Navigate your Galaxy Watch4 and Galaxy Watch5 series

Girl using Galaxy Watch5

The WearOS operating system on the Galaxy Watch4 and Galaxy Watch5 series comes with improved ways to navigate the watch's interface. For instance, swiping in different directions on the Home screen will let you open your notifications, the Quick settings panel, and apps, so you can find what you need right away. The keys on your watch can be customized to launch your favorite apps and services, such as Bixby, Find My Phone, Samsung Health, and Google Fit trackers. You can even change the watch face as often as you like!

First time setup

Before you can access everything your Galaxy Watch4 or Galaxy Watch5 series has to offer, you'll need to go through the initial setup. To do this, make sure you have a phone with the Galaxy Wearable app installed.

Once you've set up the watch, it's a good idea to adjust its notification settings. That way, you won't miss anything important, such as alerts when your watch is done downloading new apps.

Take a tour of your watch with Start button displayed

Note: The Galaxy Watch4 and Galaxy Watch5 series will require a phone to complete setup. These models cannot be set up as standalone devices.

Use the Home screen

Note: To view more information about navigating your watch, open the Galaxy Wearable app on the connected phone, and then tap Tips and user manual.

The Home screen on your Galaxy Watch4 and Galaxy Watch5 series isn’t just for letting you know the time. You can use swipe gestures on the screen to move around your watch’s content, like its apps, notifications, and settings.

Review the list below to learn more about navigating around your watch:

  • Swipe left to view your tiles, also known as widgets on previous models.

  • Swipe right to view your notifications.

  • Swipe down to open the Quick settings panel.

  • Swipe up to view your apps.

Different watch content on Galaxy Watch5
  • Return to the previous screen by swiping right from the edge of the screen, or by pressing the Back key.

    Note: You can customize the Back key to show recent apps or to show the previous screen. Please see the "Customize the watch keys" section for more information.

  • To return to your most recently used app, double press the Home key (Power key).

    Note: You can customize the Home key to launch different apps or functions. Please see the "Customize the watch keys" section for more information.

  • To scroll through a screen, rotate the bezel.

    Note: The Galaxy Watch4, Galaxy Watch5, and Galaxy Watch5 Pro all have digital bezels. The Galaxy Watch4 Classic has a physical bezel.

  • Current ongoing activities, such as a workout, will be shown as an icon at the bottom of your screen. Tap the icon to see more details.

Change the watch face

Need to change up the watch face on your Galaxy Watch4 or Galaxy Watch5 series? You can see the available choices right from the Home screen. New watch faces can also be downloaded from the Play Store on your watch or the connected phone. For more detailed instructions, check out our full guide on managing watch faces.

To see your watch faces, touch and hold the Home screen, and then swipe left or right. Tap a watch face to set it to your watch, or tap Customize to edit the watch face. Keep in mind that the customization options will differ depending on the watch face.

Use the following steps to download new watch faces from the Play Store:

  • On the watch: Navigate to and open the Play Store, swipe to and tap Watch faces, and then tap your desired watch face. Tap Install.

  • On the connected phone: Navigate to and open the Galaxy Wearable app, tap Store, and then tap Explore Wear OS watch faces. Tap your desired watch face, and then tap Install. On the Galaxy Watch5 series, tap Watch faces from the Galaxy Wearable Home screen. 

Add watch face icon highlighted on a Samsung smart watch

Customize the watch keys

The Home key (Power key) on your Galaxy Watch4 and Galaxy Watch5 series can be customized if you’d like it to launch different apps or functions, like Bixby or Maps. This shortcut will help you find your favorite or most-used app without searching through your watch. You can also customize the Back key.

  1. To begin, navigate to and open the Galaxy Wearable app on the connected phone. Tap Watch settings, and then tap Advanced features.

  2. Tap Double press under Home key. From here, you can select your preferred function from the list.

  3. Next, tap Press and hold under Home key. You can select from Wake Bixby or Power off menu. If you have Google Assistant installed, you'll also have an option for Assistant.

    Wake Bixby selected in the Galaxy Wearable app
  4. Finally, tap Short press under Back key to select from "Go to previous screen" or "Show recent apps."

  5. You can change the keys’ functions as often as you like.

Use the watch bezel

Note: To avoid interference, do not use the watch near magnets or when wearing magnetic bracelets. Make sure the bezel area is clear of dust or debris. If the bezel does not work, please take it to a Samsung Service Center without disassembling the watch.

The Galaxy Watch4, Galaxy Watch5, and Galaxy Watch5 Pro have digital scrolling bezels that can be used to navigate the different screens. On the other hand, the Galaxy Watch4 Classic has a physical bezel you can rotate. No matter which model you have, you can access various functions by swiping clockwise or counterclockwise with the bezel.

Here are some common functions:

  • To scroll through the screens, rotate or swipe the bezel left or right.

  • To scroll through items, such as apps, rotate or swipe the bezel to move from item to item.

  • To adjust an input value, such as volume or brightness, rotate or swipe the bezel up or down.

Person navigating Galaxy Watch5 by turning the bezel
  • When receiving a call, rotate or swipe the bezel clockwise to answer the call. Rotate or swipe the bezel counterclockwise to reject the call instead.

  • When using the Alarm feature, swipe the bezel clockwise to dismiss the alarm. Rotate or swipe the bezel counterclockwise to snooze the alarm instead.

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