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Does the Samsung Galaxy Watch Ultra work with the iPhone?

The Samsung Galaxy Watch Ultra in black with an orange strap.
Andy Boxall / Digital Trends

The Samsung Galaxy Watch Ultra is official following Samsung’s Galaxy Unpacked event in Paris this week. The Galaxy Watch Ultra was launched alongside the Galaxy Watch 7 and Samsung’s new foldable devices – the Fold 6 and Flip 6. It was also unveiled alongside the Galaxy Buds 3 and the Samsung Galaxy Ring. There were no major surprises here, as the Galaxy Watch Ultra was largely the device that had been rumored leading up to the event.

With its release, the Galaxy Watch Ultra is now the main competitor to the Apple Watch Ultra 2 with its 1.5-inch sapphire glass Super AMOLED screen, Exynos W1000 processor and larger 590mAh battery. But despite all the similarities to Apple’s Ultra smartwatch, does the Galaxy Watch Ultra actually work with the iPhone? Here’s what you need to know.

Does the Galaxy Watch Ultra work with the iPhone?

Joe Maring / Digital Trends

The Galaxy Watch Ultra doesn’t work with any iPhone model. This isn’t surprising, as the latest Galaxy Watches, including the Galaxy Watch 4, Galaxy Watch 5, and Galaxy Watch 6, were all incompatible with the iPhone. This is because Samsung has moved away from its Tizen operating system, and all of these smartwatches, including the Galaxy Watch Ultra, require Google Play Services to work – which iPhone owners can’t access.

This should come as no surprise either. Typically, there is very little cross-platform compatibility between Android and iOS when it comes to accessories. The OnePlus Watch 2 won’t work with an iPhone because it requires the OHealth app. The AirPods also work with Android devices, but they lack many features, including easy pairing, spatial audio, Find My tracking, auto-EQ, and more.

If you own an iPhone and want to use a Samsung smartwatch for some reason, you’ll need to get an older device like the Galaxy Watch 2 Active or Gear S3. However, most iPhone users are better off with an Apple Watch like the Apple Watch SE, Apple Watch Series 9, or Apple Watch Ultra 2. They’ll give you a better experience with the full ability to use all the health and fitness tracking features.

Does the Galaxy Watch Ultra work with any Android phone?

Andy Boxall / Digital Trends

The Galaxy Watch Ultra should work with any Android phone running Android 8.0 and above and at least 1.5GB of RAM. Of course, it should also work with most, if not all, Samsung phones, including the latest Galaxy Z Fold 6 and Galaxy Z Flip 6. In fact, you’ll probably be able to get a bundle deal for both devices. If you’re using the Watch Ultra with a non-Samsung phone, you’ll need to download the Samsung Wearable and Samsung Health apps to use all of its features and gain full control over watch faces and settings.

The Galaxy Watch Ultra has an IP68 water and dust resistance rating, which means it can withstand submersion in water. It is water resistant up to 50 meters (10 ATM) and has a MIL-STD-810H rating, which means it has passed a series of lab tests for durability. It will run Samsung One UI Watch 6.0 and support Bluetooth 5.3, dual-band Wi-Fi, NFC and dual-frequency GPS.

You can pre-order the Samsung Galaxy Watch Ultra now for $650.

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