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Samsung Galaxy Gear 2 Review: Wearable Smart Watch

Samsung Galaxy Gear 2 Review

The first Samsung Galaxy Gear watch was decent, but it didn’t reach the expectations of consumers. But Samsung is back at it with the new Galaxy Gear 2. The new Galaxy Gear has a sleek updated design and an updated operating system.

Samsung was lucky last year, as their wearable Gear product was one of very few on the market with such advanced capabilities. But in just a year things have changed. Samsung is now facing competition from some pretty big names, including Sony with its Sony Smartwatch 2, Apple with its upcoming iWatch and even the updated Pebble Steel. Not to mention, there are a tonne of new fitness wearable gadgets entering the market.

So has Samsung stepped it up this year? Or will their competitors do better?

Design, Size

The new Samsung Gear 2 is sleeker than the previous model. The Gear 2 features an all metal aesthetic, with an aluminium face. The plastic wrist band can now be changed, providing an opportunity for some truly stylised wrist bands. The new wrist band that comes with the Gear 2 is an improvement on the original Gear wrist band. It looks a little nicer and is more comfortable to wear.

One of the best changes is probably the camera once housed in the strap has been moved. So has the home button, which is now on the front of the Gear 2, more similar to the Samsung Galaxy smartphone range.

The new Gear 2 is also lighter than the previous Gear, and thinner too. At 5 grams lighter and 1mm thinner, these small changes make a big difference when it comes to overall appearance and usability. The dimensions for the Gear 2 are36.9 x 58.4x 10.0 mm and a weight of 68g.  The charging case for the Gear 2 is also now smaller.

But probably the biggest update? The Gear 2 is now waterproof. Really, this should have already been a feature but its good that Samsung has implemented it now.

Overall, the new Gear 2 looks nicer and feels nicer on the wrist than the previous model.

Samsung is now also offering two sizes in their wearable range, with the new Samsung Gear 2 Neo. The Gear 2 Neo is a lighter and smaller variance of the smart watch range. The two devices are also the first Tizen based wearable platforms.

The screen on the Gear 2 is stunning, sizing up at 1.63 inches. With a resolution of 320×320 and Super AMOLED technology, visuals are crisp, clean and colourful. There is also a powerful dual core processor running at 1.0GHz and a 2 megapixel auto focus camera, now inside the smart watch rather than on the strap.

Specs And Features

  • Heart rate sensor – More accurate than the Samsung S5
  • Pedometer
  • Works as a standalone fitness manager, so there is no need for a smartphone.
  • IP67 rated – splash and dust proof
  • Bluetooth Call
  • Camera
  • Notifications for SMS, Email and Apps
  • Media Controller
  • Schedule
  • Smart Relay
  • S Voice
  • Stopwatch
  • Timer
  • Weather Alerts
  • Customisable wrist straps
  • Infrared sensor – use the watch as a TV remote.
  • Standalone music player

Display

The new screen on the Gear 2 is now 1.63 inches in size with Super AMOLED technology and a resolution of 320 x 320. The screen looks nicer than the previous Gear, featuring much better and brighter colours. The backgrounds available as default on the Gear 2 really make the screen stand out. There is also an option to add your own background, either from the camera or matching with a bluetooth connected Samsung phone.

When the Gear first come out, there were’t many apps available. With the release of the Gear 2, Samsung has promised to deliver over 100 new apps. These include great apps like eBay and Paypal, with more to come.

Battery Life

The Samsung Gear 2 features a 300mAh Li-Ion battery. The battery life is actually pretty decent, giving about 2 to 3 days of usage and about 6 days of low usage.

Conclusion

The Samsung Galaxy Gear 2 is a great upgrade from the original Gear, and a great entry device for those looking for a solid piece of wearable technology. Those who don’t have a Samsung phone might find that something is missing, even though the Gear 2 is meant to be a standalone device in many ways. Samsung has raised the bar for the Gear 2, but the question is whether or not it can compete with wearable devices from Apple, Sony and other competitors.

Want to know more? Check out this detailed video review of the Samsung Galaxy Gear 2 and The Samsung Gear 2 Neo.

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