Samsung is one of the only companies that offers a reliable Android smartwatch due to the lack of innovation by its rivals. A Galaxy Watch is not a wise investment, though, if you don’t already own a Samsung smartphone. Simply put, you won’t get some of its key features.
Galaxy Watch Works with Most Android Phones
Samsung’s smartwatches are compatible with almost all Android smartphones. All you need is a recent version of Android, some RAM, and the Google Play Store (or Google Mobile Services, to be specific).
The compatibility requirements for the last three generations of the Galaxy Watch are as follows:
- Galaxy Watch 5 Series requires Android 8.0 or later and at least 1.5GB of RAM.
- Galaxy Watch 4 Series requires Android 6.0 or later and at least 1.5GB of RAM.
- Galaxy Watch 3 Series requires Android 6.0 or later and at least 1.5GB of RAM.
Unfortunately, Samsung dropped iOS support for the Galaxy Watch 4 and Galaxy Watch 5. Older models of the Galaxy Watch are compatible with the iPhone, but iPhone users are better off sticking with the Apple Watch.
It is recommended to visit Samsung’s support page for more information on Galaxy Watch compatibility.
However, some Galaxy Watch features are exclusive to Samsung
As you may be aware, the Galaxy Watch requires Samsung-developed software. When you set up a Galaxy Watch, this software automatically installs on your non-Samsung phone, thanks to Samsung’s excellent Galaxy Wearable app.
However, some Samsung software will not be installed on your device. The Galaxy Watch cannot perform some of its essential functions without this software.
Here are some Galaxy Watch features that necessitate the use of a Samsung phone:
- Samsung’s AR Emoji watch faces for blood pressure monitoring
- Online Smartphone camera control
These features, once again, necessitate Samsung-exclusive software, such as the Galaxy Health Monitoring app. It’s an arbitrary restriction that Samsung needs to explain, making the Galaxy Watch unappealing to anyone who wants to use flagship features like the ECG.
Other minor features, such as Do Not Disturb syncing, Samsung messages, and Bedtime mode, are only available on Samsung smartphones. The ECG and blood pressure monitor, however, are the real deal.
Can You Force These Exclusive Features Onto a Phone?
So, the Galaxy Watch’s blood pressure and ECG sensors require the Galaxy Health Monitoring app. This stupid app can’t just be sideloaded onto any old phone, can it? After all, APK Mirror offers Galaxy Health Monitoring for free.
The solution is somewhat intricate. The Galaxy Health Monitoring APK won’t function if you install it on the phone made by a manufacturer other than Samsung. However, a modified version of this app is available.
The modified Galaxy Health Monitoring app, created by Dante64 of XDA Developers, works on any modern Android phone. It unlocks the Galaxy Watch 4’s ECG and blood pressure monitor regardless of which device you use, as long as it meets the hardware requirements of the Galaxy Watch 4.
However, installing this modified app is a pain in the buttocks, and there’s no guarantee that it will work indefinitely. This workaround isn’t worth the trouble unless you’re a ridiculous nerd. Even if you’re a huge nerd, you should buy a smartwatch with all the features you want right out of the box.
Should You Buy a Galaxy Watch?
If you are okay with preceding a few features, the Galaxy Watch is an excellent companion for non-Samsung phones. However, spending hundreds of dollars on a Galaxy Watch to miss out on the ECG is a bummer.
So, it is recommended to look into alternatives. Mobvoi and Fossil both sell excellent Android smartwatches. And if fitness is your thing, Samsung isn’t the best option—brands like Garmin and Fitbit are better for athletes.
You could also wait for the Google Pixel Watch, which is expected to be released in late 2022. It is a viable alternative to Samsung’s Galaxy Watch and is expected to ship with Wear OS 3 at launch.
Set up your Samsung smartwatch without a phone
You must connect your smartwatch to your phone to use its enjoyable and practical features. But it’s not a problem if you don’t have a phone because you can still use your watch without a phone. However, the Galaxy Fit, Galaxy Fit2, and Galaxy Watch4 series can only be used with a phone.
Here is how you can set up your smartwatch without a phone:
When your watch turns on, swipe up and tap the question mark icon. Swipe up and tap here on the next screen. Continue, and then accept the various policies. Then, follow the instructions to set up your watch without a phone.
If your watch supports LTE, you will be asked to sign up for a mobile data plan. If you already have this service, swipe to the bottom, check the box next to it and then tap Next.
Please get in touch with your mobile carrier if you do not have a mobile data plan and would like to learn more.
Tap Skip to continue setting up your device if you do not want service on your watch or if you have a Wi-Fi model.
To conclude, you can use a galaxy smartwatch with other android phones except for Samsung phones. However, some watch features work exclusively with Samsung, and installing them on other phones is very difficult. Moreover, the Samsung smartwatch can be used solo without any phone. This article explains how you can set up your smartwatch without a phone. A used phone is an excellent option if you want to update your phone, but your budget is small.