Overview & Price
In this Samsung Galaxy Watch Active review 2 we go over everything you need to know about this smart watch, from its design to battery life and more.
We even showcase the best Samsung Galaxy Watch Active deals in the UK to ensure you get the best deal possible.
The Galaxy Watch Active 2 is an extremely stylish watch, which comes in either a 44mm or a smaller 40mm.
Currently priced at £279 for the 40mm or £299 for the 44m this is certainly not a cheap watch, but it does offer some impressive value for money.
The Galaxy Watch Active 2 release date was on September 27th with the UK release being shortly after on October 3rd.
The watch houses some pretty impressive features as well as a built in ECG, although this is not active currently.
With Wear OS still a little behind the times the Galaxy Watch Active 2 could be the best smart watch out there for Android users in 2019.
Lets take a closer look at what it has to offer..
Design & Display
So the first thing to note about the Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 design is that it looks rather similar to its predecessor.
However it certainly does feel a little better on the wrist as the previous model felt more plastic like.
The Watch Active 2 comes in either a 40mm version or a 44m with both options being smaller than the chunky 46mm Samsung Galaxy Watch.
Just like the original Galaxy Watch Active the body of the watch is made from either aluminium or stainless steel and comes in multiple colours.
Cloud Silver, Aqua Black, Pink and Gold are the colours that you get to choose from with this watch.
The stainless steel watch comes at a higher price and does look a little more stylish, where as the cheaper aluminium body watch is a little cheaper.
It actually feels a little like the Apple Watch Series 4 due to its rubber band, which is perfect for those that are going to be getting sweaty with the watch on.
We managed to get a hold of the Aqua Black colour to conduct this Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 review and we have to say we loved the colour and it went well with most outfits.
You will be glad to know that the Active Watch 2 is IP68 water resistant, allowing you to use the tracking features to track swims or keep it on whilst in the shower.
The Galaxy Watch Active 2 weighs in at 26g for the 40mm and 30g for the 44m, making it feel nice and light when it’s on your wrist.
On the underside of the watch you will find the heart rate monitor that actually has eight photodiodes, double the amount of its predecessor.
We did test this out and found it gave some pretty accurate ratings too, it’s a great tool combined with fitness to help lose weight.
There are also two side buttons which are used for ‘Home’ and ‘Back’, the home button can be used to bring up Samsung’s smart assistant ‘Bixby’ by simply double tapping this.
The button can be remapped to something more suitable as we typically didn’t use the Bixby feature all that much.
As a whole the Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 design is great and it does exactly what you would expect from a watch at this price point.
It doesn’t go out of its way to look like a traditional watch but also maintains a stylish look, which can be worn to the gym, or the club.
The biggest change from the previous Samsung Galaxy Watch original and Galaxy Watch Active is the touch bezel is which around the sides of the Super AMOLED display.
This is driven through software and allows you to run your finger around the edge of the bezel to select settings and because of the haptic feedback it has a satisfying click when switching through.
This makes the watch extremely easy and pleasant to navigate and really enhances the overall experience of the watch.
The Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 display has a resolution of 360 x 360, which gives enough space to view information clearly.
The OLED panel looks great with punchy colours, and thanks to the new dial it makes navigating around the display super easy.
If you wish, the watch does still allow you to swipe to navigate, which can sometimes be a little easier than using the bezel.
However it is nice to see a touch based alternative that has been done well and gives a great amount of satisfaction when doing so.
When it comes to Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 specs it has an Exynos 9110 dual-core chipset, which is the same as the previous model active watch.
Back with 768MB of RAM this combination is great for navigating through apps without any lag or stutters.
Given that this is a small device it doesn’t take much power to get this watch running at optimal speeds.
The Galaxy Watch Active 2 comes with 4GB of internal storage too, which to be honest we wish it had a little more as we could see this getting clogged up quite quickly with the installation if apps.
Once all of the pre-installed applications are loaded this actually only leaves you with 1.5GB to yourself for external apps.
This is plenty for downloading music on to the watch to get you through your gym sessions but we wouldn’t recommend downloading any chunky apps, as the storage will surely hit capacity.
The Galaxy Watch Active 2 has some impressive fitness tracking features and it can track a ton of workouts.
Around 39 in total, which include walking, cycling, running, swimming and many more.
