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It's too early to say which company will win the wearable war. But experts say there will be big demand for such products, which may mean there could be multiple winners. For example, market research firm Canalys estimated that about 500,000 smartwatches were sold in 2013 with that number growing to more than 5 million this year. And Generator Research expects less than 9 million smartwatch sales in 2014, but it believes sales will grow to 214 million in 2018. In this post, I'll take a look at what Samsung may have gotten right with its latest wearable devices and where it likely missed the mark, again.
Design: Still bulky and ugly, but lighter.To be fair there are a few tweaks to the Samsung smartwatches that are notable improvements over the original Galaxy Gear smartwatch introduced six months ago, But for the most part, the design and function of iphone case lens the device has not changed dramatically, The changes in design especially are more subtle, Jessica Dolcourt, CNET Reviews editor, said in her initial take over the weekend that "aesthetically, the Gear 2 looks much the same as the original Galaxy Gear, though its rectangular face is very slightly larger and slimmer." Indeed, the Gear 2, which comes with a camera, and Gear 2 Neo, which comes without a camera, are slightly lighter and a smidge thinner than the previous generation Galaxy Gear smartwatch, The finish is still made to look like brushed metal, There's also textured straps with a clip-in clasp closure, And the devices must still be charged in separate charging cradle..
While the look and feel of the original Galaxy Gear smartwatch may have appealed to some, it was very clearly designed for the sensibility of a man without much thought to the female consumer. And again, Samsung has missed the mark in making these devices stylish and attractive accessories that will appeal to both men and women. As my CNET News colleague Shara Tibken complained to me over e-mail, the new Samsung smartwatches still look like smartphones strapped to a wrist rather than a piece of jewelry. I agree.
That said, the Gear Fit, which is considered more of a fitness tracker, offers a new design that may appeal to more consumers, It looks much like other fitness iphone case lens bands, like the FitBit or Nike FuelBand, but it packs more functionality than these competitors, The lighter device comes with a curved super AMOLED 1.84-inch screen, It offers much of the notification functionality found in the Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo, such as notifications for texts, calls, and e-mails, But the device is primarily geared toward health and fitness, complete with a heart rate monitor and access to software for personal-fitness coaching..
The device itself offers a sleeker design with an interchangeable rubber wristband. Swappable bands and revamped cameraThe one major change in design that will likely please more fashionable consumers is that the camera on the Gear 2 has been moved from the wristband to the device itself. (The Gear 2 Neo doesn't include a camera at all.) This means that Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo owners will be able to switch the bands on their smartwatches to update their look. Samsung hasn't changed the color scheme, and it's still offering bands in these three colors: Charcoal Black, Gold Brown, and Wild Orange.
Samsung also moved the microphone used for voice-activation and speaker on the device from the clasp on the wristband to the body of the smartwatch, This not only means users don't have to turn over their wrist to talk to their smartwatches, but it's another element that was changed to make the wristbands interchangeable, Still, the quality of the camera on the Gear 2 is only slightly improved from the one offered on the Galaxy Gear: 2 megapixels on the newer Gear 2 versus 1.9 megapixels on the original Galaxy Gear, So for potential customers who were not impressed iphone case lens with the original camera, it doesn't look like the embedded camera on the new device will be much better..
Getting more bang for the buckOne of the major criticisms of the original Galaxy Gear was that it simply didn't do much. Samsung has attempted to remedy this issue with the latest versions of the product. In addition to connecting to a user's smartphone or tablet to provide alerts, take photos, make calls, and access certain apps, the devices now also offer enhanced functionality, such as fitness and health tracking. For example, both the Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo have built-in heart rate sensors. The Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo also offer the ability to play music via Bluetooth headphones without the need to connect to a smartphone or tablet. The devices are also water resistant and dust-proof. The combination of these features, could make even the Gear 2 and the Gear 2 Neo compelling choices for athletes looking for a device to take along for workouts. Unfortunately, the Gear Fit, which is also dust proof and water resistant, doesn't allow you to download music onto the device for use without a connected smartphone.
Improved battery life is yet to be provenAnother major problem with the original Galaxy Gear smartwatch was the battery life, The company claimed that the 315mAH battery would hold a charge for about 24 hours, Samsung says it has extended the battery life of its new smartwatches, The Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo are expected to iphone case lens hold a charge for three days, But it will be interesting to see how this actually plays out given that the battery on the new devices is actually a 300mAH battery, The Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo not only use smaller batteries, but the devices also sport faster 1GHz dual core processors, which may also affect battery life, The Gear Fit is supposed to have the longest battery life of all three devices, The company says it can run for up to four days on "typical usage," or up to five days on "low usage."While charging a smartphone once a day may be fine for many consumers, it's generally not considered acceptable for a wearable gadgets, People expect watches to keep a charge for days and not hours..