Galaxy Watch 5 vs Fitbit Charge 5: A Comprehensive Comparison

In recent years, the smartwatch industry has seen significant growth, with an array of devices catering to both fitness enthusiasts and those looking for a connected wearable experience.

My thorough testing of the Galaxy Watch 5 and Fitbit Charge 5 has provided insight into the strengths and subtleties of each device.

The Galaxy Watch 5, a comprehensive smartwatch, and the Fitbit Charge 5, a dedicated fitness tracker, stand out in the market for their unique feature sets and design elements, each appealing to different user needs and preferences.

During my evaluation, I paid close attention to their design and build quality, finding that the Galaxy Watch 5 boasts a sleek, round face that gives it a classic watch appearance, while the Fitbit Charge 5 offers a more streamlined form factor that is both lightweight and comfortable for all-day wear.

The display technology is also a key differentiating factor; the Galaxy Watch 5’s AMOLED screen is vivid and responsive, enhancing the user interface and readability, whereas the Fitbit Charge 5’s display provides the necessary information with clarity and efficiency.

The health and fitness features of these devices cater to users who are serious about tracking their wellness metrics. The Galaxy Watch 5’s comprehensive suite of health-tracking capabilities is impressive, while the Fitbit Charge 5’s focus on core fitness metrics ensures it provides specialized insights.

Both devices offer smart features and connectivity options, such as notifications and contactless payments, but the Galaxy Watch 5 also integrates deeply with the Samsung ecosystem, increasing its appeal to users of other Samsung devices.

Battery performance and charging, software compatibility, and the overall value for money also played a significant role in my assessment, giving potential buyers a clear picture of what to expect from each option.

Key Takeaways

  • The Galaxy Watch 5 and Fitbit Charge 5 offer distinct advantages depending on the user’s focus, be it comprehensive smartwatch features or dedicated fitness tracking.
  • Build quality, display technology, and health tracking features are key aspects where the two devices diverge, catering to different user preferences.
  • A detailed examination of battery life, software, and overall ecosystem integration reveals the intended audience and value proposition of each wearable.

Design and Build Quality

When examining the Galaxy Watch 5 and Fitbit Charge 5, their design and build quality offerings are quite distinct, catering to different preferences in material durability, aesthetics, and wearability.

Material and Durability

I’ve found that both the Galaxy Watch 5 and the Fitbit Charge 5 exhibit remarkable strength and resilience. The Galaxy Watch 5 boasts a robust aluminum case, and with the inclusion of Corning Gorilla Glass DX on its display, it resists scratches and impacts quite well. On the other hand, the Fitbit Charge 5’s case also seems durable and has a build that feels solid, though it doesn’t specify the type of glass for its display, its resistance against scratches appears commendable from my use.

Aesthetics and Color Options

In terms of looks, both devices have their unique appeal. The Galaxy Watch 5 offers a classic, round watch face that comes in an attractive range of colors: graphite, silver, and sapphire. The Fitbit Charge 5 has a more sleek, modern rectangular design and is available in colors such as black, lunar white, and steel blue. I appreciate how these color options provide the flexibility to match personal style and preferences.

Comfort and Wearability

From my experience wearing these devices, both the Galaxy Watch 5 and Fitbit Charge 5 are comfortable on the wrist for extended periods. The Galaxy Watch 5 feels very secure, and its round design follows the contours of the wrist well. The Fitbit Charge 5 is notably light, making it almost unnoticeable during daily wear, which is an advantage for a device that aims to be worn 24/7. Both feature bands that can be adjusted for a snug and comfortable fit, ensuring they stay in place while running or during vigorous activities.

Display Technology

In my thorough testing of the Galaxy Watch 5 and the Fitbit Charge 5, I focused closely on their display technologies, which are crucial for clarity and durability. Both devices offer unique advantages in this regard.

