- 1.63-inch LED touchscreen
- 1.9-megapixels Camera
- 4 G.B internal memory
- Inbult battery
- 315mAh ie 3 day of battery life
- 10 times more option
- 70 + apps at lunch
- MRP $299
The smartwatch features a 1.63-inch (4.14-cm) screen as well as a basic camera, and will connect to Samsung's latest Galaxy Note 3 smartphone via wireless Bluetooth technology. It will make calls, display messages, record videos and snap photos, all while the user's phone stays in their pocket or handbag. The success of Samsung's latest smartwatch - clunky earlier versions in 1999 and 2009 didn't go down well with consumers - will be measured as much in how it affects sales of high-end Galaxy smartphones as in sales of the device itself.
But it is also a shot across the bows of Apple and Google Inc, which are widely believed to be working on their own wrist-worn devices in what analysts expect to be the next phase of the mobile communications boom.
"We had smartwatch-type products before, but they were mainly for making phone calls. What's different with the Gear is it's got far more useful functions. It's usability has increased significantly and design is not bulky," said J.K. Shin, Samsung's co-chief executive and head of mobile business.
There's no question that the Galaxy Gear is a good-looking gadget. The 1.63-inch colour touchscreen is framed by a matte silver bezel, and the band is available in six attractive hues ranging from the subtle "jet black" and "rose gold" options to the more eye-catching "wild orange" and "lime green" varieties.
The band, which consists of a textured rubber material, feels sturdy enough to suffer the rigours of everyday activity, but the soft touch finish adds a premium feel that matches the rest of the Galaxy Gear's upmarket aesthetic.
Importantly, the relatively large display isn't as in-your-face as you might expect, and the watch itself doesn't feel too awkward or heavy when worn. There are two microphones on either side of the watch face that work in tandem for noise cancellation during phone calls, and the speaker is built into the band's buckle.
The 1.9-megapixel camera is located on the top end of the watch band, but its positioning isn't ideal. To take photos or videos of what's directly in front of you, you'll need to tilt the Galaxy Gear so that the screen is completely horizontal – unfortunate, as the screen's limited viewing angles make it difficult to see in this orientation.
The relatively small 315mAh battery means you'll need to charge the Galaxy Gear as often as you charge your smartphone, with a run-time of roughly 25 hours. The bundled charger consists of a leather-look dock that wraps around the watch face and plugs into a wall socket.
The Galaxy Gear 3 will be released alongside the Galaxy Note 3 in more than 140 countries around the world from September 25. Its Australian release is expected to be close to, if not contemporaneous with, the worldwide launch. Pricing is yet to be announced.
Telstra is the only Australian carrier that has confirmed it will be selling the Galaxy Gear smart watch along with the Galaxy Note 3. Vodafone, Optus and Virgin Mobile have all confirmed they will be selling the Galaxy Note 3.