Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 Classic review

Asia's Tech News Daily

Two-minute review

Alongside the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4, at its August Unpacked event Korea’s biggest tech company also introduced the world to the Galaxy Watch 4 Classic, a super-premium smartwatch with the standard model’s software, but with some key hardware changes designed to make it a more tempting proposition for discerning customers with deep enough pockets.

Jump to

Release date and price
Design and display
Performance and software
Battery life
Should you buy the Watch 4 Classic?

The big change here is the presence of a physical rotating bezel – you can easily navigate through menus or pages simply by twisting this, and it’s one of the watch’s best features, especially because the ‘virtual bezel’ on the standard Watch 4, which requires you to stroke the edges of the screen to interact with the device, doesn’t work too well.

This also gives the Galaxy Watch 4 Classic a more premium appearance, with a chunky ring around the display that more closely resembles the design of classic wristwatches. It also gives the wearable added protection against everyday knocks and bumps, which for clumsy people (like this reviewer) is super-useful.

So why have we only given the Galaxy Watch 4 Classic three-and-a-half stars, when its non-classic equivalent got four? Well, the design upgrades aren’t quite enough to excuse some issues in key areas, which made the overall experience of using the watch a muddled affair.

Our main issue, one that would be written in red pen and followed by ‘see me after class’ if this were a school report, would be the watch’s battery life – it regularly struggled to make it through a single day of use. If we were using it for the very tasks that are the whole point of a device like this, such as fitness tracking and viewing notifications, we’d have to charge it twice a day to keep it going.

Workout controls could be quite fiddly too – it can take several seconds to stop the wearable timing an exercise, and lost seconds like that can be irritating for people who want to keep a close eye on their fitness metrics.

(Image credit: Future)

The price is also very high for a smartwatch, especially when you can buy a feature-packed wearable from a company like Fitbit, Honor or Garmin for a much lower price.

That’s not to say the Watch 4 Classic is terrible; its design and display are some of the best we’ve seen. We just can’t say that the few positives outweigh all the negatives.

Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 Classic price and availability

There are a few versions of the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 Classic, depending on whether you want 4G or Bluetooth connectivity, a 42mm or 46mm screen (which has an effect on the battery life), or a black or silver body (this doesn’t affect price).

Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 Classic prices
Size Connectivity US price UK price AU price
42mm Bluetooth $349 £349 $549
42mm LTE $399 £389 $649
46mm Bluetooth $379 £369 $599
46mm LTE $429 £409 $699

The table above shows you the prices for the different configurations available – for context, the Galaxy Watch 4, which is available in 40mm and 44mm sizes, starts at $249.99 / £249 / AU$399 and goes up to $329.99 / £309 (about AU$580).

That’s a lot for a smartwatch, especially given that there are plenty of feature-packed rivals costing a third of the price, although it’s worth pointing out that the starting price for the Apple Watch 7 is slightly higher.

Design and display

The Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 Classic consists of the main body and interchangeable bands – although we found it a little tricky to change the bands on this device compared to other watches, due to their small levers, so your mileage might vary.

The strap in the box is made from fluoroelastomer, a silicon-like material that can be a little comfier than the rubber some smartwatch bands are made out of, and can also be a little less of an irritant, which is important for people with skin conditions.

(Image credit: Future)

The watch comes in silver or black finishes – your choice will determine the color of the straps in the box, as well as the body and bezel of the watch.

Unlike on most other watches, where you can adjust the angle of the strap relative to the body, on the Watch 4 Classic (and the standard Watch 4), the straps can only protrude perpendicularly from the sides of the body, which results in a sizable gap between the strap and your wrist on either side of the body; you can see this issue in the image of the standard Watch 4 below – and we’d consider our wrists to be pretty average-sized.

As a result we found the Galaxy Watch a little uncomfortable to wear, although depending on your wrist size you might not have the same experience. It’s also quite a thick watch, which makes it hard to wear with tighter clothing, and uncomfortable in bed.

The watch body is made of stainless steel, and it feels sturdy, partly because of this material and partly because of the raised bezel ring around the screen, which protects the display from knocks and bumps.

There are two buttons on the watch, both on the right edge – the top one takes you back to the home screen, and the bottom one can be held down during workouts to pause tracking (we’ll discuss the fitness features in more detail later).

(Image credit: Future)

The bezel is the key differentiator between the Watch 4 Classic and the standard Watch 4, which has a ‘virtual bezel’, although some of Samsung’s previous ‘standard’ wearables have had a physical bezel. This rotates, and can be used as a way to navigate the smartwatch – in fact, it quickly became our chosen way to zoom between menus, rather than swiping, which can be fiddly while you’re walking or if you don’t have the steadiest hands. It’s likely the main reason you’d consider opting for the Classic over the standard model.

