A budget-friendly Samsung Galaxy Watch FE may land in 2024, new leak

Samsung’s FE series is known for delivering premium features at more accessible price points, effectively balancing quality with affordability. Amidst speculation, a Samsung Galaxy Watch FE could be the latest addition, potentially offering a smartwatch solution that marries high-end functionality with cost-effectiveness. The first mention of the device came a couple of months ago, now some more info has come to light.


What the letters FE stand for

In the context of Samsung’s product lineup, “FE” stands for “Fan Edition.” This designation was initially used with the Galaxy Note 7 FE, targeting fans who missed out on the original Note 7 due to its recall. The FE series aimed to offer a premium experience at a more accessible price point. It essentially serves as a cheaper but still high-quality version of Samsung’s flagship devices. The concept behind the FE series was to address community feedback and cut costs to enhance sales, positioning these devices as a middle ground between the flagship and mid-range segments of the market.

Essential reading: Top fitness trackers and health gadgets

However, the use of “FE” has evolved over time, leading to some confusion among consumers. While the original intent was to cater to fans by offering a premium experience without the flagship price, the distinction between FE models and other Samsung series has become blurred. Some users feel that the FE designation no longer signifies a special edition for fans but rather a lite version of Samsung’s flagship models. This shift reflects a broader strategy to fill the price and quality gap between the mid-range and flagship offerings, although it has sparked debate over whether the FE moniker is being overused or misapplied by Samsung.

So far we’ve seen FE smartphones like the Galaxy S21 and S23, the Tab S9 tablet and Galaxy Buds FE. The one thing that’s been missing from this list is a smartwatch. But that might be about to change.


Samsung Galaxy Watch FE – coming this year?

According to two well known leakers @rqandt and @theGalox_, Samsung is working on a device called Samsung Galaxy Watch FE. This will, reportedly, be a blend between Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 and 5. More precisely, it will be the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4, but with an updated chip and some other minor changes.

Yesterday, the confirmation for this came from Android Headlines. They spotted, what looks to be, a regulatory finding that mentions Galaxy Watch FE by name. A few variants are listed including SM-R866F, SM-R866N, and SM-R886U. The letters are the distinctions for global, US and South Korean regional variants of the device. So not totally separate editions.

As far as a potential launch date, the device could potentially land before the Galaxy Watch 7 series which is expected in late July or early August. Or it could be launched alongside the next generation watch lineup.

Samsung-Galaxy-Watch-4
Samsung Galaxy Watch 4

Why this is not as crazy as it sounds

Bringing back the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 with a few tweaks might sound nuts at first. But, if you really think about it, it’s not that out there.

Just look at Apple. They’ve been rocking an SE version in their Apple Watch lineup for ages. A cheaper Galaxy Watch FE could totally take on that, plus all those less pricey smartwatches from Garmin, Fitbit, Mobvoi, and Zepp Health’s Amazfit range. With the success of the FE concept in its smartphone line, Samsung has the potential to replicate this in the smartwatch sector.

Launching a Samsung Galaxy Watch FE makes strategic sense, especially when considering the current landscape of the smartwatch market. By introducing a Fan Edition of the Galaxy Watch, Samsung could effectively bridge the gap between high-end functionality and affordability. This move would cater to a significant portion of consumers who are looking for premium features—such as comprehensive health tracking, seamless integration with the Samsung ecosystem, and a stylish design—without the flagship price tag.

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