These One UI 5 features give us a first look at Samsung's upcoming Galaxy Watches

New sleep, fitness, and safety features are coming later this year, starting with Samsung's expected Galaxy Watch 6 series.
Written by Kerry Wan, Senior Reviews Editor
Person interacting with the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro
June Wan/ZDNET

Samsung today unveiled the latest version of its One UI Watch software, with a focus on sleep tracking, fitness, and safety features. 

One UI 5 Watch, which will be available to download on compatible Galaxy Watch models later this year, delivers a "comprehensive health experience" that will "help people improve the quality of their sleep" said Hon Pak, Vice President and Head of Digital Health Team, MX Business at Samsung Electronics, in a press release.

Also: Galaxy Watch 5 finally gets temperature-based cycle tracking update

That starts with the new Sleep Insights UI, a dedicated watch portal that displays users' sleep scores in clear view while providing related insights like sleep phases, snoring hours, and blood oxygen levels. Galaxy Watch owners will also be able to access Sleep Coaching, a feature first introduced with the Galaxy Watch 4 series, directly from their wearable. Sleep Coaching was previously only accessible via the Samsung Health app.

Samsung Galaxy Watch One UI 5 sleep features

Sleep Insights now makes it clearer what your sleep score is, and Sleep Coaching can be accessed directly from the watch.


To reduce distractions at night, when the Galaxy Watch detects the user in deep sleep, it will automatically turn off other IoT devices in the house via SmartThings. Sleep Mode will also play a role here, muting notifications and sounds from both the watch and the user's phone, while switching the wearable's tracking to its infrared sensor instead of the typical green LED that blinks aggressively.

Also: These sound machines can actually help you fall asleep faster

For fitness, One UI 5 Watch introduces Personalized Heart Rate Zone, an analytical tool that establishes five levels of intensity based on your workout statistics. (It's similar to Heart Rate Zones on the Apple Watch.) Naturally, these levels will be integrated across various exercises like running, giving users an idea of what workout regimen works best for warming up, burning fat, and more intensive goals.

Heart Rate Zone demo on One UI 5 Watch

Personalized Heart Rate Zones serve as visual indicators of your workout's intensity. 


Galaxy Watch Pro owners can take advantage of additional benefits like an improved Route Workout that can track both running and walking on top of the standard hiking and cycling options. And if you're vested in route logs, you will soon be able to search and access the GPX File Database right from the Samsung Health app. That's a step up from the current process which involves going on a computer.

Also: Trying to get into running? This gadget can help your recovery time

Lastly, One UI 5 Watch brings enhancements to the SOS feature, allowing users to communicate and relay their location to emergency services, while also providing immediate access to their medical information. Fall Detection will also be enabled by default for users who are aged 55 or older.

Also: The best Android smartwatches right now 

The new software features will first be accessible on Samsung's upcoming Galaxy Watch Series, which is expected to consist of the Galaxy Watch 6 and Galaxy Watch 6 Pro. In the meantime, users who own a Samsung wearable from the past two generations and reside in either the U.S. or Korea can register for the One UI 5 beta via the Samsung Members app.

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