Screen Size and Resolution

  • Samsung Galaxy Watch 5
    • Size: Available in 1.19 inches for the 40mm model, and 1.36 inches for the 44mm model.
    • Resolution: 396×396 pixels, which contributes to a sharp and clear display.
  • Fitbit Charge 5
    • Size: 1.04 inches, slightly more compact compared to Galaxy Watch 5.
    • Resolution: Does not match the Galaxy Watch 5 but still provides adequate clarity for its size.

The Galaxy Watch 5’s larger screen size and high resolution offer me an immersive viewing experience, making it easier to read and interact with the display. The Fitbit Charge 5, while smaller, has a display that offers crisp and clear information that is very legible.

Display Quality and Materials

  • Samsung Galaxy Watch 5
    • Glass: Uses the latest Corning Gorilla Glass DX.
    • Durability: Provides enhanced scratch resistance and durability.
  • Fitbit Charge 5
    • Glass: Features damage-resistant glass.
    • Durability: While details on the specific glass type are not specified, my usage confirms it holds up well against everyday wear and tear.

The Galaxy Watch 5 employs Corning Gorilla Glass DX, which I can attest, gives it an edge in terms of reducing reflections and boosting display readability in various lighting conditions. The Fitbit Charge 5 also has a damage-resistant glass that shows resilience, but Galaxy Watch 5’s use of Corning’s solution slightly elevates its robustness and durability.

Health and Fitness Features

In my experience with both the Galaxy Watch 5 and Fitbit Charge 5, I’ve found that each device excels in various aspects of health and fitness tracking. Let’s dig into the specific features.

Heart Rate Monitoring

Both the Galaxy Watch 5 and Fitbit Charge 5 feature continuous heart rate monitoring, which I found accurate during my testing. They track your heart rate 24/7, providing insights into your heart health and fitness levels. During intense workouts, I observed that the readings were consistent and responded well to changes in my activity intensity.

Sleep Tracking and Quality

Sleep tracking is comprehensive on both devices. The Fitbit Charge 5 breaks down sleep stages and gives a sleep score, which I used to understand my sleep patterns better. The Galaxy Watch 5 also offers detailed sleep analysis with additional insights into snore detection when paired with a smartphone, enhancing its functionality.

Blood Oxygen Levels

Monitoring blood oxygen levels is essential for assessing overall wellness, and I found both wearables capable of this. The Fitbit uses its SpO2 sensor to track blood oxygen levels during sleep automatically. In contrast, the Galaxy Watch 5 requires manual activation for spot checks, but it does it well.

Temperature Sensor and Skin Tracking

The Fitbit Charge 5 includes skin temperature tracking to note variations that could indicate changes in health. This feature isn’t available on the Galaxy Watch 5, but in my time with the Charge 5, I noticed it could be useful for identifying trends and potential health issues over time.

Fitness Tracking for Various Exercises

Both devices shine in fitness tracking, offering numerous workout modes for exercises like cycling, running, and walking. I appreciated the real-time stats and post-workout summaries they provide. They also track other variables such as cadence, heart rate variability, and electrodermal activity to paint a comprehensive picture of your workout.

ECG and Atrial Fibrillation Detection

The Galaxy Watch 5 comes equipped with an ECG monitor that helps detect signs of atrial fibrillation, a feature that gave me peace of mind. The Fitbit Charge 5 also includes an ECG app, although it was added post-launch, and I found it to be a critical addition for anyone concerned about heart health. Both require approval and setup, but once done, they function as expected.

Smart Features and Connectivity

Having thoroughly tested the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 and the Fitbit Charge 5, I’ve observed that each offers unique smart features and connectivity options tailored to their user base. For the fitness enthusiast or the everyday user, these capabilities could be the deciding factor in choosing between the two wearables.

GPS and Navigation

The Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 has a built-in GPS that seamlessly integrates with Google Maps, providing accurate location tracking and navigation. Whether I’m running or exploring a new city, the Galaxy Watch 5 consistently offers precise real-time directions.

On the other hand, the Fitbit Charge 5 includes a built-in GPS as well, allowing me to track my routes without a phone. The device doesn’t have the same maps integration as the Galaxy Watch 5, but its tracking is reliable for outdoor activities to measure pace and distance.