The watch can actually auto detect swimming, so you don’t need to worry about setting the watch up before diving into the pool, it also can auto-detect hiking, cycling and more.
We watch has a built in running coach feature which you can set up so there is an audio queue either in your ear or on the speaker of the watch.
This lets you know if you are running to slow, or to fast and helps you maintain a steady pace throughout your run.
The only downside to this is that the watch uses the Bixby voice, so it does sound robotic.
As well as this if you are running a little slow, the watch will give you some short motivational speeches to keep you on track.
After your workout the watch will then give you a breakdown of your run, which includes the time it took, calories burned and how far you have ran in miles.
Combined with the new and improved heart rate monitor this watch really is a great tool to help you get in shape.
The heart rate monitor also gives you high and low heart rate detection, however you will need to have the heart rate application open to get these features.
As mentioned previously the Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 does have an ECG just like the one seen in the Apple Watch Series 4.
That being said it is not currently active in the Active 2 just yet as Samsung has not had the clearance to do so.
We have heard that Samsung are not able to give a definitive answer on when this feature will be released on the watch but we guess this is a clearance issue and should be resolved shortly.
The Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 also has sleep tracking, given that the watch is easy to sleep in this works rather well.
The feature hasn’t much changed from the previous model of Active watch but it doesn’t need to, as the sleep tracking feature has always worked great and helps you get a good night sleep when needed most.
The watch does also have stress tracking, however we found that we would rarely use this feature as it just gave us rather meaningless data.
The Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 runs from Samsung’s One UI over the top of the Tizen operating system, again nothing much has changed from its predecessor as this OS works well.
This allows you to customise your watch and add widgets if you wish, you do also get closer integration with YouTube.
We don’t really know why you would want to use YouTube videos on your phone but guess it’s a nice added feature.
The watch also gives you the option to customise the watch face based on a photo you take through the Samsung app.
You are then able to choose a matching watch face from the app, this works well when wearing particularly jazzy outfits.
The Galaxy Watch Active 2 does have an always-on display, which does what it says on the tin, and shows you battery life, the time and weather updated on your watch face.
There is also integration with Spotify too, allowing you to download music onto your watch and listen offline to your favourite songs.
If you do own a Samsung Galaxy S10 or a Samsung device with wireless power share then you are able to charge watch up using this feature, it’s a great perk of owning a Samsung device and a watch and ensures if your watch is low on juice you can top it up through your phone.
As a whole the Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 are incredibly impressive, it is jam packed full of useful features that have something for everybody.
The Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 battery life is good but it does differ depending on which sized watch you get.
The 40mm model has a 247mAh battery whilst the 44mm has a 340mAh.
This means that the larger of the two watches will last slightly longer, however it is powering a slightly larger screen so you have to make a judgment call on that one.
We can only comment on the 40mm as this is the one we had for this Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 review.
We can confidently say that you should receive around 1.5 – 2 days worth of battery life from the Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 that is with notifications turned on, fitness tracking and the occasional video.
If you are really pushing this watch hard then you will notice the battery life decreases significantly, for example if you have Spotify playing, GPS tracking and fitness tracking you will notice that the battery drains much quicker.
Overall the battery life on the Watch Active 2 is not something we had to worry about during our time with the watch, it lasted as we expected and if it did run low we would use our Samsung Galaxy S10 to top it back up again.
So should you buy the Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2?
Well if you are looking for a smart watch that has tons of impressive features and looks stylish too, then this could be the watch for you.
That being said it certainly is not a cheap watch, so it wont be for everyone. However with the lacking of Watch OS it could be a better alternative than the Samsung Galaxy Watch right now.
Design wise we actually fell in love with this watch, we could wear it to the gym and out and about too without looking out of place.
The Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 display is an OLED which gives punch and vibrant colours, and the watch now has a touch interactive bezel for easy navigating.
We love the feel of it when its on your wrist which helps with the sleep tracking features too.
The fitness tracking is great and it works well to record your workout and give you accurate data once you have finished, this can be a great tool for anyone looking to get in shape.
As a whole this Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 specs are impressive and we do feel that the value for money here is strong.
With the release of the Apple Watch Series 5 we do feel like this watch has competition, although they are in different spaces both watches are competing for a bigger share of the smart watch market.
We hope you have enjoyed our Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 review and feel free to check out the best deals in the UK at the top of this post.