The display on the watch is 42mm across if you opt for the 42mm version and 46mm if you opt for the 46mm model – that might sound obvious, but it’s worth clarifying that the size refers to the display, and not the body as a whole.

The display is one of the best we’ve seen on a smartwatch, with bold colors and high max brightness, making it easy to view both in glaring daylight and when we raised our wrist to glance at it while on a run.

Performance and software

Alongside the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4, the Classic marks the debut of Wear OS 3.0, which has been created as a collaboration between Google and Samsung for this series of watches and will be used on other devices too.

This software brings lots of upgrades over the previous build of Wear OS. There are more tiles that you can easily navigate between using the rotating bezel, so you can easily jump to music controls, workout tracking modes or the heart rate monitor.

(Image credit: Future)

This super-useful tiles list did make the app list almost redundant, as jumping through the hoops to bring this up took much longer than just twisting the bezel the required amount. But there are some functions, like timers or alarms, that we still accessed via the app list from time to time.

The lack of names on apps in the app list makes things a little confusing too: the Timer, Stopwatch and Alarm apps all have icons that are just clocks, so it can be hard knowing which to select if you want one of these tools.

Other than with the bezel, navigation is done by swiping from the home watch face. If you swipe in from the left, you get the notifications menu, pulled from your phone. Swiping down from the top brings up the settings menu, which includes a really useful option that we used a lot called ‘Theatre Mode’ which silenced notifications and turned off raise-to-wake for a set amount of time, making it perfect for watching a movie. We’d like to see more wearables get a mode like this.

Swiping up from the bottom brings up the app menu, and swiping in from left lets you navigate between the tiles – you probably won’t find yourself doing this one much though, as you can do the same thing with the rotating bezel.

There’s a long list of watch faces to choose from, and you can also customize these by changing the complications, using your own photo, moving the clock and so on. You can do this from the watch itself, but given how fiddly that can be on a small screen, we found it easier to use the Galaxy Wearable smartphone app instead.

(Image credit: Future)

At this point it’s wort noting that you have to install not one but two Samsung apps, because you have to install both the Galaxy Wearable and Samsung Health apps on your smartphone, and you’ll need these in order to make full use of your Watch 4 Classic. In addition to the aforementioned customization options, they enable you to log your fitness metrics and get more details about your workouts. It’s just a shame that you need to switch between the apps for different tasks, rather than having all the information and tools that you need in one.


The Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 Classic has three core fitness modes that are easy to access from the main device menu. There’s walking, running and cycling, as well as 10 more in a secondary menu which includes swimming, circuit training and gym workouts, and you can add lots more from the Samsung Health app.

The watch tracks your location while you’re working out via GPS, and also records time, speed, elevation, heart rate, heart rate, calories burnt and more. It breaks down these metrics into splits per kilometer.

Well, the app breaks down the splits by kilometer, and measures your distances in metric. However the watch itself showed us distance in miles, an imperial unit. This was very confusing – especially before we became aware of the discrepancy – and we couldn’t find a way to change it.

(Image credit: Future)

Talking of things we couldn’t find a way to change, at the end of every ‘lap’ or mile, the watch will interrupt any music you’re listening to as a voice reels off a list of your metrics, including time, distance and heart rate. This could take quite a while, and if you were listening to music via the same phone it’d play over that (or interrupt a spoken-word podcast). We couldn’t find a way to stop this happening, either in the settings of the watch or in the apps.

Overall, we found running data to be pretty accurate, especially in terms of distance and heart rate when compared to a few other fitness trackers. Time could be a little iffy though, and that’s because the workout controls are quite fiddly, which resulted in us wasting seconds every time we tried to pause the tracking as we were waiting to cross a road.

You can pause a run by holding the lower button, or by swiping in from the left side and pressing ‘Pause’ – both of these options take at least a second, which can really add up if you’re running in a busy area, and can cause the time to be inflated compared to on a smartwatch with a simple single-tap pause option.

Moreover, these methods only work if you’re already looking at the workout metrics screen. This in turn is dependent on raise-to-wake accurately working when you’re on a run – it doesn’t always – and if you’re on another watch face – for example if you’ve been skipping music or checking navigation – you have to reopen the workout face to access the pause option. All these seconds add up.