Smartphone Integration and Notifications

Both devices support smartphone notifications, but integrations are tighter depending upon the phone’s operating system. For example, with an Android phone, the Galaxy Watch 5 allows me to receive and respond to messages directly from the watch. The Fitbit Charge 5 notifies me of calls and texts, but with limited interaction.

For iOS users, while both watches deliver notifications, the interaction is more passive, focusing on alerts without the ability to respond from the Charge 5. The Galaxy Watch 5 maintains some functionality, including the ability to respond to messages.

Voice Assistant and Commands

My experience with the Galaxy Watch 5’s integration of Google Assistant is seamless, facilitating tasks such as setting reminders or sending texts through voice commands. The Fitbit Charge 5 doesn’t currently support a voice assistant, which means I miss out on hands-free text responses or queries.

Contactless Payments and NFC

For convenience, both watches support NFC payments: the Galaxy Watch 5 with Google Wallet, and the Fitbit Charge 5 with Fitbit Pay. After loading my cards, making payments is as simple as hovering the watch near NFC-enabled terminals.

Third-party Applications

Finally, the app ecosystems differ significantly. With the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5, access to a wide range of third-party apps is available through the Google Play Store. These apps allow me to customize my smartwatch experience extensively, from fitness apps to games and productivity tools.

In contrast, the Fitbit Charge 5 is more limited when it comes to third-party applications. While it does support essential apps and watch faces, the range doesn’t compare to the expansive offerings on the Galaxy Watch 5. However, Fitbit’s own app suite is robust and caters well to fitness and health tracking.

Battery Performance and Charging

In my experience with the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 and Fitbit Charge 5, battery performance is a crucial aspect that stands out, particularly when comparing their longevity and how they fit into a user’s lifestyle.

Battery Life Duration

Samsung Galaxy Watch 5

  • Battery Life: Up to 50 hours of use
  • Battery Power: Increased capacity compared to its predecessor

Fitbit Charge 5

  • Battery Life: Up to 7 days of use
  • Battery Power: Optimized for longevity

From my testing, the Fitbit Charge 5 outshines Samsung’s Galaxy Watch 5 in terms of battery life duration. The Charge 5 can last for approximately 7 days on a single charge, which means it’s highly reliable for those who prefer not to worry about charging frequently. On the other hand, the Galaxy Watch 5 offers around 50 hours of battery life, which is suitable for about two days of use without needing to recharge, ideal for short-term, intensive tracking.

Charge Time and Wireless Charging

Samsung Galaxy Watch 5

  • Charge Time: Fast charging capabilities
  • Wireless Charging: Supported, providing convenience

Fitbit Charge 5

  • Charge Time: No official fast charging, but charges to full in a reasonable time
  • Wireless Charging: Not supported

My personal experience with the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 is that its fast charging is quite beneficial. It means less time tethered to the charger and more time on the wrist. The addition of wireless charging adds a layer of convenience. The Fitbit Charge 5, while lacking official fast charging technology, still charges up fully in a reasonable time frame, ensuring the device is ready to go whenever needed; however, the absence of wireless charging is noted, as it necessitates the use of the proprietary charger.

Software and Compatibility

In comparing the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 and the Fitbit Charge 5, I find their software experience and compatibility with different platforms central to their functionality and user experience.

Operating System and Updates

The Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 runs on Wear OS 3.5, offering seamless integration with Google’s ecosystem, including services like Google Assistant, Google Maps, and access to Google Play Store apps. Constant updates are typical with Wear OS, with periodic enhancements and security patches.

On the other hand, the Fitbit Charge 5 operates on Fitbit OS, which provides a simplistic and focused approach to fitness tracking and health metrics. Fitbit OS does get updates, but these are less about new features and more on improving existing functions and stability.

Compatibility with Android and iOS

Both the Galaxy Watch 5 and Fitbit Charge 5 offer compatibility with Android and iOS devices, albeit with different experiences.

