Samsung Galaxy Ring: Announcement, rumors, and everything we know so far

Smartwatches and fitness trackers are some of the most used consumer wearables, thanks to devices like the Apple Watch and Fitbit bands. But now, an even smaller type of wearable is making its way in the form of a ring, capable of measuring many of the same health and fitness metrics as a smartwatch. These devices haven’t exactly blown up in popularity (yet), but following the popularity of the Oura Ring, Samsung is gearing up to step into the ring (see what I did there?) with its own device: the Galaxy Ring.

What this means is that with the popularity of Galaxy smartphones, we could potentially see more people adopting this smaller form factor since it would be attached to a popular brand. Not only that, but we could see some interesting features on the ring that would better tie to your phone.

After a few rumors and leaks, Samsung officially teased the Galaxy Ring at Unpacked 2024 and has since shown off the device while divulging more details ahead of the launch. Here’s what we know and what we hope to see.

Samsung Galaxy Ring: Price and availability

(Image credit: Nicholas Sutrich / Android Central)

We know a Galaxy Ring is on the way, and the full launch will happen later this year, although Samsung hasn’t specified a date. Previous rumors pointed to Samsung revealing the wearable alongside the upcoming Galaxy S24 series, which was the case. More recently, Samsung has accidentally revealed details about the launch, saying it will happen in the second half of 2024.

Although a date was not specified, rumors point to a launch happening quite soon after H2 2024 begins, likely in early July. This would put the Galaxy Ring launch alongside the likely reveal of Samsung’s next foldable phones, the Galaxy Z Fold 6 and Z Flip 6, at least if last year’s schedule was anything to go by. Interestingly, this is also when we expect the next Galaxy Watch 7 to launch, so it’ll be interesting to see how Samsung positions both devices.

Samsung Galaxy Ring: Announcement, rumors, and everything we know so far

(Image credit: Nicholas Sutrich / Android Central)

As for pricing, it’s unclear what Samsung may charge for the device, but if we’re looking at its current wearables and the price of the most popular smart rings, then this small device likely won’t be cheap. A device like this could start at around $299, which would be a bit pricier than the cheapest Galaxy Watch 6 but similar to the Oura Ring.

Samsung Galaxy Ring: Design

Samsung Galaxy Ring: Announcement, rumors, and everything we know so far

(Image credit: Nicholas Sutrich / Android Central)

When you think of a smart ring, the first to come to your mind is probably the Oura Ring. It’s a fantastic device that shoves a ton of health-tracking features into a relatively small form factor. Aside from the internal structure where the sensors are located, it looks just like a regular ring would without being particularly bulky.

This is what we expect from the Galaxy Ring. The company gave us a glimpse of the wearable during Unpacked, although an up-close look at MWC 2024 shows us that Samsung is going for a more concave design for the ring, giving it a fairly unique look. We could also see the inner sensors of the ring, which appear similar to what we’ve seen on other devices.

Like Oura, Samsung will also offer the device in different finishes and colors, similar to its other wearable offerings. We got to see it in silver, gold, and black, although it’s not clear if these will be the only color options.

Samsung Galaxy Ring: Features and specs

Samsung Galaxy Ring: Announcement, rumors, and everything we know so far

(Image credit: Derrek Lee / Android Central)

Since smart rings are capable of fitting a surprising amount of sensors into a small form, we expect the Galaxy Ring will be capable of capturing the same health tracking data as Samsung’s other wearables. According to a patent for the device, the Galaxy Ring will come with a PPG heart rate sensor and ECG sensor, although we also expect sleep monitoring, SpO2, and more.

In fact, one report states that the Galaxy Ring could have “higher accuracy” than some of the best Android smartwatches from Samsung, which may appeal to health-conscious users.

According to early patents, the Galaxy Ring may also be capable of controlling other devices, such as a smartphone, tablet, or laptop, but it’s unclear if Samsung actually plans to implement this into its upcoming device.

