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Details on Samsung’s Galaxy Gear Smartwatch Gathered, Shared Before Unveiling

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Let us premise this with “nothing is confirmed,” but according to Gigaom, they have enough information on the upcoming Galaxy Gear smartwatch from Samsung to warrant a post on it. According to their sources, the following info is as close to the real deal as could be without being from Samsung itself, so let’s take a peek at what we have. 

There have been numerous reports of Galaxy Gear to be unveiled alongside the Galaxy Note 3 on September 4 in Berlin. The newest rumor states the same, but that Samsung could also set up a popup shop in Times Square, New York to sell the device sometime after launch. This would allow folks to get some hands-on time with the watch before purchasing, which we as consumers, enjoy very much. Now, onto hardware and software.

From what sources very close to the project state, the watch will feature a built-in camera, connect to your phone via Bluetooth 4.0 LE, sports NFC for bumping/connecting/syncing to your device and feature a full touch OLED display. The display’s resolution is reported to be 320 x 320 and measure in at about 2.5″ diagonally. The watch will be powered by a Exynos dual-core processor, with either Android 4.1 or Android 4.2 as its OS. Several variants running different software have apparently been sent to third party developers, so it’s hard to say which exact version of Android the watch will come running. Although, it was reported that the device would have some excellent battery life, so that is good to hear.

Galaxy Gear

As for software, word is that Samsung will not allow for Galaxy Gear apps to be downloaded off of Google Play, but instead be downloaded from their own App store. For this reason, it makes complete sense that Samsung would be sending out developer units to make sure they have a solid amount of simple applications prepared to go live on their own servers for when the time comes. Although, with that said, if apps are not coming from Google Play, you can expect the Galaxy Gear to only work with Samsung phones and not other Android devices from different OEMs. That could be a downer, but pretty much makes perfect sense from Samsung’s end.

As for what we hope to see in Galaxy Gear, in order for us to enjoy a smartwatch, we want useful features and apps, a smooth user experience and to receive some joy out of actually using it. We want to want to wear this device. We aren’t looking for just another extension of our phones, but a device that helps us complete tasks, while also looking good.

What would you want out of a smartwatch that you don’t already see on the market?

Via: Gigaom

  • Marc Winnig

    I want it to serve as the “Dick Tracey” phone. It can (of course and no doubt will HAVE to) connect to the Note 3 to do this, but it needs to become the speaker phone, blue-tooth “headset”, etc. so the large phone does not need to be held up to the ear for most phone calls. If it does this (and is not INSANELY expensive), plus can find contacts, do simple texts, etc.. maybe serve as a display for GPS apps, etc., it may be a winner.

    Of course I am really happy with my Citizen EcoDrive Pilot watch which keeps perfect time and never needs a charge or battery, so battery life will be a factor, as will ease of charging. Pretty much will need/want to be able to set it on a charge mat (with the phone) or in a cradle or something.

    Ability to remote my Samsung Smart TV (and Uverse box, AVR, etc.) would be a big plus!

  • Keg Man

    Heres a quick question. Upvote this post if you have never been to the samsung store, downvote if you have.

  • Keg Man

    There is no way I’m going to spend $200+ on a watch that is only good for a specific phone.

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  • Daeshaun Griffiths

    after making my slapband comment, i realized i want a smart wrist band.

  • coolsilver

    Sounds like a $300 watch. 🙁

    • Keg Man

      yep. any more than 300 and I’m out

  • PhillipCun

    LOL @ Samsung thinking they’re some big bad tech company. It boils my skin that tech companies think they can do it all just because they’re good at a handful of things. Apple should stay away from cloud services. Google needs to work on their retail, which they have improved slightly. And Samsung needs to stop thinking they can make innovative software. Some are decent and even some are great, but most of them lack a lot of polish.

    Strategically, Samsung should make this compatible with ALL Android devices. Then limit the best features to their Galaxy devices especially features that would be exclusive to their app offerings. This will convince people with non-Galaxy phones to purchase all Galaxy devices to offer a more integrated experience. I highly doubt they thought about that because they’re not a software company.

