Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic review: the best smartwatch for Android

By: Alex Chub | 25.09.2023, 10:34

Looking at the overall picture and range of smartwatches, Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic is undoubtedly the most functional model for Android smartphones. The gadget has a larger display, a more powerful processor, and more RAM compared to the previous line. The watch has many workout apps and a maximum set of health tracking functions, including ECG and blood pressure measurement. Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic has a nice design, stainless steel case, IP68 and MIL-STD-810H protection. And, what is especially pleasing, the beloved rotating bezel is back. The watch runs on Wear OS 4.0 with One UI Watch 5.0, has all the modern wireless interfaces, GPS, and supports contactless payment. However, compared to the previous line, there have been no dramatic changes or improvements. This is a typical evolutionary development. And, unfortunately, the battery life has not improved; with active use, the Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic lasts for a day.

5 reasons to buy the Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic:

  • stainless steel case with IP68 and MIL-STD-810H protection;
  • swivel bezel;
  • high-quality AMOLED display with increased diagonal and resolution;
  • full set of body tracking sensors and a variety of training programmes;
  • user-friendly and functional One UI Watch 5.0.

2 reasons not to buy Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic:

  • modest battery life;
  • you have a previous generation model.
  1. What's in the box?
  2. What does Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic look like?
  3. What about the screen, hardware, and controls?
  4. How user-friendly is the interface and what are the features?
  5. How long does Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic last on a single battery charge?
  6. In dry balance

What's in the box?

The packaging of Samsung smartwatches has not changed. Galaxy Watch6 Classic is packed in a small, long white cardboard box with a picture of a watch on it. Inside is the Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic, charger and documentation. The charger is similar to previous models. It's a small puck with a metal body and a plastic top. The cable is with a Type-C connector, it is fixed and cannot be replaced.


What does the Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic look like?

With the release of the Samsung Galaxy Watch5 line, there were fears that the company had decided to abandon one of the most important features of its smartwatches, the rotating bezel. Fortunately, it is back in the Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic. In general, the new lineup has slightly more compact cases, while the screens have become larger. We received a 43mm model with a 1.3-inch screen. It seemed too compact to me, a 47mm model would be more appropriate for a man's hand. The case is still made of stainless steel.

The swivel bezel has small prongs for easier rotation, and there is a black decorative bezel with markings inside. The display is slightly recessed relative to it. Thanks to this, the display has additional protection against accidental bumps. The display itself is covered with a sapphire crystal. Almost all the functional elements of the watch remain in the same places as in previous models. On the right side of the watch are two large rectangular mechanical buttons that are easy to press. In addition to interacting with the system, the buttons also serve as ECG electrodes and a bioimpedance meter for analysing the wearer's body composition. The microphone for calls and voice commands in this model is not located between the buttons, as before, but a little lower, on the bottom cover.

On the opposite side, also on the bottom cover, there are two speaker slots that point sideways. It can be used for voice calls and training. The Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic can provide relevant advice.

At the top of the smartwatch case is an opening for the atmospheric pressure sensor.

The back of the watch is made of glass and ceramic and has many functional elements. Samsung BioActive biosensors, an optical heart rate sensor and an infrared temperature sensor, and a pressure relief hole. The infrared temperature sensor is used to measure various indicators of body condition. For example, during sleep. But Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic does not have a temperature measurement function. Moreover, the measurement in such a place will not be very representative. However, the company has opened an API for the temperature sensor, so software developers can use it in their applications.

The strap mount remains the standard 20 mm, so it can be replaced with a third-party one. However, the branded one now has a button that makes it easier to remove.

The bundled strap has a standard clasp and is made of two materials. The outer one is made of eco-leather, the inner one is silicone. It is quite comfortable and pleasant to the touch.

