Samsung’s Galaxy Gear is among the first smart watches to be released by a major mobile phone manufacturer and is intended to lead the way in the emerging field of wearable, connected technology. The new Samsung Galaxy Gear Smart watch lets you take calls, send texts, and perform various other tasks from your wrist without touching your phone.
The Gear has no SIM card or data connection of its own. Instead, it links to your phone over Bluetooth, acting more as an external display so you don’t have to fish your phone out every time it rings.
The smart watch works with a range of Samsung devices such as the Galaxy S4, S3, Note 2 and Note 3, that’s few compatible devices. Those of you who have splashed out on a HTC One, Apple iPhone 5S or Sony Xperia Z1 will be out of luck.
There’s only a single button on the watch itself, which acts to power up the display, or fires up Samsung’s S Voice software with a double click. Navigating around the watch is done using the touch-enabled display. The 1.6-inch display might be miniature, but its 320×320-pixel resolution is sharp enough to make small text easily readable. It’s also vivid enough to let you enjoy the photos you’ve snapped with the camera in the strap.
The Samsung Galaxy Gear smartwatch is attractive, comfortable, and makes it easy to see incoming calls. However, a lack of e-mail and social network support, limited compatibility with other devices, the external charging case, and hit-and-miss voice control seriously limit its usefulness.
So, Samsung’s take on the smartwatch has potential, and it does get some things right, but its inability to perform truly “smart” functions means it falls short of expectations. With online prices ranging from £200 – £250 it’s an expensive mobile phone accessory and is probably more attractive to gadget fans than corporate users looking for genuinely useful technology.