Samsung Watch 5 and Apple Watch SE are priced within the same range between $249-$309.99. Both watches present as credible alternatives for someone in the market for a decent watch. We look at the key decision points that will help you decide about choosing Apple Watch SE or Samsung Watch 5.
Android or iOS – Samsung Watch 5 vs Apple Watch SE
Samsung Watch 5 is based on Google’s wear OS or wear operating system. Samsung Watch 5 works on the Android operating system only. Samsung Watch 5 is compatible with Android operating system version 8 or higher. It cannot be registered through an iPhone. So, if you have an Apple ecosystem phone, Samsung Watch 5 is not meant for you.
Apple Watch SE can only work with iOS devices. As of writing this, an Apple Watch SE cannot work with Android mobile operating system.
This leaves us with a simple question to answer. Do we have an Android device or iOS device that will pair with the smartwatch? The answer to this query will, most likely, decide your next watch.
It is a different matter, though, for people with both Android and iPhone mobile devices.
ECG App – Samsung Watch 5 vs Apple Watch SE
Apple Watch SE is a budget watch from Apple. It does not come with ECG feature. Samsung Watch 5 comes with an ECG app that can work with the Samsung Health app. You can take on-demand ECG through a Samsung Watch 5. The only caveat is that Samsung’s ECG app is supported in specific countries. You may want to check if ECG is supported on Samsung Watch 5 in your country.
Pulse Oxygenation – Samsung Watch 5 vs Apple Watch SE
Samsung Watch 5 does measure the blood oxygenation or saturation levels through the pulse oxygenation sensor. Apple Watch SE, however, lacks the feature of measuring blood oxygenation levels. Oxygen saturation levels are an important part of health monitoring and tracking.
AMOLED Display – Samsung Watch 5 vs Apple Watch SE
Samsung Watch 5 has a Super AMOLED display. Apple Watch SE also has an OLED display. The difference, however, lies in the display resolution. Samsung Watch 5 has a display resolution of 450 x 450 pixels for the 44 mm variant. Apple Watch SE has a display resolution of 368 x 448 pixels.
Samsung Watch 5’s improved display resolution comes inspite of smaller size of the display of the watch in comparison with Apple Watch SE. Apple Watch SE has a display size of 1.78″ and Samsung Watch 5 (44 mm) has a display size of 1.4″.
Another quick thing about Samsung Watch 5 is the fact that it supports Always on Display or AOD. Apple Watch SE does not support ‘Always on Display’.
Fall Detection – Samsung Watch 5 vs Apple Watch SE
If you are open to getting a Samsung Watch 5 or Apple Watch SE, you may consider the fall detection feature of both watches. Fall detection is important, especially, for elders. Apple has the best fall detection feature around. No watch comes close to the fall detection mechanism of an Apple Watch. This includes the Apple Watch SE. If fall detection is one of the primary goals, you should consider an Apple Watch SE over the Samsung Watch 5. Samsung does offer incident detection feature. But, Apple has had a proven track record as far as fall detection feature is concerned.
LTE – Samsung Watch 5 vs Apple Watch SE
LTE allows you to connect to network providers directly from the watch. Samsung Watch 5 has LTE variants for 40 mm and 44 mm size smartwatches. Apple Watch SE has cellular options to help you connect to a network provider from the smartwatch directly.
Storage – Samsung Watch 5 vs Apple Watch SE
Samsung Watch 5 comes with 16 GB storage on the classic 40 mm or 44 mm variant. Apple Watch SE has an internal storage of 32 GB. Internal storage of a smartwatch is useful for storing personal audio content for offline listening. You could also use the storage for downloading stuff like maps on the watch.
Swimming – Samsung Watch 5 vs Apple Watch SE
Samsung Watch 5 is an IP68 certified smartwatch. It also comes with a 5 ATM rating for swimming. On a similar note, Apple Watch SE is swim proof. This is equivalent to the 5 ATM water resistance rating on the Apple Watch SE.
Both watches, however, are suitable for pool swimming or shallow water swimming. We suggest not to use Apple Watch SE or Samsung Watch 5 for deep water activities, scuba diving, snorkeling or high speed water sports.
Price – Samsung Watch 5 vs Apple Watch SE
Apple Watch SE has been discounted to a great extent. It is available for a price of $249. At this price, the watch does not make a lot of sense for iPhone owners. Samsung Watch 5 comes for a starting price of $309.99. However, Samsung has thrown in an exchange offer. You could get deep discounts on a Samsung Watch 5 if you have a working smartwatch worthy of an exchange.
Battery – Samsung Watch 5 vs Apple Watch SE
There are no big winners when it comes to battery of a Samsung Watch 5 or Apple Watch SE. Apple Watch SE’s battery can last for up to 18 hours. Samsung Watch 5 can last a bit longer. However, both watches support fast charging. Samsung can charge up to 40% in less than 45 minutes. The same holds true for an Apple Watch SE>
Other Features – Samsung Watch 5 vs Apple Watch SE
Samsung Watch 5 does not have a few additional health tracking features. We list these for your ready reference below:
- Samsung Watch 5 can track calorie intake.
- Samsung Watch 5 can track water intake.
- Samsung Watch 5 can track your body weight.
- Samsung Watch 5 has a ‘Golf’ variant to support Golf pros and enthusiasts.
- Apple Watch SE has a cadence sensor
Closing Thoughts – Samsung Watch 5 vs Apple Watch SE
For iPhone owners, I will always prefer an Apple Watch SE over the Samsung Watch 5. There are no integration issues and the performance of Apple Watch SE is beyond acceptable. For Android mobile owners, Samsung Watch 5 is the only option as Apple Watch SE does not support Android smartphones.
For someone who has an iPhone and an Android smartphone, I will still lean in favor of Apple Watch SE. I like the shape, and overall reliability of an Apple Watch SE smartwatch.
You may like to read more about Apple and Samsung smartwatches below:
- Can I wear Apple Watch 7 swimming?
- Apple Watch SE vs Garmin Forerunner 255
- Does Samsung Watch 4 connect to iPhone?
- Can I swim with Samsung Watch 4?
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Helen Kurt is a geeky nerd who loves to cover the wearables space. She has over 5 years of experience in the smartwatch domain. You can reach her on email at [email protected].