Samsung has unveiled two versions of its second generation smartwatch in Barcelona’s Mobile World Congress powered by a new operating system.
The Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo are sleeker, more premium looking products with fewer industrial design cues and are the first wearable devices to use the open-source Tizen operating system, in a move to lessen the company’s reliance on Google’s Android system that was used in the first Gear device. The Gear 2’s forward facing camera has been moved to the screen from the strap cleaning up its design. The Gear 2 Neo does not have a camera but is lighter as a result.
The new Samsung devices are also certain to eat into the market for fitness monitors and trackers with its own personal fitness coach onboard. Wearers can develop a customised fitness routine and monitor heart rates on the Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo, which also have an onboard pedometer and methods to monitor exercise, sleep and stress levels. Both devices will be compatible with more than a dozen Samsung Galaxy smartphones at launch, offering an extended portfolio of apps and uses to existing Samsung users.
Samsung are making much of the devices’ customisation features with a range of strap colours including Charcoal Black, Gold Brown and Wild Orange for the Gear 2 and Charcoal Black, Mocha Grey and Wild Orange for the Gear 2 Neo. Home screen backgrounds, clock face and fonts can also be changed to suit individual user tastes.
Simon Stanford, Vice President of IT & Mobile division, Samsung Electronics UK & Ireland said: “Samsung continues to lead in the wearable technology market with innovative, creative devices that are completely integrated into the lives of our customers. Offering extended connectivity features, stylish customisation options and a robust application network, we have enhanced everything that people love about the original Gear to create a second generation of wearable devices that offer unparalleled smart freedom.”
The Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo allow wearers to accept or ignore incoming calls and messages, provide notifications based on your daily routine and even control electronic products with the built in IrLED sensor and WatchON Remote application. A new built-in music player and Bluetooth headset means users can still listen to their music even if they don’t have their phone on them.
Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo will be available for worldwide launch in April.