Owners of Samsung Galaxy Watch smartwatches are about to receive a bunch of news features, thanks to a software update called One UI Watch4.5.
Coming to compatible devices in the next few months – Samsung says (opens in new tab) it’ll be during the third financial quarter – the update to Wear OS watches will improve typing and accessibility, while also enabling dual SIM support for owners of certain Samsung phones.
For the first time, One UI Watch4.5 brings what Samsung calls a “full typing experience” to its smartwatches.
This means, as with the Apple Watch, a full QWERTY keyboard will be a typing option, with swipe support to make it easier to type on a tiny display; this will join the dictation and handwriting options already available on Samsung watches. Instead of picking an input option in the settings menu, it will be possible to switch between the three modes while composing a message or email.
Secondly, dual-SIM support will let owners of certain Galaxy phones set a preferred SIM for their smartwatch, or have the watch automatically switch to whichever SIM the phone is using. This will be handy for those who have personal and work SIMs in one phone, or who use a pair of SIM cards when travelling between countries.
The Watch4.5 update also brings new ways to customise and save watch faces, whereby two versions of the same face can be saved to your favourites, making it easier to switch between them.
Lastly, a host of new accessibility features promise to improve the Samsung smartwatch interface for owners who are visually impaired. There are settings to help users who are colourblind by adjusting the hue and contrast of the display, making text easier to read, as well as the option for reduced transparency and blur effects across the user interface.
Users with hearing difficulty can adjust the smartwatch’s sound output between the left and right channels of their Bluetooth headphones.
Lastly, Galaxy Watch owners who need help using the touchscreen can extend the duration for screen taps interactions, and set the watch to ignore repeated touches.