The Samsung Classic line of smartwatches always looks stylish, and the new Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic is no exception. With the corresponding touchscreen interface, they look very much like a classic watch. The Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic is IP68 protected and can withstand 5 ATM. This allows you to take a shower and swim in freshwater. The model also meets the requirements of the military standard MIL-STD-810H.

What about the screen, hardware platform and controls?

The new models are equipped with round AMOLED displays that have a slightly larger diagonal and resolution compared to the previous line. The Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic 43 and 47 mm have 1.3-inch, 432x432 and 1.5-inch 480x480 screens, respectively. For comparison, the Samsung Galaxy Watch5 Pro and Watch5 are equipped with 1.4-inch screens with a resolution of 450x450 and 1.2 with 396x396. The screens are protected by sapphire crystal. Samsung promises a peak brightness of 2000 nits. The screen is really very bright and does not fade in the bright sun. The picture is very clear and rich. The refresh rate is 60 Hz, but in certain scenarios it can drop to 12 Hz. For example, in Always on Display. This slightly reduces power consumption, but not globally. And Always on Display still eats up most of the charge. There is an automatic brightness control using the corresponding sensor under the display and a manual mode with 10 brightness levels. The smartwatch is controlled by a touchscreen display, a rotating bezel, and physical buttons. To navigate through the interface or lists, the swivel bezel is the most convenient. It has a very pleasant stroke with clear notches. The top physical button is responsible for accessing the home screen and launching the selected application with a double click. It is convenient to set it to launch Google Wallet. The bottom button goes back one level.

Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic has an updated hardware platform. Instead of the Exynos W920, the new Exynos W930 processor is used. It is also manufactured on a 5nm process technology and includes 2 Cortex-A55 cores operating at a higher frequency of 1.4 GHz compared to the previous model, and also uses more productive graphics.Mali-G68 MP2. The amount of RAM has increased from 1.5 to 2 GB. The platform is said to be 18% faster overall. At, there is 16 GB of internal memory left. In addition to pre-installed applications, it can be used to download playlists for sports. According to my personal feelings, there is no significant difference in speed compared to the previous generation. This is not surprising: performance has improved, but the resolution has also increased. Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic is equipped with all the necessary wireless interfaces: dual-band Wi-Fi a/b/g/n, Bluetooth 5.3. To determine the location and record routes, there is GPS, GLONASS, GALILEO and BDS. There is an NFC module and Google Pay support. Work with eSIM is supported for offline use without a smartphone. It supports voice calls and can give advice during workouts using an external speaker.

How user-friendly is the interface and what are the features?

Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic runs on Wear OS 4.0 with its own One UI Watch shell version 5.0. There are no significant changes compared to version 4.5. The interface is well optimised for use on such devices. The logic of the interface remains unchanged. The home screen has a customisable watch face (colour and information displayed). The range of watchfaces is quite large, with plenty to choose from. There are both classic versions with hands and sports-oriented versions. To the left of the watch face is a screen of messages and notifications. You can reply from the watch using voice dialing, the keyboard, templates or symbols. To the right of the main screen are widgets. There are many useful widgets available that can be supplemented with installed applications. There is a day's activity, sleep monitoring, music player control, heart rate, stress, blood oxygen level, weather, quick workout start, and more. The curtain with quick settings and wireless interface switches is designed similarly to smartphones.

The list of all installed applications is also displayed similarly to smartphones: by swiping from the bottom of the screen. Applications are presented in the form of round icons, the order of which can be changed. There is a manager of running applications where you can disable all unnecessary ones. Downloading and updating is done via Google Play, just like we used to. It's fashionable from a watch, it's possible from a smartphone. Not too many apps are available. Mostly for sports. Google Pay, Google Maps, notifications, compass, camera remote control, timer, native apps for music services Spotify, Deezer, YouTube Music, Strava, Google Keep, Shazam, etc. are pre-installed.