(Image credit: Samsung Electronics / U.S Patent Office (via Naver))

What’s clear is that Samsung really intends to lean into Galaxy AI with the ring, as it will play a big part in the company’s health efforts. This would mean anything from AI-based coaching to calculating a readiness score based on your metrics and then offering recommendations for your day, similar to Oura.

As for battery life, Samsung has come on record as expecting users to get up to nine days of battery life from the Galaxy Ring or as little as five days. That’s about what users can expect from the Oura Ring, depending on the features they have enabled.

Samsung will likely pair the device with the Galaxy Wearable app and Samsung Health, both of which are used for its other wearable devices like the Galaxy Watch 5. With the Galaxy Wearable app, you’ll likely use this to change settings and manage other functions like notifications, while Samsung Health will gather the health data.

As for compatible phones, Samsung has yet to confirm much, but an executive says the company is working on support for non-Galaxy Android phones. As such, we’ve already seen the device appear on the Battery widget, despite not being available yet. This means support may initially be limited to Samsung phones, which is the case for Samsung’s Health Monitor, an app that enables additional features like ECG and blood pressure monitoring.

The Ring may not support iPhones at launch, although it’s unclear if this support will come down the road.

Samsung Galaxy Ring: Wishlist

Samsung Galaxy Ring: Announcement, rumors, and everything we know so far

(Image credit: Derrek Lee / Android Central)

This will be Samsung’s first smart ring, and while it’s a relatively niche segment of the wearable market compared to the best fitness trackers, we would love to see Samsung enter it with a bang. Therefore, there are some features and expectations we have if Samsung is to make a splash in the smart ring market, but it requires taking a look at what Oura has accomplished and following up while also exceeding the capabilities of the Oura Ring.

Here’s what we’d like to see:

Vibration alerts

While owning a smart ring is a nice, discreet way to track health and fitness, the lack of a display means you have to rely on your phone for notifications.  However, when notifications come into the phone from messages, calls, and otherwise, it would be nice for the ring to be able to gently nudge you when this happens.

The vibration doesn’t have to be strong, but just enough that you feel it. Of course, this could affect battery life, so it should be up to the user to adjust this feature or turn it off if they don’t want it.

Gestures

Patents suggest Samsung plans to let users control other devices with the ring. It would be cool to have some kind of gesture system similar to what the S Pen can do with devices like the Galaxy S23 Ultra. That could include moving the ring in a certain way while you wear it, tapping the ring, or even swiping on it with some sort of touch panel.

This would be the perfect way to add utility to the ring, and Samsung could easily market the feature as a magical way to control your devices.

Long battery life

Wearable battery life is very important, and the Oura Ring has shown us what is possible on such a small device, offering roughly a week’s worth of use on a single charge. That’s pretty impressive, and Samsung should match this on the Galaxy Ring.

Moreover, Samsung should provide some sort of fast charging so that users aren’t waiting around for hours for the device to top up.

Location tracking

One of the biggest downsides of the Oura Ring is that there’s no way to locate it if you lose track of it. Without GPS, UWB, or the like, you’re pretty much SOL if you misplace it, which is quite unfortunate because this device is not cheap.

Samsung has the SmartThings Find network and should really take advantage of this with the Galaxy Ring. The company should figure out a way to bring location tracking to the ring, which can now only help track workouts but also allow you to find the ring if it’s misplaced.

Automatic activity detection

This one is kind of a given, but the ring should not just track your workouts, but it should do it automatically. I continue to gush over how impressive the Oura Ring is when it comes to this, as it once detected that I was dancing while at a house party. Samsung’s smartwatches have not been quite as robust when it comes to automatic activity detection/tracking, but hopefully the company can step things up if with the ring.

Accessories

Working out with a hard, rigid ring can be… awkward, particularly when it comes to lifting weights. One thing that could help is a sort of soft case that can be placed over it temporarily to protect the ring from scuffs and scratches, while hopefully making it more comfortable to wear during a workout. Samsung already has great accessories for its products, so it would be a shame to leave out the Galaxy Ring.

Via: Androidcentral

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