25 essential Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 tips and features

25 essential Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 tips and features

  13 Sep 2021

So you’ve just bagged a Samsung Galaxy Watch 4, but as you get to grips with what Wear OS 3 you might be wondering if you’re using your smartwatch to the fullest.

While the Galaxy Watch 4 is a pretty straightforward smartwatch to use, we’ve found some useful things that you might not immediately spot that this option for Android users is capable of.

You might also be wondering how to do some very basic things like working out how to turn that screen to always-on, or whether you can give the Galaxy Watch 4 a simple reboot.

We’ve spent a fair amount of time getting to know the Watch 4 and Wear OS 3, so we’ve come up with what we think are some useful tips to know to get the most from your Samsung smartwatch.

Here’s our pick of the useful things you should know about the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4.

How to turn on always-on display mode

turn on always-on display mode

You’ll likely find that out of the box, the Watch 4 does not have the always-on screen mode enabled. If you want to check in on the time at all times, you need to do the following:

1. Swipe down from the main watch screen to reveal the quick settings. Tap the cog to open settings.

2. Scroll down to Display and search for the Always on Display option and tap to enable.

3. Now you’ll be able to view the time at any time and you’ll also be able to still view your screen during workouts instead of raising to wake the display.

How to re-arrange apps

How to re-arrange apps

Unlike previous Samsung smartwatches, your installed apps live in a different place. You do though have the ability to arrange, which apps are displayed first in that new-look app screen. To re-arrange your apps:

1. Swipe up from the main watch screen to reveal the app screen

2. Find an app you want to move and tap and press to select it.

3. Drag the app into a new position and then let go of the screen.

4. You can perform the same action if you want to uninstall an app from your Watch 4 too.

How to turn off the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4

turn off the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4

If for whatever reason you need to entirely turn your Watch 4 off, there’s a couple of quick ways to do that. The first way is to swipe down from the main watch screen and you’ll find a standby button a bit like the one on a remote control, which will let you turn off the watch.

Alternatively, you can hold both physical buttons on the side of the watch and that will quickly push you into the same screen.

Organise your quick settings

Organise your quick settings

When we’re talking about quick settings, we’re referring to the settings you’ll find when swiping down from the main watch face screen. It’s here where you can find things like the do not disturb mode, turning on the flashlight mode and adjusting screen brightness. You also have control over what settings are shown here and where they live.

To re-arrange settings:

1. Tap and press an app icon and keep your finger on the icon to drag it to another position. Alternatively, you can choose to remove the setting icon selected, and it’ll be replaced by a new one.

2. If you want to add a new setting, swipe left to get to the last screen and hit the + icon to add a new shortcut setting.

Connect to exercise machines

Connect to exercise machines

The Watch 4 is capable of being wirelessly connected to compatible exercise equipment in a similar way that the Apple Watch can through its GymKit platform. That way you can use the onboard heart rate sensor along data from machines like treadmills for a more comprehensive overview of you workout. To do this, you need to:

1. Go to the Samsung Health app on your Watch 4

2. Scroll all the way down to Settings

3. Scroll down to Connected services

4. Tap the toggle next to Heart rate to transmit heart rate data

5. You can additionally choose to use your Profile (height, weight, gender) during this mode to better estimate calorie burn to.

Turn off the touch bezel

Turn off the touch bezel

Samsung’s bezel has been a signature feature on its most recent smartwatch. if you have the Galaxy Watch 4, which hosts a digital-style touch bezel and you don’t really find it that useful, you can disable it. To turn off the touch bezel:

1. Go to Settings and then scroll to General.

2. The mode to disable the touch bezel should feature at the top of that General page.

Connect the Watch 4 to TVs

Connect the Watch 4 to TVs

When Samsung announced the Galaxy Watch 4, it revealed that you’d be able to transmit heart rate data to compatible fitness apps on compatible Samsung TVs to view your effort levels without staring down at your watch. To connect the Galaxy Watch 4 to a Samsung TV:

1. Go to the Samsung Health app on your Watch 4

2. Scroll all the way down to Settings

3. Scroll down to Connected services and select TV

4. Tap the toggle button to show heart rate and calorie burn on your TV.

How to turn off continuous heart rate monitoring

How to turn off continuous heart rate monitoring

If you’re not particularly fussed about keeping close tabs on your heart rate, there is a way to turn that continuous monitoring off. Turning it off will likely give battery life a boost too.

To adjust those heart rate monitoring settings:

1. Go to the Samsung Health app on your Watch 4

2. Scroll all the way down to Settings

3. Select Measurement

4. You now have the option to switch to monitoring HR every 10 minutes while still or select manual monitoring option too.

5. You have the same option for stress monitoring too, which uses heart rate variability measurements, so will also have a drain on battery if you’re looking for ways to get closer to a few days between charges.

Check how much battery life you have left

Check how much battery life you have left

Like previous Samsung smartwatches, you can view battery percentage simply by swiping down from the main watch screen. On the Watch 4, Samsung additionally adds a battery screen where you can see an estimate of battery life in days and also see the difference in battery life when you turn to the power saving mode.

To view that battery screen:

1. Swipe down from the main watch screen to view quick settings and tap the cog icon to open Settings.

2. Scroll to Battery and you can see that battery life estimate in full smartwatch mode along with an estimate if you choose to switch to that power saving mode.

Reset the Galaxy Watch 4

Reset the Galaxy Watch 4

If for some reason you need to entirely reset your Watch 4, the good news is that you can do that here. To fully reset the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4:

1. Swipe down from the main watch screen to view quick settings and tap the cog icon to open Settings.

2. Select General and scroll down to Reset.

3. You’ll be given the option to back up data, if there’s information you’d like to keep before you hit that reset button below it.