  • Tommy Kavounidis

    pebble ftw!!! only if it has google map support than its going to be a killer.

  • Yurles333

    Does anyone know if it is also capable of connection via wifi?

  • RaptorOO7

    So now I am hearing the Galaxy Note 3 will launch with 32GB as the base storage option, 16GB has been dropped completely. God I hope that is true and Samsung should employ the folks who rendered this galaxy gear watch, they certainly know how o make it look good.

  • David

    So excited for the Gingerbread watch! /s

  • AndrewScottRox

    The Motoactv got it right with the exception of the price. Otherwise, it paved the way for these next gen wearables. I hope to see this next generation expand on the Motoactv and actually bring some intuitiveness to these devices. Think calendar integration, reminders, quick searches, notifications, and some sms capability. A camera would be cool depending on how they used it.

  • ahhh yes

    would hope it could last at least a month on a charge. but would settle for 2 weeks

    • joejoe5709

      I would be fine with a 7 day week(ish) with moderate to heavy usage. That way, charge on Sunday night, be ready for Monday’s hard work and have it last all the way until bedtime again Sunday. A month seems kinda crazy unless that was mostly standy time. 2 weeks with light to moderate use would be pretty nice.

      Wireless charging/docking would be pretty cool. Take off your watch at night, throw it on the nightstand and it’ll be charged for the day. Also nice instead of fumbling for a charger cord.

      • Keg Man

        i thought the same thing but that would totally be an extra fee if it were even capable of it

    • Franklin Ramsey

      I’m guessing 3-5 days. A week tops. If they are able to get more battery life that would have to have a fairly large battery and would make it clunky.

      • Keg Man

        I’d be fine with 3-5 days. When you think about it, if you put your phone in airplane mode, it will last a week or more. So heres to hoping with the new bluetooth tech that it will last a week

  • joejoe5709

    Love the idea, but I’m not convinced of the execution just yet. This thing needs to be open minded along the lines of Chromecast so that people can tweak it and make it even better than the OEM intended. I’m happy to hear NFC is on board. Google, please make a smartwatch.

  • TheSimpleTruth

    I don’t see their motivation for making this a Samsung exclusive… Do they not think every manufacturer and tech company in the world are working on different versions of this device?

    Sure they may get a small boost in initial sales being the first release, but long term this move just doesn’t make any sense to me.

  • TheWenger

    Get ready to root your smart watch and install CM.

  • Michael Hammond

    Samsung Appified or not … It’s Android, it will get rooted …. geesh calm down people.

    Sounds pretty cool IMO

  • Androidandwp7equalsPower

    front facing camera for Google hangout of course. Forget phone calls. I want this

  • MotoRulz

    Price is going to be key to the success or failure of this watch.

  • hfoster52

    Its a “MANS” watch. Sounds a little big but should be interesting to see it.

    • FortitudineVincimus

      thats what she said

    • Keg Man

      yep. one more effing thing to insure. g-damn it!

  • Higher_Ground

    With a 2.5″ diagonal screen, it’s not a watch. That’s an ipod strappd to your wrist. Seriously 1″ smaller than the old iphones, even if it is contoured around your arm somewhat.

    My current watch has a 1.15″ screen. Let’s try to stay in that ballpark, or I’d only wear it while working out.

    • Higher_Ground

      Just had to check, my wrist is only 2″ wide to begin with 🙁

      • joejoe5709

        Well… I’m sure your wrist is 2″ straight across. But draw a diagonal line at approximately a 45 degree angle 2.5″ long. 2.5″ diagonal means just about about inches across assuming the long end goes the length of your wrist, not the width. Not so bad. I mean… it’s still a lot larger than I though it would be.

    • Keg Man

      if its that big, samsung is “Innovating” the watch. the isheep won’t recognize this. a 1″ screen smart watch would be useless, however I do fear scratches to a 2.5 in screen. My watches take a beating

  • Jared Krinsky

    I really wanted this a few months ago when my iPod broke and I wanted a watch that did exactly everything they are saying with this. Sadly I went and bought the last generation Nano to take it’s place.

