Samsung’s making wellness weird with Watch 4 update

All eyes might be on Samsung’s next flagship smartphone, but the tech giant hasn’t forgotten about folks who wear its signature smartwatch every day.

Samsung announced Monday that a new wellness-centric software update for the Galaxy Watch 4 will roll out on Feb. 9, the same day as the Galaxy Unpacked event where the company is expected to reveal the Galaxy S22 line of phones. There are a few new features to…unpack, but first up is the fact that Chris Hemsworth apparently has a fitness service called Centr that Galaxy Watch 4 owners will get a 30-day free trial to as part of this rollout.

As for internal Watch 4 features, Samsung is adding the ability to set interval targets for runners and cyclists. In other words, people who favor that sort of exercise will be able to pre-set duration, distance, and the number of sets they plan on doing during a workout for more granular tracking. 

That’s nice and convenient, but the real meat of the update is a new way to improve your sleep habits. The watch will study your sleep for seven days, ask you to complete a couple of surveys, and then assign you a sort of sleep personality type from a lineup of eight animals. They are as follows:

  • Unconcerned Lion

  • Sensitive Hedgehog

  • Nervous Penguin

  • Sun Averse Mole

  • Cautious Deer

  • Easygoing Walrus

  • Alligator on the Hunt

  • Exhausted Shark

Once the Galaxy Watch 4 uses its sorting hat to give you a name that sounds like a Metal Gear Solid villain, it’ll kick off a wellness program that lasts several weeks and features things like meditations and checklists that should hopefully improve your sleep quality. 

Beyond that, Samsung is bringing streaming via YouTube Music and Google Assistant features to Galaxy Watch 4 via separate updates “in the coming months.” There will also be new watch face colors and fonts, and new watch strap colors like cream and burgundy in case you aren’t happy with how your Galaxy Watch 4 looks. The straps will be sold separately, starting in late February.

I don’t have a Galaxy Watch 4, but I gotta admit, having a watch give me a silly animal name based on my sleep habits is appealing. Personally, I like to think I’m an Unconcerned Lion, but in reality, I’m probably a Sensitive Hedgehog. Folks with Galaxy Watches will be able to find out for themselves in the very near future.

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