If manually tracking workouts can be a little bit frustrating, the Watch 4’s automatic walk monitoring is surprisingly useful. When you’ve been walking for 10 minutes without turning on the walk tracking mode, the watch jumps into it automatically, providing you useful extra information you wouldn’t have otherwise collected about your health.

(Image credit: Future)

We didn’t test every Galaxy Watch 4 Classic fitness mode, but we tried some like Squats and Sit-Ups, and found them a little bit hit-and-miss. When doing squats, the watch would sometimes fail to register a repetition – we’d estimate this happened once or twice per set of 10, and it was the same with sit-ups. It’s a little annoying, but if you’re okay with having to do an extra crunch or squat you can look past it.

There were times for each of those workouts, though, where the watch just refused to pick up any reps, and we couldn’t work out why.

An intriguing new mode here is body composition scanning, which tells you things like your body fat percentage, your body water percentage and your BMI. This obviously isn’t as accurate as proper machinery for scanning these things, but it’s impressive that a smartwatch can scan for these things.

There’s no perfect smartwatch when it comes to fitness tracking, and the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 Classic is by no means the worst we’ve tested – in fact, it’s one of the better ones we’ve used for many types of workouts, despite the aforementioned inaccuracies. But the fiddly workout controls and audio announcements can make it irritating to use.

Battery life

(Image credit: Future)

The Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 Classic’s battery life is, without a shadow of a doubt, its worst feature. While the standard model lasts about two days between charges, based on our review time, in our testing we’d estimate that the Classic lasts less than a single day before running out of charge.

That’s an absolutely abysmal performance, which somehow manages to make the one-day-life Apple Watch look good in comparison. For context, an average smartwatch lasts about two weeks between charges, and some can go a month or even longer before needing to be powered.

Our average day would include about an hour of fitness tracking, some music streaming, picking up the occasional message, and frequent heart rate monitoring. With all this, we’d estimate that the watch would last between about 20 and 22 hours before needing to be charged – we got into the habit of charging the device twice per day, once at work in the morning and again in the evening before bed, to ensure that it wouldn’t run out of juice.

That’s a dramatically sub-par performance, and we’d deem it a major red flag for potential buyers.

Charging is a pad that connects to a USB-C outlet. It’s not fast charging – it takes about two hours to power the watch up to full, which is baffling given the short battery life.

Should I buy the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 Classic

(Image credit: Future)

Buy it if…

Your watches tend to suffer from knocks and scrapes
With a stainless steel body and big, protective bezel, we found the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 Classic could easily withstand the occasional bump and knock.

You have trouble navigating smartwatches
The rotating bezel is a fantastic feature for navigation, especially if you find smartwatch screens too small or fiddly to easily navigate on.

You want to monitor your body composition
We found the body composition features fascinating to use, (even though the feedback was often a little dismaying for our post-lockdown fitness level!). If you want to find out things like your body water or skeletal muscle, it’s a useful mode.

Don’t buy it if…

You want a watch that can last a full day without charging
The Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 Classic only lasted a whole day of use between chargers if we modified our behaviour to enable it to do so, for example by taking it off for periods, or putting it into battery-saver mode.

You’re on a budget
This isn’t a smartwatch for people with a limited budget – not unless you find it at a particularly great discount in the sales. Check out the non-Classic version instead.

You care about workout timings
We often racked up lots of extra seconds on runs from trying to wrestle with the workout controls. If you need your timings to be as accurate as possible, buy a dedicated running watch instead.

First reviewed October 2021

Internet Explorer Channel Network
Asia's Tech News Daily
News Related


Google Removes Malware Apps That Stole Banking Logins On Android

Google –Alphabet Inc Class A (NASDAQ:GOOGL)– has removed a group of apparently inoffensive apps, which in truth were malware used to steal Android users’ banking logins. According to experts who ... Read more »

Spotify Wrapped 2021: What were your most listened to artists

What was or were your most listened to artists on Spotify this year? December has already begun, and with the month of Christmas comes all the counts and memories of ... Read more »

Mathematicians hail breakthrough in using AI to suggest new theorems

Their work examined knot theory and representation theory, areas of "pure mathematics" which typically depend on human intuition for breakthroughs. Read more »

Misinformation fuelled by ‘tsunami' of poor research, says science prize winner

Photograph: Amy Osborne/AFP/Getty Images Dutch microbiologist Elisabeth Bik, winner of prestigious John Maddox prize, says trust in science is being undermined A “tsunami” of poor quality research is fuelling misinformation ... Read more »

