Samsung showcased the Gear S2 yesterday, which could turn out to be the best smartwatch ever released.
This could well be the watch that stole the show. The Samsung Gear S2 probably won’t be cheap but it is the closest people will get to an ordinary watch. At only 11.4mm thick, it manages to avoid the bulky design of other smartwatches in favour of something which feels much more comfortable to wear. Two versions will available when it goes on sale in October, with the Gear S2 aimed at sporting enthusiasts and the Gear S2 Classic focused on the traditional leather strap design. For the standard Gear S2, straps will not be replaceable with your own bands, as they all come with Samsung’s custom locking mechanism. The most unique feature of the Gear S2 is the navigation dial, which sits around the edges of the bezel. Rather than using a button, the majority of UI navigation can be done by spinning the dial around the edge of the screen, which feels remarkably natural and intuitive.
Size differences are almost identical, with the classic being slightly smaller than the standard Gear. Both have the same 1.2-inch AMOLED display with a resolution of 360 x 360 pixels, which equates to a sizeable 306 pixels-per-inch. They will also both come with 4GB of included storage and 512MB RAM. The processor is somewhat underpowered compared to the competition, with a 1GHz dual core chip. However, most of the current smartwatches are probably overpowered for what they actually do. The more frugal processor will no doubt help battery life, which Samsung rates at 2-3 days. Cellular versions will come with a 300 mAh battery, while non-cellular versions will have a smaller 250 mAh version.
Both devices run on the latest version of the Tizen operating system and do not support Android Wear, which could be a deal breaker for some. However, this is also the first Samsung watch that will pair with non-Samsung devices. Any smartphone running Android 4.4 should be able to use it, though certain features such as Samsung Pay won’t work. There are around 70 partners currently working on Gear 2 apps, which is a healthy number. There’s a ton of included sensors such as a gyroscope, accelerometer, heart rate monitor and barometer. These all integrate with the S Health app to keep an eye on your fitness habits.
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