  • Steve B

    Just wait and see if Google releases a Nexus watch this fall.

  • a.d.AM

    Prepare yourselves to be disappointed.

  • jer85008

    I think the proprietary lock-down is a mistake, limiting to Samsung phones will only drive sales to existing customers. Not that HTC/Motorola are much competition now but they both seem to be ripe to steal some business from Samsung.

  • Stephen Fronda

    I’ll buy it, but only if it’s NOT Samsung exclusive. There’s a reason I didn’t get the S4, and I’m not going to be forced into buying one (or any Samsung phone) just for this (awesome looking) watch.

  • Guest

    This device better offer something over what my smart phone already does. It also needs to work independently from the phone as well. If I always have to have both devices on in order for it to work then forget it!!! Not running apps from the Playstore is also not a good sign since that means it will have limited software and functionality.

    So all that brings me to this basic question again…”what can this watch do that we can’t already do with our phones?” There better be a good answer to that too, since I bet this device won’t be cheap!

    • Fred

      Ummm, wear it on your wrist?

    • joejoe5709

      Why do you need a smartphone on your wrist? It’s more or less meant to be a companion to your phone and enhance your smartphone experience, not to be a replacement to your phone.

      So to answer your question, it probably won’t do much that your phone can’t already. If that bothers you, don’t buy it.

  • mustbepbs

    What better way to attract muggers and thieves than a nice smartwatch?

    • chris420o

      goto the gym

      • Daistaar

        Why would going to the gym attract muggers and thieves?

    • Higher_Ground

      white headphones 😛

  • JWellington

    Streaming music from Pandora, Spotify, or Google Music and this is a win for me.

    • Andy Stetson

      Sadly, if this is all “Samsung Appified”, you won’t see play music implementation… until it gets R&R’d.

    • Greyhame

      Honest question: why would you want to stream music from your watch? Would you actually connect a wire to your headphones? Bluetooth would kill the battery I’d think.

      • JWellington

        The idea would be to leave my phone behind while I go for a run, streaming music to my bluetooth headset. According the article, the watch is supposed to have long battery life. Furthermore, bluetooth isn’t the battery drainer that it once was.

        For music aficionados like myself, having this feature would also greatly lessen the impact of battery life on phones since they wouldn’t have to remain awake playing back music all the time.

        • joejoe5709

          I’m not sure I’d ever want to leave my cell phone behind, but if it were able to control my Pandora app for me without taking out my phone, that would be great.

        • Greyhame

          I see. As Keg Man refers to above, I highly doubt the watch will have its own radio, however. And streaming BT audio would most likely change “long battery life” into less than a days worth.

      • Keg Man

        I dont think the phone is going to have a radio so I expect you to have a phone connected to it. I think the idea is to control your phone’s music from your watch. So you just tap the “next song” button or pause on the watch instead of tapping the phone’s buttons that happens to be strapped to your arm.

  • chris420o

    D O A

    • hkklife

      Yup, better just wait for Moto’s smartwatch effort.

      • chris420o

        rather googles…or that kickstarter watch hotwatch…terrible name but actually a cool idea at least trying somethin different

      • Maxim∑

        lol after the Moto X I have high hopes for that one…………

        Either Samsung or Apple.. I doubt Google will make one because of glass

  • Jon

    I think you mean “preface” in the article…

  • Ian

    Samsung app store only? ….pass

    • moelsen8

      yeah i’m not usually one to bash samsung, but i hope this thing crashes and burns if that’s the case.

    • MI95SHO

      -Maybe- if it were a Samsung only accessory, but to load their app store too? …pass

    • cvgordo

      doesn’t the kindle fire use an amazon only appstore? isn’t that easily worked around by just rooting it and flashing a new rom?
      as popular as the note3 and gs4 are/will be, i expect there will be a dev community for this and with that will come whole new ways to open it up to side loading apps and all sorts of shenanigans.
      we’ll see if the apps for google’s watch will be able to run on the galaxy gear though.

