Smart WatchTech

Compare Apple Watch Series 6 and Samsung Galaxy Watch 4

This is a detailed comparison of the technical specifications between the Apple Watch Series 6 and Samsung Galaxy Watch 4.

The main differences are summarised in the following table:

Apple Watch Series 6 Samsung Galaxy Watch 4
10.7mm thick 12.7mm thick
No IP Rating IP68 Rating
32GB 16GB
18 hours per charge (~24hrs actual) 40 hours per charge (~24hrs actual)
No BIA Sensor BIA Sensor
No Hall Sensor Hall Sensor

Thickness Issue

We are irritated when Samsung listed the watch thickness “excluding sensors”, which do not make any sense. What matters is the entire thickness of the watch including sensors. When a manufacturer tries to “hide” their specifications, it normally mean that the numbers are not pretty. Thanks to PCMag, the thickness is approximately half an inch or 12.7mm.

Currently, we have used Samsung Galaxy Active Watch 2 with 13.5mm thickness measured by vernier calipers, and it does not feel thick. The reason could be due to its lightweight and rounded corners. So even though it is thicker than Apple Watch 6, the thickness may not be a major factor for some users, especially guys.

IP Rating

We feel that official IP Rating is important for any mobile devices, especially for a smartwatch which also doubles as a modern day sportswatch.

For the Samsung watch, IP68 means it is tested to be dust-tight, and can submerged long term under water for a specified duration. According to Samsung,

This means that they are water resistant to up to 50 metres in depth for 10 minutes. They are now suitable for low-velocity and shallow-water activities, including swimming. You can enjoy more freedom to explore, stay connected, and capture the adventure.

However, there is quite a big list of “Do Nots”:

●     Do not keep the device in water: 
–     for more than one hour; 
–     deeper than 10cm for more than 30 minutes; or 
–     deeper than 1.5 metres for more than 10 minutes.

●     Do not expose the device to water moving with force, such as water running from a tap, hose or shower.

The list goes on to tells us that the Samsung Watch 4 is not a rugged, military grade smartwatch. Those who are familiar with MIL-STD-810G will know it covers so much more.

Storage Size

Both watches should increase the storage space up to at least 64 GB.

Apple’s 32GB is acceptable, but Samsung need to be more than generous than just 16GB.

My antique Apple IPod bought almost 10 years ago already have 16GB.

Battery Life

According to PCMag, Apple Watch 6’s battery life outperformed their specified 18 hours. They clocked 25.5 hours in their test.

Samsung Watch 4 underperformed as it only achieved about 24 hours instead of the 40 hours claimed by Samsung.

BIA Sensor and Hall Sensor

BIA stands for Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis Sensor, which is commonly used to measure body composition by passing small electrical currents in your body. Such sensor is commonly used in measuring muscle, bone and visceral fats in body composition scale. In general, they are not highly accurate readings but they could give you an indication. You can read up more about the accuracy in our discussion about visceral fat measurement using body composition scale.

Hall sensors are used for proximity sensing, positioning, speed detection, and current sensing applications. While Samsung stated that this sensor is included on the Galaxy Watch 4, Apple’s tech specs did not mention anything about proximity or hall sensor. As this is quite a basic sensor found on most phone, we tend to believe that Apple has included this sensor in Apple Watch 6.


It appears that there may not be any Samsung Galaxy Active 3, and Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 will be new upgrade to consider for Galaxy Active 2 users.

Earlier, we selected Galaxy Active 2 over Apple Watch because it was almost half the price. Initially, Galaxy Active 2 has the hardware for ECG, blood pressure, and blood oxygen but were not activated until late 2020. It was a long wait but worth it and saved us alot of money than to buy the overpriced Apple watch.

An important point to note is that the watch has to be compatible with the phone. This means Apple IPhone users should buy Apple Watch 6, and Samsung Galaxy phone users should buy Galaxy Watch 4. So the comparison should only matter if you are going to buy the phone with the watch.

Below is the complete comparison table.

Comparison Matrix Apple Watch Series 6 Samsung Galaxy Watch 4
Tech Specs 40mm 44mm 40mm 44mm 42mm Classic 46mm Classic
Size (Watch Face) 40x34mm 44x38mm 40.4×39.3mm 44.4×43.3mm 41.5×41.5 45.5×45.5
Thickness (incl. sensor) 10.7mm 10.7mm 13.5mm 13.5mm 13.5mm 13.5mm
Weight (no strap) 30.5g (Aluminum)
39.7g (Stainless)
34.6g (Titanium)
36.5g (Aluminum)
47.1g (Stainless)
41.3g (Titanium)
26g (Alum.) 30g (Alum.) 47g (Stainless) 52g (Stainless)
Chip S6 SiP w/64-bit dual-core, W3, U1 Exynos W920 Dual Core 1.18GHz
Screen Resolution 324 by 394 pixels
759 mm2
368 by 448 pixels
977 mm2
396×396(1.2″) 450×450(1.4″) 396×396(1.2″) 450×450(1.4″)
Glass Aluminum uses Ion X Glass
Stainless & Titanium uses Sapphire Crystal
Gorilla® Glass
Gorilla® Glass DX+
Gorilla® Glass
Corning® Gorilla®
Glass DX
Always On Display Yes Yes
IP Rating No Yes, IP68 (MIL-STD-810G), 50m
Water Resistant 50m, 164ft  (ISO 22810:2010) 50m, 164ft (5 ATM) for 10 mins
Ram 1GB 1.5GB
Storage 32GB 16GB
Battery Size 265.9 mAh 303.8mAh 247 mAh 361 mAh 247 mAh 361 mAh
Battery Life Up to 18 hours (actual ~24hrs)
Up to 40 hours (actual ~24hrs)
Max Charging Wattage 5W 5W
Charging Time Approx. 1.5 hours Up to 2 hours
LTE Yes, selected models Yes, selected models
Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n 2.4 & 5GHz 802.11 a/b/g/n 2.4 & 5GHz
Bluetooth 5.0 BLE 5.0 BLE
GNSS A-GPS, Glonass, Galileo. QZSS (Jpn) A-GPS, Glonass and Galileo
NFC Yes Yes
Compass Yes Yes
Altimeter Yes Yes
Barometer Yes Yes
Light sensor Yes Yes
BIA Sensor No Yes
Blood oxygen sensor VO2Max, SpO2 VO2Max, SpO2
Electrical heart sensor Yes Yes
Optical heart sensor Yes, 3rd Gen Yes
Hall sensor No No Yes
Accelerometer Up to 32 g with fall detection Yes
Gyroscope Yes Yes
Speaker Yes Yes
Microphone Yes Yes
Payment Apple Pay Samsung Pay
Emergency Call Yes, need Phone/LTE Yes, need Phone/LTE
Emergency SOS Yes, need LTE/Phone/Wi-Fi Yes, need Phone/LTE
Fall Detection Yes Yes
Warranty (years) 1 or 2 years (depends on model) 12 months

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