Samsung officially introduced the Galaxy Gear smart watch on Wednesday at the “Samsung Mobile Unpacking Episode 2” event in Berlin. As IBTimes previously reported, the Samsung Galaxy Gear is designed primarily as a companion device to other Samsung Galaxy smartphones and tablets, and the smart watch has many of the features previously leaked.
The Samsung Galaxy Gear smart watch will link with Samsung Galaxy devices to allow users to make and receive calls without having to pull the device out of their pocket. The Galaxy Gear will also deliver notifications and alerts, sync calendars and call logs, and support apps designed especially for the smart watch.
“[It’s] a perfect comanion to the Galaxy Note 3,” J.K. Shin, the chief of Samsung Mobile, said at the event, referencing the new smartphone Samsung also unveiled. “I believe it will become a new fashion icon around the world.”
The Galaxy Gear features a “Smart Relay” feature that allows for seamless connection between the smart watch and other Samsung devices. For example, if a user starts reading an email on the Galaxy Gear but wants to switch to the larger screen on the Galaxy Note 3, the smartphone screen will automatically switch to the exact location of the email where the user left off on the smart watch.
The Galaxy Gear features speakers and microphones on the clasp of the smart watch’s band, allowing the users to make calls or issue voice commands by holding the watch up to their ear.
There is also an outward-facing camera on the Galaxy Gear’s band that can take a picture with just one downward swipe. Samsung called the camera a “memographer,” and said it can do more than take pictures, such as translate foreign signs or find information about a product. Samsung said this is just the beginning of augmented reality features possible with the Galaxy Gear smart watch.
The screen on the Galaxy Gear smart watch is a 1.63-inch, 320x320 super AMOLED display. The smart watch is powered by a custom 800 MHz single-core CPU (as opposed to the expected 1.5 GHz dual-core), and comes equipped with a gyroscope and accelerometer to respond to gestures and movements.
Previous rumors predicted that the Galaxy Gear smart watch would come in four colors, with a battery that only lasts about 10 hours. At the Unpacking event, Samsung said the Galaxy Gear would come in six colors and that the batter would actually last over 25 hours.
Perhaps most intriguing is that the Galaxy Gear will be compatible with more than just the Galaxy Note 3. A new upgrade to the Samsung Galaxy S4 will allow it sync with the Galaxy Gear smart watch, and older Galaxy S models will get a similar update in October.
Samsung said the device would launch in 149 countries September 25 and will be commercially available worldwide in October.
Originally from Northern California, Ryan W. Neal came to New York to earn his master's in journalism from Columbia University. He joined IB Times April 2013, and is a writer...