A RISC-V Raspberry Pi rival is about to hit the market

Shanghai-based StarFive has announced a new single-board computer (SBC) based on the RISC-V architecture, which is being touted as the spiritual replacement for the cancelled BeagleV. StarFive hails the upcoming ... Read more »

Microsoft is launching a whole new version of Teams

Microsoft is making it even easier for small businesses to use its video conferencing software and online collaboration tool with the launch of the first ever stand-alone version of Microsoft ... Read more »

Liam Gallagher reacts to Oasis tribute band being trapped in pub due to snow: ‘I'm jealous'

Liam Gallagher reacts to Oasis tribute band being trapped in pub due to snow: ‘I’m jealous’ Liam Gallagher has reacted to the news that an Oasis tribute band have been ... Read more »

Former UK chancellor says the Queen asked him to tell Obama to leave a state banquet because she wanted to go to bed

Queen Elizabeth II and then-President Barack Obama in the Music Room of Buckingham Palace ahead of a 2011 state banquet.Chris Jackson/AFP via Getty Images George Osborne said the Queen once ... Read more »

Sheridan Smith is ‘lucky to be alive' after ‘crashing car into tree'

Sheridan Smith is “lucky to be alive” after being involved in an car crash, it’s been reported. It’s being claimed that the actor and singer was driving her Range Rover ... Read more »

UK weather: More snow forecast as temperatures plunge again

People walk along a road in Buxton after Storm Arwen, Buxton, Derbyshire, Britain, November 29, 2021. (REUTERS) Snow is forecast across parts of England and Scotland over the next four ... Read more »

Strictly Come Dancing's Rhys Stephenson Defends Host Tess Daly Over 'Crying' Comments

Rhys Stephenson and Tess Daly (Photo: BBC) Strictly Come Dancing star Rhys Stephenson has defended the show’s host Tess Daly over comments she made about him crying on last week’s ... Read more »

Spotify Wrapped 2021 has now arrived - here's how to access it

It’s that time of the year again – Spotify Wrapped has finally arrived. Each year Spotify’s round-up of music tastes seems to take over social media for a few days, ... Read more »

The CDC orders airlines to reveal identities of travelers who have recently visited southern Africa

Passengers gather near Delta airline’s counter as they check-in their luggage at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, in Atlanta, Georgia, U.S., May 23, 2021.Reuters/Carlos Barria The CDC ordered airlines to share ... Read more »

Hackers are guessing your credit card details - and there's nothing you can do about it

Cybersecurity researchers have revealed hackers have discovered a way to find card numbers without breaking into a database, and there’s also a booming underground black market for them. Researchers at ... Read more »

Cheapest AirPods prices: Best UK deals on the pro and all-new 3rd gen earbuds in December

The headphones from the tech-giant have a ‘heightened level of finesse’ (iStock/The Independent) Cast your mind back to the middle of 2010, when Bluetooth headphones were slowly but surely entering ... Read more »

Southampton vs Leicester live stream: how to watch Premier League on Amazon Prime and abroad

Having lost two games on the spin, and now just three places above the drop zone, Saints boss Ralph Hasenhuttl will be hoping his side can get back to winning ... Read more »

Debt collectors can now send you DMs on social media, but they must comply with certain rules

Debt collectors have a variety of ways to contact you, and the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau added a new way for them to reach you: social media. Don’t worry, debt ... Read more »

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscribers will get monthly Halo Infinite bonuses

Microsoft has revealed that subscribers to the Ultimate tier of its Xbox Game Pass service will get access to monthly bonuses in Halo Infinite’s multiplayer. In a blog post covering ... Read more »

West Ham vs Brighton live stream: how to watch Premier League on Amazon Prime and abroad

Two of the top flight’s big overachievers face off in a mouthwatering midweek Premier League match today. Read on as our guide explains how to get a West Ham vs ... Read more »

You can get 30% off everything at Adidas right now—but only through tonight

— Recommendations are independently chosen by Reviewed’s editors. Purchases you make through our links may earn us a commission. There are plenty of deals for Three Stripes fanatics this Cyber ... Read more »

A 19-year-old was shot in an attempted robbery while trying to sell a PlayStation 5, the latest indication of how high demand remains for the game console

A man puts a boxed PlayStation 5 game console into a bag.CHARLY TRIBALLEAU/AFP via Getty Images In Texas, a 19-year-old man was shot on Sunday while attempting to sell a ... Read more »

Best iPad deals 2021

We’re seeing some of the best iPad deals hitting the internet this month, so what better time to grab a cheap iPad tablet? But with so many retailers offering serious savings, ... Read more »