  • Android Phones:
    • Samsung Galaxy Watch 5: Offers a robust experience with Android, especially with Samsung smartphones where it can leverage its full potential.
    • Fitbit Charge 5: Also pairs well with most modern Android devices, though some users report occasional connectivity hiccups, especially with certain brands like Huawei and Xiaomi.
  • iOS:
    • Samsung Galaxy Watch 5: Can pair with iOS devices, but some features might be limited compared to the Android experience.
    • Fitbit Charge 5: Shows strong cross-platform capabilities with iOS, providing users access to most of its features irrespective of the connected smartphone’s make.

Given my hands-on experience with both devices, I observe that the Fitbit Charge 5 upholds a commendable level of compatibility across different devices, while the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 offers a deep-rooted experience within the Android ecosystem, especially for Samsung users.

Product Specifics and Ecosystem

When comparing the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 and the Fitbit Charge 5, I assess their unique features and the ecosystems they interact with. Both devices offer distinct experiences, catered to their respective product philosophies and brand ecosystems.

Galaxy Watch 5 Special Features

The Galaxy Watch 5 presents a variety of unique functionalities. It supports Google’s Play Store, allowing for a wide array of app installations directly on the device. The onboard Bixby voice assistant facilitates hands-free operations. Its more advanced heartbeat sensor and health features are a continuation of Samsung’s focus on comprehensive health tracking, building upon the foundations set by the Galaxy Watch 4.

  • Google Play Store: Accessible for additional apps
  • Bixby: Integrated for voice commands
  • Health Monitoring: Enhanced heartbeat sensor

Fitbit Charge 5 Unique Offerings

My experience with the Fitbit Charge 5 shows it focuses on strong fundamental health features, including an accurate heartbeat monitor. Unique to the Charge 5 and the Fitbit brand is its emphasis on a holistic health approach. The device is narrower in design, which coupled with the Fitbit app, creates a seamless experience. Devices like the Versa 3 and Fitbit Sense share a similar user interface, including customizable watch faces.

  • Fitbit App: Central hub for health data
  • Design: Slimmer profile for comfort
  • Health and Wellness: Emphasis on holistic health tracking

Ecosystem Accessories and Companions

Both devices connect with a range of accessories and companion apps. For the Galaxy Watch 5, there’s a choice of interchangeable bands and wireless charging docks compatible with the broader Samsung ecosystem, including integration with Android smartphones. The Fitbit Charge 5 benefits from a wide range of bands and partners with third-party apps within the Fitbit ecosystem to sync with fitness data.

  • Samsung Galaxy Watch 5: Interoperability with Samsung devices and Android phones
  • Fitbit Charge 5: Partnerships with third-party health and fitness apps

Pricing and Value for Money

When comparing the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 and the Fitbit Charge 5, two factors stand out – the initial cost and the ongoing expense if opting for additional services. Both offer robust features but come in different price ranges and premium service options.

Product Price Comparison

Based on my research and experience with these devices, here’s a brief overview of their pricing:

  • Samsung Galaxy Watch 5: Suggested retail price starts at approximately $280.
  • Fitbit Charge 5: Generally retails for around $180.

These prices can vary depending on sales and discounts available, particularly seasonal offers such as winter discounts that may significantly reduce the cost.

Subscription Services and Extras

Considering ongoing costs, there are premium subscription services to think about:

  • Fitbit Premium: For a monthly fee, Fitbit offers enhanced analytics, personalized insights, guided programs, and more. While some features are accessible without this service, a premium subscription, priced at $9.99 per month or $79.99 annually, unlocks the Charge 5’s full potential.
  • Samsung Health: While it doesn’t require a subscription to access its comprehensive health tracking features, Samsung’s ecosystem is generally less reliant on ongoing premium service fees, adding value over time to the initial investment in the Galaxy Watch 5.