      • Keg Man

        thats also unreliable and likely to lose some features….I tried doing this with a nook tablet. Was severely disappointed and luckily thanks to an extended holiday return policy, got my money back. from my exp, I would not recommend doing this

        • happybana

          You did it wrong.

          • Keg Man

            no doubt. I know it was possible. couldn’t get the damn nook to communicate with the pc. The nook and/or PC kept loading the wrong drivers. worked at it for about 3 hours.

  • Hank 42

    I hope it has internal storage for mp3 purposes. I am still using the Motoactv daily, I know everyone hates it, but I have had it on my wrist since the week one and I love it. With that said I would love an update so it doesn’t look like I have a small computer strapped to my wrist….

    • Andy Stetson

      Still love mine, if for nothing other than the golf gps and mp3s!

  • BobbyG

    I’ll take a Breitling or Rolex on my wrist instead

  • Cory_S

    Is that a possibly leaked render of the Gear, or is it just a fan mockup you guys are using as an example?

    • turdbogls

      fan mock-up

      • Cory_S

        Good…not diggin the look of it.

      • leenephi

        Makes sense given that it doesn’t have a square screen. The flex/curved display would be cool though!

      • Keg Man

        i actually want the fan mock up

    • Ian

      Fan mockup based on an earlier article where they used the pic. Plus the screen in the render is rectangular, no way it would be 320×320. Sounds like it will have a square face.

  • joseph barrientos

    i hope it comes out nice, i want one

  • T4rd

    I can seem like a nerd at times, but I’m not sure I want to remove all doubt by wearing something like this yet, lol. If you can download clock/watch faces for it like the Pebble so it seems like a standard watch at first glance, then that would make it a lot more enticing for me.

  • Charlie R.

    Well, moving on to the rumored Nexus Smartwatch if this one really does only work with Samsung devices. Oh well.

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      The Motoactv got it right with
      the exception of the price. Otherwise, it paved the way for these next
      gen wearables. I hope to see this next generation expand on the Motoactv
      and actually bring some intuitiveness to these devices. Think calendar
      integration, reminders, quick searches, notifications, and some sms
      capability. A camera would be cool depending on how they used it.

      • Bruce Wayne

        I will smite the!!!

        • Zacharypt

          I want to correct your typo error… thee… But ultimately I want to join in the smiting process even more!

        • Aaron Lange

          Smite the what?

  • Andy Stetson

    They just need to make sure that there is a Golf GPS app for it, as well as other uses for runners/people who exercise.

    • turdbogls

      this is pretty much the only reason i would ever wear a “smartwatch”
      I have no need to know who just texted or e-mailed me, or to know the weather at every second of the day.
      give me GPS tracking/distance and maybe some music controls and i would be happy.

      • Andy Stetson

        Exactly, something like a better done MOTOACTV. Until then, i’ll keep the moto on my wrist.

    • EvanJ2462

      Just gimme a jefit app so I don’t have to pull my phone out 4000 times while I’m at the gym.

  • htowngtr

    Makes sense since Samsung wants to be the next Apple and develop their own ecosystem.

    • Maxim∑

      definitely not to late to do that…

      • Greyhame

        The sarcasm is strong in this one. 😉

  • T4rd

    How are these major OEMs so terrible at keeping secrets? Lol

    • john monsalve

      i ask myself that allll the time but figured they dont really want it secret they just say they do so that it creates a buzz and you talk about them more

    • You answered your own question. Larger companies have more people working on projects. More people equals more potential leakers. Win win.

      • T4rd

        Yeah, but I remember when Apple was pretty good at keeping their secrets out of the press until their announcement. Samsung/Google did a pretty damn good job with the Gnex too. I have to think in most of these cases where leaks leave nothing to the imagination, it’s on purpose to stir up interest in their upcoming devices.

    • Tim242

      They have to send units to developers. While those developers can’t speak publicly about it, they can whisper details.