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Apple Watch 7 vs. Samsung Galaxy Watch 4: Which smartwatch wins?

Apple Watch vs Galaxy Watch 4
(Image credit: Future)

This Apple Watch 7 vs. Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 face-off compares the top two smartwatches on the markets. With the both of these smartwatches available now, you might be wondering which wins.

The Apple Watch 7 and Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 are two of the best smartwatches you can buy right now — period. Although each caters to different users, innovations in wearable computing are usually determined by the new features both companies can bring to customers' wrists.

But did Apple or Samsung produce the better device? This Apple Watch 7 vs Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 face-off covers how the two smartwatches stack up. 

Apple Watch 7 vs. Samsung Galaxy Watch 4: Price and availability

The Apple Watch 7 starts at $399 for the 41mm GPS-only model, which is how much the 40-millimeter Apple Watch 6 with GPS cost. It was announced alongside the iPhone 13 series and is available now.

The Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 is available, too. It starts at $249.99 for the 40mm Bluetooth model and $299.99 for the 40mm LTE model. The Galaxy Watch 4 Classic model with elevated materials starts at $349.99 for the 42mm Bluetooth model and $399.99 for the 42mm LTE model. It was announced alongside the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 and Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3, two of the best phones you can buy now.

Apple Watch 7 vs. Samsung Galaxy Watch 4: Design

The Apple Watch’s design didn't get the sweeping flat-edged redesigned rumored in past months — the Series 7 is actually curvier compared to previous Apple Watch models. It's not as obvious unless you're looking at the Apple Watch 7 vs. Apple Watch 6 side-by-side, though.

But the Apple Watch 7 display is probably the biggest upgrade, making it the best Apple Watch yet. Apple hasn't changed the Apple Watch's display borders in several years. But now, the Apple Watch 7's display is up to 20% bigger than the Apple Watch 6's. With a tiny 1.7mm bezel, the Apple Watch looks a lot larger, even though the chassis size hasn't changed. It sure looks like it maximizes screen real estate better than the Galaxy Watch 4.

Apple Watch 7 review

(Image credit: Future)

The Galaxy Watch 4 actually has two design options. First, the sporty-looking Galaxy Watch 4 as the company’s flagship and a follow-up to the Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2. Second, the ‘Classic’ version that carries on the luxurious characteristics of last year’s Samsung Galaxy Watch 3. The Classic model looks more like a traditional watch, offering a good balance of fashion and function, complete with a physical rotating bezel you can use to navigate menus. 

Samsung Galaxy Watch 4

(Image credit: Future)

Apple Watch 7 vs. Samsung Galaxy Watch 4: New features and software

The Galaxy Watch 4 has several more exclusive features compared to the Apple Watch 7. They include body composition analysis via BIA, plus better sleep tracking with more frequent overnight blood oxygen readings. 

Additional upgrades to both smartwatches will come via software. The Apple Watch 7 ships with watchOS 8, which offers new messaging options, multiple timers and a Mindfulness app. One software that is unique to the Apple Watch 7, though, is one we've had on our wishlist for a while now. 

Apple Watch 7 keyboard

(Image credit: Future)

Taking advantage of the expanded screen, the Series 7 gets a full keyboard for typing out messages. It's the one thing we said Apple Watch 7 should steal from the Galaxy Watch 4, so we're glad it materialized. 

The Galaxy Watch 4 is the first smartwatch to run the new Wear OS, officially called Wear OS 3. Samsung has customized the experience with One UI Watch, though, so it still feels like Tizen somewhat. As the best Samsung watch, we like that the Galaxy Watch 4 offers some familiarity.

Samsung Galaxy Watch 4

(Image credit: Future)

If Wear plus One UI Watch lives up to its promises, it could make for the most convincing Apple Watch rival to date. See our Wear OS vs. watchOS face-off for more on how the two softwares stack up.

Apple Watch 7 vs. Samsung Galaxy Watch 4: Battery life

Based on our usage, we found the Galaxy Watch 3 lasted just over a day with the always-on display and frequent activity tracking. It seems like the Galaxy Watch 4 lasts about the same length of time, though it can be stretched to two days.

The Apple Watch Series 7 battery life can also last up to two days, but that’s if you pass on popular features. Instead, the 18-hour battery life checked out with daily activity tracking, and always on display and a couple of phone calls answered from my wrist. The Series 7 ships with a new USB-C to Magnetic charger that's supposed to help it charge 33% faster than the Series 6, though.

Apple Watch 7 vs. Samsung Galaxy Watch 4: Which wins?

This Apple Watch 7 vs. Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 face-off doesn't have a clear winner. The Apple Watch is the top choice for iPhone users, while the Galaxy Watch 4 is the top choice for Android users. But now that Samsung has teamed up with Google, it could pull from Fitbit's fanbase with the best Fitbit devices, too.

Still not sure which smartwatch is right for you? See our smartwatch buying guide for more advice.

Kate Kozuch

Kate Kozuch is a senior writer at Tom’s Guide covering wearables, TVs and everything smart-home related. When she’s not in cyborg mode, you can find her on an exercise bike or channeling her inner celebrity chef. She and her robot army will rule the world one day, but until then, reach her at kate.kozuch@futurenet.com.