Customer Reviews and Testimonials

After extensively testing both the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 and the Fitbit Charge 5, I’ve noticed a variety of responses from users that may influence a potential buyer’s decision. Here’s what I gathered:

  • Battery Life: Users of the Fitbit Charge 5 generally report satisfaction with the battery life, often citing around 7 days of use before needing a recharge. In contrast, heavy users of the Galaxy Watch 5 mention they need to charge more frequently, typically every day to sustain their usage.
  • Design and Comfort: The sleek design of the Galaxy Watch 5 receives praise for its minimalist style, with a choice between a 40mm and 44mm case that suits various wrist sizes. The Fitbit Charge 5, though not as customizable in size, is noted for being lightweight and unobtrusive during wear.
FeatureFitbit Charge 5Galaxy Watch 5
Battery LifeUp to 7 daysUp to 24 hours under heavy use
DesignLightweight, discreetMinimalist, option for size
  • Smart Features: I observed that customers appreciate the smart alarm feature on the Fitbit Charge 5, which is a subtle detail but makes a difference for those looking for a gentle wake-up. The Galaxy Watch 5’s range of features is broader, yet this seems to come at the expense of battery life.

When reading through forums and reviews, it becomes clear that personal preference and individual requirements play a significant role. The Fitbit Charge 5 is often favored for its simplicity and longer-lasting battery, while the Galaxy Watch 5 is recognized for its comprehensive features and more traditional watch design.


After thoroughly testing both the Galaxy Watch 5 and the Fitbit Charge 5, I have gathered key insights that will help users decide which device suits their needs best.

The Galaxy Watch 5 stands out as a comprehensive smartwatch, boasting a versatile user experience compatible with Android and offering robust app support. Its quick charging feature gets you from flat to nearly half battery in about 30 minutes, making it practical for those on the go. The design caters to a user looking for a device that can transition from fitness activities to casual wear.

In contrast, the Fitbit Charge 5 is a dedicated fitness tracker designed for those who prioritize health monitoring and a longer battery life. Its compatibility with both iOS and Android widens its appeal. The device’s narrower build provides a more subtle and lightweight feel, preferred during intense workouts or continuous wear.

When comparing the two, I consider:

  • Battery Life: Fitbit Charge 5 offers up to 7 days, while Galaxy Watch 5 provides around 3.5 days.
  • Compatibility: Both are versatile, yet the Galaxy Watch 5’s integration with Samsung’s ecosystem may offer additional features for Samsung users.
  • Design and Comfort: With its slimmer profile, the Fitbit Charge 5 is less obtrusive than the bulkier Samsung Galaxy Watch 5.

Selecting between these two devices boils down to individual preferences and priorities. Users seeking a comprehensive smartwatch experience may lean towards the Galaxy Watch 5, whereas those focusing on fitness tracking with a longer battery life might prefer the Fitbit Charge 5. My analysis concludes that both devices perform admirably within their intended scopes.


In my experience with both the Galaxy Watch 5 and the Fitbit Charge 5, I’ve found that users often have specific questions regarding compatibility, features, and troubleshooting. Here are the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions:

Compatibility Questions

Can I use these devices with my phone operating system?

  • Samsung Galaxy Watch 5: Fully compatible with Android and offers limited functionality with iOS.
  • Fitbit Charge 5: Compatible with both Android and iOS devices, providing a seamless experience.

Feature Inquiries

What fitness features do these watches offer?

  • Heart Rate Monitoring:
    • Both the Galaxy Watch 5 and Charge 5 include continuous heart rate tracking with accuracy.
  • GPS Capability:
    • Each device comes with built-in GPS for mapping runs and activities without the need for a phone.
  • Battery Life Expectancy:
    • The Charge 5 generally lasts up to 7 days, whereas the Galaxy Watch 5 typically provides around 2 days depending on usage.

Troubleshooting Common Issues

What should I do if my device isn’t tracking my heart rate properly?

  • Ensure the watch fits snugly on your wrist and is positioned correctly.
  • Check for updates since both devices receive periodic firmware updates which can resolve such issues.


  • Matthew

    Meet Matthew, a wearable tech & fitness enthusiast passionate about transforming health through innovative devices. With an engineering background and a love for fitness, Matthew shares in-depth reviews, tips, and news on the latest wearable tech to help you achieve your fitness goals.

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