The watch settings are quite convenient and clear. There are settings for wireless connections, notifications, modes (a new feature that allows you to automatically turn off some notifications, turn on maps, and reduce brightness according to the settings), screen, sounds and vibration, automatic measurement of heart rate, blood oxygen level, sleep, temperature, training, additional gestures, and software updates.

The capabilities of Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic in terms of body condition and training are quite extensive. The watch can track your heart rate (including automatic measurement every 10 minutes), blood oxygen saturation, stress level, sleep quality (with tips for improving it, snoring tracking and temperature measurement), count steps, record speed and route using the built-in GPS, and more. The measurement accuracy is high for a non-specialised device. At least, this applies to steps, distance, route, sleep, and heart rate. You can easily check the accuracy of these indicators yourself. For example, the error when measuring heart rate is usually no more than 1-2%. There are many training programmes available, including running, strength training on machines, swimming in different conditions, yoga, etc.

Bioimpedance analysis of body structure has not changed. The watch is able to determine the percentage of muscle, fluid and adipose tissue, and the body's metabolic rate by sending a weak current through the body. We have already described the principle of operation. Different tissues of the body have different standard fluid levels and different resistances, so the watch analyses the ratio of tissues. Of course, the accuracy cannot be checked at home, although Samsung emphasises that the Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic is not a medical device.

The previous generation of the Samsung Galaxy Watch5 introduced blood pressure and ECG measurement functions. Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic has them as well. Of course, these are not medical indicators and should be used for informational purposes only. To measure blood pressure, the watch needs to be calibrated, but for this you will need a blood pressure monitor of certain models with Bluetooth. So, unfortunately, it was not possible to test the function. The ECG function works without additional equipment.

To fully interact with the Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic, you will have to use as many as three applications. Galaxy Wearable is a general application for watches, headphones, and other accessories of the company. It contains all the basic settings: watchfaces, widgets, apps, notifications, updates:

The Samsung Health app is responsible for all the health indicators, training history, etc.:

Samsung Health Monitor is a separate app for ECG and blood pressure:

How long does the Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic last on a single battery charge?

The 43 mm version of the Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic has a 300 mAh battery, the 47 mm version has a 425 mAh battery. They promise up to 40 hours of operation. Perhaps the 47 mm model has a slightly longer battery life. But the 43mm model is not very good. The performance remains at the level of previous models. Moreover, the Samsung Galaxy Watch5 Pro lasted longer, but it also has a 590 mAh battery. If you use all the possible functions, including Always on Display, all notifications, , auto-recording of walks and workouts, constant heart rate measurement, monitoring of blood oxygen levels during sleep, and 1.5-2 g workouts, the gadget lasts about a day. With Always on Display switched off and some functions disabled, you can get up to 2 days.

It supports fast charging up to 45% in 30 minutes. It takes just over an hour to fully charge.

In dry balance. Five things you need to know about Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic:

  • Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic is a WearOS smartwatch with a comfortable bangle.
  • It has maximum functionality: dozens of apps and more than 90 different types of workouts.
  • The watch is IP68, MIL-STD-810H protected and can withstand water pressure up to 5 ATM.
  • Supports Google Pay contactless payment.
  • At maximum load, it works for a day.
Samsung Galaxy Watch6 Classic features
Display 1.3 inches, 432x432 / 1.5 inches 480x480 Super AMOLED, Sapphire crystal
Dimensions 43 mm: 42.5x42.5x10.9 mm, 47 mm: 46.5x46.5x10.9 mm
Weight 43 mm: 52 g, 47 mm: 59 g
Operating system One UI Watch 5 based on Wear OS 4
Processor dual-core 1.4GHz Exynos W930 processor
Internal memory 16 GB
Heart rate monitor optical
Communications Bluetooth 5.3, dual-band Wi-Fi, NFC, GPS, Glonass, LTE
Security 5 ATM, MIL-STD-810H
Optional Always On Display, microphone, speaker
Battery 43 mm: 300 mAh, 47 mm: 425 mAh

Go Deeper:

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