Samsung’s Galaxy Watch 4 can’t be paired to your Apple iPhone
At Galaxy Unpacked event on Wednesday, Samsung unveiled a bunch of new products, including the showstopper Galaxy Z Fold 3 and Z Flip 3, and of course, the hotly anticipated Galaxy Watch 4 series. Samsung’s new smartwatch has everything you would expect from a flagship smartwatch: a bright, beautiful display, a powerful processor, extensive health and fitness tracking features, solid battery life, and a wide selection of apps. What it doesn’t have, though, is iPhone compatibility.
Since the Galaxy Watch 4 series uses Google’s Wear OS, most of us assumed that it would be compatible with iOS. But it turns out that’s not the case. Apparently, the Galaxy Watch 4 and Galaxy Watch 4 Classic are only compatible with devices running Android 6.0 and above.
“All participants must have Android smartphone running 6.0 or above with the latest version of the Samsung Health app and a Galaxy smartwatch and/or fitness tracker,” reads a footnote on the Galaxy Watch 4 product page.
It’s not immediately clear why Samsung decided not to support iOS, especially considering that the existing Tizen-powered Samsung smartwatches work with iOS. Not to mention, other Wear OS-powered smartwatches on the market can be paired to Apple devices via the Wear OS app available on the Apple App Store. It might have to do with new changes/requirements introduced as part of the Wear OS platform redesign, but we don’t know for sure.
On the same Galaxy Watch 4 product page, Samsung mentions towards the end that the device activation is only possible if the user is connected to a device with Google Mobile Services (GMS).
Device activation is only available after connecting to a smartphone that supports Google Mobile Services(GMS).
That not only rules out iOS but also phones that lack GMS, such as Huawei phones and custom ROMs without Google apps (GApps). If you are an iPhone owner, Samsung’s shiny smartwatch is clearly not for you. You’re better off sticking with the Apple ecosystem and getting an Apple Watch.