One of the biggest new features of the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 is its ability to measure a user’s body composition. Thanks to the new Samsung BioActive Sensor on the back of the smartwatch, this wearable can give me vital details like my skeletal muscle, fat mass, body fat percentage, BMI, and even body water.
This feature alone really does make the Galaxy Watch 4 a great motivation tool to achieve my fitness goals. Yes, the body composition analysis is not meant to be used as a diagnostic tool, but the data that it can gather can still be helpful to track my progress.
Plus, no other smartwatch in the market now offers such a feature, which gives the Watch 4 a unique appeal.
So how does the Galaxy Watch 4 measure a user’s body composition? Well, it uses a technique called bioelectrical impedance analysis (BIA). Basically, the sensor on the back of the watch sends “microcurrents to the body to measure the amount of muscle, fat, and water in the body,” as Samsung puts it.
Even though BIA is harmless to humans, Samsung doesn’t advise using the body composition analysis if you’re pregnant. If you have an electronic medical device inside of your body (such as a pacemaker or defibrillator), the same disclaimer applies, so keep this in mind.
When you’re ready to measure your body composition with the Galaxy Watch 4, all you need to do is to just launch the body composition app, put your ring and middle fingers on the side buttons of the watch, and…well, let the smartwatch do its thing. After about 15 seconds, you’ll get the results.
In order to get the most accurate results from the Watch 4, Samsung has several guidelines. For one, it’s best to do the body composition analysis at the same time every day, preferably in the morning before you go about your day. Aside from that, it’s recommended to do the measurement on an empty stomach, and right after going to the bathroom.
While these guidelines seem rather troublesome, it’s important in order to get consistent results. This will make it much easier to track any changes in your body composition, and whether or not you’re getting closer (or further) from your fitness goals.
That being said, as I’ve mentioned earlier, the Galaxy Watch 4’s body composition analysis is not a diagnostic tool. Even though the results I got from the smartwatch have been quite consistent, there is still room for error; BIA is not exactly the most accurate measurement technique.
But that doesn’t mean data collected by the Watch 4 is not useful, because it certainly is in the right context. Say you want to reduce your fat mass or increase your skeletal muscle – so long as you’re taking your body composition measurements consistently in the same conditions every day, you can still use the data to track your progress.
To me, this is exactly why the Galaxy Watch 4 is an excellent motivation tool; it feels good to bring down the numbers shown in the body composition analysis. Even if these data should not be taken at face value, they can still serve as a guideline to show how much progress I’ve made in my fitness journey.
Plus, BIA has been used in many other products – such as smart scales that you see at certain gyms – to assess the fitness level of individuals. It’s not perfect, but it is still a popular measurement technique, and the fact that such a technology has been shrunk down to fit into something as small and compact as the Watch 4 is no small feat.
Besides that, the Galaxy Watch 4 itself is a fantastic smartwatch. It has robust tracking capabilities – it can detect as many as 95 different activities with a very interesting sleep tracker – it feels fast and zippy, and it has a nice, minimalist design complemented by a bright and vibrant Super AMOLED circular display.
To top it all off, the Galaxy Watch 4 is reasonably affordable too. The standard model is offered in 40mm and 44mm sizes for RM899 and RM999 respectively, while the bigger Classic version costs RM1,299 and RM1,399 for the 42mm and 46mm models respectively. These are really quite competitive price tags for a smartwatch of this calibre.
If you want a feature-packed smartwatch that can also track your fitness journey like no other wearable in the market can right now, the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 is an excellent, excellent choice. If you would like to learn more about it, check out our full review of the Watch 4 right here.