Change Activity targets

Change Activity targets

Whether you’re smashing your daily step counts targets or you want to increase the time you get a sweat on, there’s a really easy way to change your Activity targets. Here’s what you need to do:

1. Swipe left from the main watch screen and locate the Activity Tile (heart shaped icon).

2. Tap on the Tile and scroll down to Set targets.

3. From here you can adjust Steps, Active time andActivity calories targets.

Turn on automatic exercise detection

Turn on automatic exercise detection

Samsung supports the ability to automatically track a range of exercises including running, indoor rowing and stepping up onto the elliptical machine. You can additionally automatically record your location when it detects you’re walking or running.

To enable this feature go to the Samsung Health app and go to Settings. Select Auto detect workouts and you’ll be able to enable tracking for the 5 different support activities along with the location recording.

Keep your Samsung apps updated

Keep your Samsung apps updated

If you want to quickly check if you’re running the latest version of Samsung’s own apps like Health and Bixby, there’s a way to see if there are any app updates available.

To check if your Samsung app are updated go to Settings and then select Apps.

Scroll down to Samsung app updates. If an update is available, it will show up offering you the option to update.

Change the font size

Change the font size

If you’re finding it difficult to absorb data screens or would prefer to text to look a bit larger (or smaller), you do have the ability to adjust the font size on the Galaxy Watch 4. To do this, you need to do the following:

1. Go to Settings and then select Accessibility

2. Select Visibility enhancements and select Font size. You can pick from small, medium and large font size.

Use gesture controls for handling calls

Use gesture controls for handling calls

There are a couple of ways to interact with the Galaxy Watch 4 without having to press a button or tap that touchscreen display. When the phone starts to ring there are two gestures you can enable to answer or dismiss. To turn these gestures on:

1. Go to Settings and then Advanced features on your Watch 4

2. Scroll to Gestures and look for answer calls and dismiss alerts and calls. Tap to turn on each gesture.

Turn off all sounds

Turn off all sounds

Samsung gives you option to drown out all the noise including alerts and tones if you want to enjoy a quiet smartwatch experience. To do turn off all the sounds:

1. Go to Settings and then select Accessibility.

2. Next, tap Hearing enhancements and tap the toggle next to Mute all sounds.

Check your storage

Check your storage

For those taking full advantage of piling on apps, photos and music onto their Galaxy Watch 4 smartwatches, there is a way to see how much storage you’ve got to play with. To view storage space on your Watch 4:

1. Go to Settings and then About Watch

2. Tap storage and you’ll see available space along with how much space is taken up by images, audio and apps and watch faces.

View media controls

View media controls

Being able to control the music playing back on your smartphone is one of the great things about having a smartwatch. The Galaxy Watch 4 supports this feature, though you might find it’s disabled out of the box. To turn on those media controls, do the following:

1. Go to Settings and then Display.

2. Scroll to find Show media controls and tap to turn those controls on.

Enable power saving and watch only modes

Enable power saving and watch only modes

With the Watch 4, you’re playing with around a couple of days battery life, but there are ways to make sure you enjoy the maximum battery life between charges. You can turn on the power saving mode, which isn’t as restrictive as it sounds and does still give you access to most of the key features. The watch only mode on the other hand keeps things basic and will let you only view the time. To turn these modes on:

1. Go to Settings and the Battery

2. From here you can view watch only and power saving modes with the latter letting you see how much extra battery you can expect compared to normal battery mode.

Hear notifications read out to you

Hear notifications read out to you

This is a useful feature if you’ve got a pair of Blueooth headphones hooked up to your watch and you don’t have easy access to the screen to see your notifications. To get notifications read out to you:

Go to Settings and then Notifications and scroll down to Read notifications aloud and tap to turn on this feature.

Change Home and back button controls

Change Home and back button controls

You do have the ability to change what the physical home and back buttons are capable of controlling. With the top home key, you can alternatively double press it to open any of your installed apps. The back key can be used to let you quickly view most recent apps. To access these controls:

  • Go to Settings and then Advanced features.
  • Next, select Customise keys and you’ll now be able to assign those new controls.

Turn on snore detection

Turn on snore detection

Samsung has included a few new features geared around offering a richer sleep tracking experience. That includes monitoring blood oxygen levels and the ability to detect when you’ve been snoring during sleep too. You might find you’ll need to turn these additional features on first to start tracking them. Here’s how to turn on snore detection:

  • Go to the Samsung Health app and then select Settings.
  • Tap Measurement and then select Snore detection.

Rearrange and edit Tiles

Rearrange and edit Tiles

Tiles is a Wear OS thing and is what Google essentially calls widgets or dedicated screens for native and now third party apps. You can swipe left from the main watch screen to view them. You can also tinker with where those Tiles live and even edit what some Tiles can display. To re-arrange your Tiles:

  • Swipe to a Tile and tap and press on it.
  • You can now remove the Tile and for select Tiles, you can edit them too.
  • Tap and press a Tile and continue holding to drag it into a new position. So you might want to move it to being the first Tile you see from the watch screen.

Change vibration settings

Change vibration settings

If you’re worried about missing an important notification or call, you can adjust vibration settings on the Watch 4 to make vibrations stronger or lighter or adjust vibration duration. To get to your vibration settings:

  • Go to Settings and select Sounds and vibration.
  • Scroll to Vibration and you’ll find the option of vibration intensity and vibration duration.

View exercise history

View exercise history

The Watch 4 packs a lot of sports modes and if you want to check in on your exercise history, there’s thankfully a really quick and easy way to look back at your sessions, which hasn’t always been the case on previous Samsung smartwatches.To view exercise history:

  • Go to the Samsung Health app and scroll to exercise history
  • From here you can drill into each workout and see all of your metrics. So for runs, you’ll also be able to view new advanced running metrics.

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