Most of the leading mobile tech companies are now venturing into wearable devices today. Similar to Razer who just released their latest Nabu smartwatch (acknowledged as the Best of CES 2014), Samsung was also aggressive in coming with their modern timepieces for a couple of years now. After launching the Galaxy Gear, the company pushed out three more watches in April and another in July of this year. Not long after, they’ve also released the Gear S, a standalone smart wristwatch that can make and receive calls and texts and connect to data connect via its SIM.
The company was willing to try different size, functionalities, design, and technologies to come up with the perfect wearable. So far, the Samsung Gear 2 and Gear S are their leading smart wristwatch contenders on the market. Even though Gear S is their latest offering, which receives quite a lot of good impressions from consumers, its predecessor, the Gear 2 has undeniably a strong following as well.
The Gear 2 certainly boasts a remarkable display of wrist technology. It has the similar brushed-metal inspiration from the other Galaxy Gear devices; however, its camera is now mounted above the screen. Alongside it, there’s also that new mini Infrared-blaster on the body of the watch and a home button on the bottom of the screen. The wrist strap can be swapped with other regular watchstraps. Meanwhile, Gear S is designed like a little smartphone that’s been melted around a wristband. It has a huge, curved screen, chromed edges, and a tiny home button below the display. The difference of it from Gear 2 is that its band has a click-to-secure metal clasp that is adjustable by means of small holes along the band. Both smartwatches are snap on and are IP67-certified for water and dust resistance.
The Gear 2 and Gear S both have a dual-core processor and an AMOLED display except that the latter has a bigger screen where a good amount of text can fit. In addition, both have a number of watch faces that can be customized using the Gear Manager app.
Both devices can answer and receive text, emails, and calls directly on the wrist. Notifications make it feel like a wrist-pager, similar to other smartwatches on the market today. Other features include camera, voice recording and control, health tracking, a TV remote, and music playback. What makes the Gear S above the other is that it can work as a standalone device with its own SIM card.
The two watches run under Samsung’s own Tizen operating system, however, the pre-installed Gear App marketplace lacks some of the common applications we love. One thing you can count on this OS is the list of fitness apps, but some of the premium applications will cost you a dollar, or even two or three to install.
To wrap it up, Samsung Gear 2 and Gear S are great devices that should be included in your options for the next wearable to get. However, the latter may come with features you want in a modern watch, yet it needs a lot of improvements. It has demonstrated Samsung’s technological expertise. On the other hand, Gear S is a better option if you’re looking for a smartwach that can work without any paired handset. But still, it needs many enhancements, especially when it comes to apps.
So far, these devices are among the best modern timepieces you can find on the market, but we can only wait until Samsung sets the bar higher for its competitors with a smartwatch that can fully assist its users in terms of health benefits.