When a hip-hop track is crushing, it’s because the song does a perfect job of blending beat, sampling, and hooks. You can’t help it—you hear it in your sleep, and check yourself singing it in the shower.
That’s Samsung’s Gear Fit2 Pro, in a nutshell.
With the Gear Fit2 Pro, Samsung has proven adept at sampling by maintaining the slim, sleek, form factor of other, more plain-Jane fitness bands. It has also pioneered its own “hooks” by offering your favorite fitness apps like Under Armour’s, and a standalone Spotify player. Oh, and it’s waterproof to 50 meters. And dang if it doesn’t have one of the brightest Super AMOLED touch-sensitive displays we’ve ever seen. There’s also native GPS, so you can go for a run, listen to tunes, and come back with your workout tracked—all without needing your phone.
Diving a bit deeper, here’s more of what we loved during testing:
Onboard heart rate is a given for wearables these days, but we really like that Samsung lets you choose how you want tracking to work at any point (a lot of wearables lock out that flexibility). You can track only during workouts if you’d like. But say you just want to see how you’re doing on any given day: tap the heart rate function for constant monitoring.
Additionally, within the Samsung Health App, you can add dozens of heart rate-compatible fitness apps to track everything from burpees to indoor running, jumping rope to jumping Jacks, planks to pullups, rock climbing to kite surfing. Do you go yachting? There’s an app for that. You can also add third-party apps a la carte, too, like all of UA’s MapMyFitness suite (including MapMy Run).
Music streaming (over any set of Bluetooth earbuds) is also pretty straightforward on the Gear Fit2 Pro, with pairing about as simple and quick as we’ve ever seen. As mentioned, you can download your favorite Spotify playlists, or your own tracks. (Yes, even Apple Music songs work).
Working out is also very straightforward. You can just begin a run and the Gear Fit2 Pro will know you’re running. Same goes for when you’re on a bike ride. Whatever your workout, the smartwatch will record the whole run without you ever having to touch the screen.
The Speedo App also offers swimming metrics like laps, strokes, and SWOLF efficiency. As with Android Wear and Google Fit, the Gear Fit2 Pro uses the Gear app to control the actual device from your phone, while your fitness metrics actually live in the Samsung Health App. This is great, because it means no matter what app you use for fitness, you can still get to all the data the Gear Fit2 Pro captures under a single “roof”. Whether you’re tracking nutrition with MyFitness Pal and crunches in its own app, and tracking your sleep (yes, Gear Fit2 Pro does that, too), it’s “one-stop shopping” to get a handle on your data.
The svelte design is super-comfortable—in large part because the band is simply softer than that of most trackers. Like most smartwatches, you don’t want to write novels (or even haikus) on its petite screen. But the Gear Fit2 Pro does allow message forwarding when your phone is paired, and comes with a series of pre-baked responses you can use to reply from your wrist—and you can customize personal ones, including any emoji combo you can think of.
Finally, and most sweetly, the Fit2 Pro packs three days of battery life, so a day of charging won’t mean you’re walking around with a blank screen on your wrist. Switch on the GPS and it’ll still muster nine hours of batter life—a marathon compared to most pure fitness smartwatches.
That’s a hook anyone—from fitness enthusiasts to tech-minded folks—can appreciate.
The Samsung Gear Fit2 Pro retails for $199 and is available at samsung.com.