Microsoft's Adaptive Kit for making Surface devices more accessible is now out

Microsoft’s Surface Adaptive Kit, which is designed to make Surface devices more accessible to everyone, is now available to purchase at the company’s online store. The kit is a bunch ... Read more »

PS5 UK stock live: Today's restock news from Currys and BT

It has now been over a year since Sony’s latest console, the PlayStation 5 (PS5), first arrived in the UK. But supply problems and a worldwide semiconductor shortage sparked by ... Read more »

Python could soon rival JavaScript for web applications

There’s a new project that’ll reportedly enable the Python programming language to run within web browsers with the help of WebAssembly. The CPython on WASM project, which will build the ... Read more »

Religious communities can make the difference in winning the fight against climate change

All major religions call on their followers to respect the Earth. Takver/Wikimedia The threat of climate change signals a “code red for humanity”, and we are running out of time ... Read more »

The creator of the iPod says products are designed all wrong these days

Tony Fadell, inventor of the Apple iPod and smart thermostat Nest, has said he believes too many companies approach product design with the wrong priorities. During a panel at Slush ... Read more »

Black Friday and Cyber Monday online spending falls - but holiday season records are still broken

Online spending on Black Friday and Cyber Monday was down this year for the first time. That’s according to data from Adobe Analytics, which shows that the extended sales period ... Read more »

2021 was the year of the metaverse, but it will be years before it's a reality

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announces the company’s future plans for the metaverse during the company’s Connect keynote. (Image: Facebook) This article was first featured in Yahoo Finance Tech, a weekly ... Read more »

How Ideal Standard revolutionised the modern bathroom

© Ideal Standard Combining heritage and innovation, British bathroom brand Ideal Standard is the master of reinvention. From the first one-piece bathtub to the rimless toilet, Ideal Standard has long ... Read more »

Watford vs Chelsea live stream: how to watch Premier League on Amazon Prime and abroad

League leaders Chelsea face a Watford team that’s grown increasingly enthralling by the week, equally adept at scintillating attacking play and calamitous defending. Read on as our guide explains how ... Read more »

Aston Villa vs Man City live stream: how to watch Premier League on Amazon Prime and abroad

Jack Grealish’s return to his boyhood club is the overarching subplot of a game that’s brimming with them, and a resurgent Aston Villa will be hoping to make it as ... Read more »

Why increased rainfall in the Arctic is bad news for the whole world

A rainy day in Baffin Island, northern Canada. Petr Kahanek / shutterstock Before the end of this century, most of the Arctic will for the first time receive more rain ... Read more »

One in four UK birds now on endangered species red list due to habitat loss and climate change

A pair of nesting house martin chicks. Paulpixs/Shutterstock The red list of Britain’s most endangered birds now stands at 70 species – virtually double the number it held in 1996. ... Read more »

Variations in Earth's orbit have affected biological evolution, study finds

The scientists also propose that the impact on microscopic algae could have been a major driver in ancient climate change events, but caution that this hypothesis is unproven. Read more »

The cheapest Samsung Galaxy S9 unlocked SIM-free prices in December 2021

Samsung Galaxy S9 Fact File Release date: March 9 2018 Launch price: $719 / £739 / AU$1,199 Platform: Android 8 Oreo Storage: 64GB Camera: 12MP / 8MP Screen: 5.8-inch, 1440×2960 ... Read more »

The cheapest unlocked Samsung Galaxy S20 Plus and Ultra SIM-free prices in December 2021

Both the Samsung Galaxy S20 Plus and S20 Ultra SIM-free unlocked are the perfect example to show that we’ve well and truly entered the world of expensive Android phones. Competing ... Read more »

Eruption of Vesuvius on Herculaneum ‘like Hiroshima bomb'

Archaeologist compares eruption at Roman town close to Pompeii to dropping of WW2 atomic bomb An Italian archaeologist has compared the impact of the AD79 eruption of Mount Vesuvius on ... Read more »

Science report: US should make less plastic to save oceans

The Associated PressFILE – In this Oct. 22, 2019, photo, plastic and other debris is seen on the beach on Midway Atoll in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands. America needs to ... Read more »

Heat, no food, deadly weather: Climate change kills seabirds

PORTLAND, Maine — The warming of the planet is taking a deadly toll on seabirds that are suffering population declines from starvation, inability to reproduce, heat waves and extreme weather. ... Read more »
On you will find lots of free English exam practice materials to help you improve your English skills: grammar, listening, reading, writing, ielts, toeic