Samsung Galaxy Gear smartwatch: VERY mixed reviews

The category has promise, but this isn't the sine qua non.

Samsung Galaxy Gear: Ugly, pricey, poor battery

Samsung proudly unveils its smartwatch. The Galaxy Gear is a $300 accessory that does more than tell the time. The watch allows you to keep your oversized phablet in your pocket. But it's full of worrying compromises.

In IT Blogwatch, bloggers look to the next smartwatch to fulfil their dreams.

Your humble blogwatcher curated these bloggy bits for your entertainment.

Lookyou: Martyn Williams has the speeds and feeds, isn't it?

There are few consumer electronics products as hyped at present as so-called smartwatches. ... Samsung provided a first look at its Galaxy Gear...at the IFA electronics show in Berlin.

...

1.6-inch...OLED (organic light emitting diode) screen...320 pixels square...1.9 megapixel camera. ...custom-built apps...like Evernote...email client. ...battery life [of] up to 25 hours...rated for IP55 -- protected against dust and water jets for a few minutes...11mm thick and 37mm by 57mm...74 grams. ...don't expect to use it on non-Samsung [phones]...[release date] late September [price] around US$299.  MORE

Who can add more detail? Matt Buchanan can: [You're fired -Ed.]

Galaxy Gear is perhaps the flagship of a new era made possible by power-sipping but powerful processors and dense, high-resolution displays. [It] will have dozens of dedicated apps, like RunKeeper and the read-it-later service Pocket.

...

[It's] still best at surfacing information that can be consumed and digested in a split second...the kinds of things that you already get notifications for on your smartphone. ... [But it's] an opportunity to put an array of sensors [on] the wearer’s body—accelerometers, gyroscopes, heart-rate monitors...and others—allowing the collection and analysis of vast amounts of data about...movements, sleep patterns, and more.

...

This is useful—but it is very much not the stuff of dreams and revolutions.  MORE

But Sarah Rotman Epps says it's not ready for primetime (and never will be):

[It] improves upon the decade of smartwatches that came before it...but still doesn’t give consumers a convincing reason to buy one. ...you have to charge it nightly like you do your phone. ...may not live up to the durability claims of other watches...a deal killer when it comes to wearables

...

It’s nothing against Samsung. It’s that there are very few functions you could perform better on a watch than on a phone. ... Samsung is pursuing a spaghetti-on-the-wall product strategy.

...

Maybe Samsung will tap into unmet demand [but] my bet is that smartwatches are sci-fi inventions that are already anachronisms.  MORE

Jilles van Gurp ain't impressed either:

...as a companion product this thing is plain weird and misguided.

...

Useless for phone calls and why would you want to use a 1.9 MP camera when you have a perfectly good 8+MP one in your pocket? ... You sort of hold up your fist while trying to push a tiny button? ... That’s a gesture that could be wildly misinterpreted.

I just hope it at least tells you the time.  MORE

Meanwhile, JR Raphael ponders the odd requirement to pair it with Samsung's latest phablet:

The Note 3 [is] slated to launch in the U.S. in October. [It] has a 5.7-in. 1080p AMOLED display...a 13-megapixel camera...a new 2.3GHz quad-core chip (for the LTE version) along with 3GB of RAM...a faux-leather look on the phone's back that brings to mind a paper-notebook [is] a thin, removable plastic panel.

...

[It] ships with Samsung's Knox security system [which] adds a layer of security...allow[ing] you to store data in separate "containers" [which] could hold particular appeal for IT departments.  MORE

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