Samsung Galaxy Gear Review Roundup: Is The Smart Watch Worth Its Price?

  @ryanWneal on September 05 2013 2:20 PM
Samsung-Galaxy-Gear
Samsung unveiled the Galaxy Gear smartswatch on Wednesday that works as an accessory to its market-leading Galaxy smartphones, with a small screen offering basic functions like photos, hands-free calls and instant messaging. Reuters

Samsung unveiled the Galaxy Gear smart watch on Wednesday at its Samsung Mobile Unpacked event in Berlin. The Galaxy Gear hopes to push the boundaries of wearable technology with apps, a touchscreen, camera and smartphone connectivity. You can read a full breakdown of the specs for the Samsung Galaxy Gear here.

Though the smart watch arena is quickly growing crowded, other entrants like the Pebble and Sony SmartWatch 2 have failed to generate much excitement. Can the Samsung Galaxy Gear be the smart watch to change that?

It’s only been a day since Samsung officially revealed the Galaxy Gear, but there are already plenty of opinions and early reviews of the smart watch. Unfortunately for Samsung, most reviewers decided that the Galaxy Gear seems very much like a first-generation attempt.

The IBTimes tech team primarily took issue with the device's appearance. The face of the Galaxy Gear has four visible screws, taking away the sleek and polished look we’ve come to expect from mobile devices. Cheap digital watches and even IKEA furniture hide the screws; why couldn't Samsung do the same?

Aside from black, the colors prevent the Galaxy Gear from being used in a professional setting. For the $300 price tag Samsung is putting on the Galaxy Gear, the smart watch could at least look good.

Engadget said the smart watch feels “sluggish,” “clunky and unpolished.” The Galaxy Gear can load only 10 third-party apps, and reviewers noticed that it felt too large for female users. They also noted that the overall strap and buckle don’t feel terribly sturdy.

ZDNet called the Galaxy Gear “rushed and exorbitantly priced,” and added that Samsung had left the door wide open for Apple to conquer the smart watch market with its rumored iWatch, or for Google Glass to dominate. Others noted problems with the Galaxy Gear's battery life, the price, and the limited reach of Bluetooth connectivity.

Engadget did note that some apps like Watch faces and Music performed well. VentureBeat also opined that the Galaxy Gear was too large for many women, but added that the device would be excellent as a workout companion.

“Samsung will do well with the health-conscious market, and those who are looking to lose weight,” Venture Beat said. 

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