Amazfit GTR 4, a serious competitor to the Apple Watch and Galaxy Watch

For many buyers, the choice when buying a smartwatch comes down to two brands: Apple and Samsung. On the one hand, the Apple Watch and the Galaxy Watch represent more than half of the smartwatch market; on the other, “all the others”, including Amazfit. And while it’s true that the Chinese company hasn’t launched any big bucks in the past, its latest smartwatches are noteworthy, particularly for the price. The new Amazfit GTR 4 and GTS 4 follow this line, placing themselves as a valid alternative to the usual suspects.

Amazfit GTR 4 does not have adequate support for apps and does not allow you to interact well with incoming notifications. However, it makes up for these shortcomings with a commendable design, good battery life, and reliable activity tracking. Then there are some unique additions, such as support for Alexa at a reasonable price of 199 euros. Amazfit GTR 4 hardware is excellent. It is built to compete with the more expensive smartwatches on the market. It has a thin and light body, making it more comfortable to wear than the Amazfit T-Rex 2. The body is made of an aluminium alloy which gives the whole an excellent fit and finish.

The watch features a water resistance of 5 atmospheres and has tempered glass on the top of the display for protection. Instead, the dial is an AMOLED panel, making you feel like you’re using a high-end device. It displays crisp graphics and is as responsive as many other premium smartwatches. It also gets bright enough to be used outdoors in direct sunlight, which is crucial in these last remnants of autumn. The GTR 4 also supports the always-on display function, which shows the time and some complications while keeping the rest of the display dark.

The Amazfit GTR 4 runs the “Zepp OS 2.0” platform, which is very lean but functional. What I love most is that the OS is simple to use. You quickly get used to the various menus and settings, although something could be presented better, such as the app carousel. One limitation is that the watch only offers a few options for interacting with incoming notifications from the smartphone. And this is one of the biggest drawbacks of Zepp OS. Replies to messages, for example, are based on preset texts, which need to be more intuitive and complete. Displaying a keypad would have been simple and straightforward.

The Amazfit GTR 4 integrates a 475 mAh battery, lasting about ten days on a single charge. It is not quite the two-week duration promised by Amazfit, but we are light years ahead of Apple and Samsung. Even with the GTR 4’s always-on display function, perhaps the biggest catalyst for battery drain, the watch performs well in terms of battery life. The T-Rex 2 certainly had better battery life, but the GTR 4 is relatively thinner and more traditional looking.

The Zepp app offers a metric called Personal Activity Intelligence (PAI), calculated based on your heart rate. Essentially, increasing the frequency through exercise will increase the PAI, and if you reach a score of 100 PAI per day, you are on the right track. While you can’t download third-party apps, you can sync your data with Apple Health, Google Fit, and Strava.

Amazfit GTR 4 is the best buy for those on a tight budget who want a smartwatch that doesn’t have to charge daily. It may not offer all the trappings of a Galaxy Watch 5 or Apple Watch Series 8. Still, it includes everything you need to act as a useful daily accessory to read notifications and track physical activity, even with essential metrics including oxygen level. in blood, sleep, heart rate and more. The lack of Google support and a good family of apps is a limitation for advanced users. Still, Amazfit focuses more on the basic functionality of the smartwatch than on how to make it a small smartphone. Which is what the greats are aiming for, not always rightly.

Antonino Caffo has been involved in journalism, particularly technology, for fifteen years. He is interested in topics related to the world of IT security but also consumer electronics. Antonino writes for the most important Italian generalist and trade publications. You can see him, sometimes, on television explaining how technology works, which is not as trivial for everyone as it seems.