshold? Simply because it is from there that the connected watch proposes to switch to energy saving mode. If you decline to enable this option, it will only take a few hours overall to fall to a critical battery level.
Nevertheless, if you decide to use this feature, you will be able to hold another 24 hours more, more or less. In return, you will compose with a Galaxy Watch Active 2 devoid of applications. Energy Saver mode disables all functions "to with the exception of calls to messages and notifications ". Also, the interface goes in black and white.
A magnetic base and connected to a USB-A cable a little too short is delivered with the watch to be able to recharge it.
Making calls with a connected watch is usually an extra solution. The Watch Active 2 does not reinvent the wheel and offers a speaker that compresses enormously the voice of people on the other end of the line. We will not really be able to hold it against him. Your interlocutors, however, will enjoy better audio quality with a well-audible voice, transcribed fairly clearly even if you find yourself in a fairly noisy environment.
I have only encountered one real problem at this level. In trying to call my friend-colleague Geoffroy, I did not hear him and neither did he. He had to put me on hold and then resume the conversation so that we could discuss normally. However, everything leads to believe that it is only an isolated bug.
Price and availability
The Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 is available in France at different prices depending on the model. For the Bluetooth declination, it will cost 299 euros for the 40 mm case and 319 euros for the 44 mm case.
If you want to enjoy a connected watch 4G, the model 40 mm is selling at the recommended price of 449 euros against 469 euros for the 44 mm version.
Where to buy the Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 at the best price?