If you're looking for a watch that syncs perfectly with your phone and can track your runs, rides, swims and sleep, these are the logical choices. The successor of the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5, the Samsung Galaxy Watch 6 is the latest iteration of Samsung's flagship series, featuring an updated chipset and increased RAM to help the watch operate buttery smooth and Wear OS 4 to perform at its best.
Despite being last gen, the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro is a different matter. It has a beefed-up battery, raised bezel, and rugged case and has introduced several new features useful for hikes and trails. If the Watch 6 is a streamlined Casio, the Watch 5 Pro is a rugged G-Shock.
There's no equivalent of the Watch 5 Pro in the Watch 6 range (your only other option is the smart-looking Galaxy Watch 6 Classic), so if you want to experience the best Samsung's got to offer, your choice is between the Galaxy Watch 5 Pro and the Galaxy Watch 6. Below, we'll compare the company's best smartwatches in several categories, including price, design, features and battery life, to see which watch comes out on top.
Samsung Galaxy Watch 6 vs Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro
Samsung Galaxy Watch 6 vs Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro: price ans availbility
The Samsung Galaxy Watch 6 was released in 2023 and is available to buy now directly from Samsung and select third-party retailers. There are two models: a small 41mm model and a larger 44mm model, with GPS-only and LTE versions of both devices. That's four models in total. LTE-capable devices can be added onto a phone plan, capable of using mobile data to access the internet just like your smartphone.
In the US, prices start from $299.99 for the GPS-only 40mm model and $329.99 for the GPS-only 44mm model. Cellular connectivity via LTE adds $50 to the RRP of both devices. In the UK, prices start from £289 (40mm) to £319 (44mm). In Australia, prices start from AU$ 549 (40mm) and AU$ 599 (44mm).
The Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro comes in only one size - 45mm. Like the Watch 6, it's available in GPS-only and cellular models. In the US, the Watch 5 Pro costs $449.99 for the GPS-only version and $499.99 for the LTE 4G version. In the UK, it costs £429.99 (GPS) and £479.99 (LTE), while in Australia, it costs AU$799.99 for GPS-only and AU$999.99 for LTE.
Winner: Samsung Galaxy Watch 6. It will always be cheaper than the bigger, beefier Galaxy Watch 5 Pro while sharing many of the same features.
Samsung Galaxy Watch 6 vs Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro: specifications
|Header Cell - Column 0||Samsung Galaxy Watch 6 (41mm)||Samsung Galaxy Watch 6 (44mm)||Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro|
|Case and bezel||Aluminium armor, graphite||Aluminium armor, graphite||Titamium with sapphire crystal glass|
|Display||1.3-inch, 432 x 432 px super AMOLED||1.5-inch, 480 x 480 px super AMOLED||1.4-inch 450 x 450 px super AMOLED|
|Chipset||Exynos W930 (5 nm)||Exynos W930 (5 nm)||Exynos W920 (5 nm)|
|Navigation||GPS, Glonass, Beidou and Galileo||GPS, Glonass, Beidou and Galileo||GPS, Glonass, Beidou and Galileo|
|Battery life||40 hours||40 hours||80 hours|
Samsung Galaxy Watch 6 vs Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro: design and build quality
Samsung Galaxy Watch 6’s design differs from the Watch 5 Pro in several important ways, which will inevitably indicate how the watch is used. The Galaxy Watch 6 is 20% lighter and 30% slimmer, with more screen. It sports a slender bezel, thinner than the Watch 5 Pro and even thinner than the baseline Watch 5. This leaves room for the screen to take up more space, and it makes for an attractive-looking watch. The 1.3-inch and 1.5-inch AMOLED screens look great with this extra real estate, and less of the watch is devoted to the aluminium and graphite casing.
The Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro looks very different. Even on the specs above, you can see that even though the watch is bigger, the screen is slightly smaller than the 44mm Galaxy Watch 6’s display. That extra space is taken up by a raised bezel, which protects the watch face from bangs and scratches it might face on your adventures. Combined with its titanium case, it changes the watch from something you might leave at home during a camping trip to something that can handle anything you can throw at it.
Titanium, as we’re sure you’ve gathered, is harder and stronger than aluminium, which is why the casing is more prominent and able to be used to protect the display more effectively. Both devices have a display made of hard sapphire scratch-resistant crystal glass, but the Watch 5 Pro gets this bonus protection. Imagine the Watch 6 as a sleek, sporty vehicle, whereas the Watch 5 Pro is an all-terrain Land Rover Defender.
While the Watch 6 looks great in terms of design, the Watch 5 Pro wins out when it comes to build quality. However, the Watch 6’s innards surpass the Watch 5 Pro’s, with an updated Exynos W930 chipset with increased processing power, said to have an 18% faster clock speed than the W920.
Winner: Samsung Galaxy Watch 6
Samsung Galaxy Watch 6 vs Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro: features
The Galaxy Watch 6, as you might expect, added a couple of new features in the year since the Watch 5 series debut, even if they’re relatively minor ones. It retains the sleep scores and interesting sleep coaching features of previous years, assigning you a Sleep Animal or “chronotype” and offering you personalised advice on how to get a better night’s sleep. However, previously, you had to go into your phone to get that information, whereas now it’s all right there on your watch.
The new Custom Workouts feature allows you to create multi-stage workouts, cycling through each stage with a press of a button – for example, moving from swimming to cycling or running to strength training. This will be great for all sorts of people, from triathletes to normal gym-goers doing interval training.
Mof the other changes have come from Samsung’s One UI Watch 5 operating system, which is also available on the Watch 5 series, so we won’t dive into much more detail here. On the Watch 5 Pro, you have the advanced navigation features required for such a sporty watch: TrackBack allows you to end your exercise route early and reverse your steps, following your directions on the watch until you return to the start. You can also load a GPX map of an area on the watch, just like you can with a Garmin watch, so you can follow directions around a designated route. Very handy for trail running.
Otherwise, there are similar hardware and software features on both devices: a bioelectric sensor allows you to measure fat and muscle mass in your body, there are loads of workout profiles available for all kinds of activities, and both share the same comprehensive sleep tracking tech, calls, notifications, custom watch faces and third-party apps.
Winner: Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro. When you add the full list of features together, the Galaxy Watch 6 looks like a minor upgrade compared to the advanced GPS features of the Galaxy Watch 5 Pro. The two watches share so much DNA that it’s a close-run thing, but the Galaxy Watch 5 Pro just edges it.
Samsung Galaxy Watch 6 vs Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro: battery life
This is going to be a relatively concise section because it’s an easy one. Samsung Galaxy Watch 6 comes in two different sizes with two different batteries. The screens are also sizes different, with the larger one outputting enough power that both are billed to last up to 40 hours. Expect to get less than that if you’re doing GPS workouts like running and using the watch’s always-on display.
On the other hand, the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro is billed at up to 80 hours. Even with GPX files and Route Workouts sucking power as it stretches its signal out to satellites to guide you through your latest hike, you can expect to charge the watch, work out all day, sleep, wake up, check your recovery and do another session the next day, all on a single charge. This is a watch better suited for weekend warriors.
Winner: Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro.
Samsung Galaxy Watch 6 vs Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro: verdict
Which watch is going to be better for you? Both smartwatches will operate seamlessly with your Samsung Galaxy phone – that's a given.
Want a beautiful design and better processing power for a cheaper cost? Get the Galaxy Watch 6, which is the best option for people who don't need their watch also to be the best running watch.
However, if you're a keen endurance exerciser who wants long-lasting activity tracking capability like a Garmin watch, the Galaxy Watch 5 Pro is tailor-made for you. It has a longer battery life and doesn't cost much more than the Galaxy Watch 6, which might make it more appealing.