Samsung has unveiled the stylish Galaxy Watch, an updated version of its ageing Gear line. It comes with LTE connectivity, comprehensive fitness smarts, GPS, water resistance and a price-tag to match. Few real surprises, though.
Essential reading:Top fitness trackers and health gadgets
Its fair to say the watch was not the world’s best kept secret. Heck, Samsung itself inadvertendly leaked pictures on the US version of its website a few days ago. But today, all the final details have been made official at the company’s Unpacked event.
As expected, the timepiece comes in two sizes – a 42mm variant and a 46mm one. Both sport a 360×350 pixel OLED display, although the 46mm version comes with more screen real-estate – 1.3 inches versus 1.2 inches.
The larger variant also makes room for more battery juice. Under its hood you’ll find a 472mAH cell which is enough to keep the gizmo going for 7 days. This is particularly impressive considering the display is always on and its full colour. The 270mAH cell on the smaller variant is enough for 3 days, which still gives Apple something to aim for.
There will be a Blutooth only and an LTE version of the timepiece. The LTE variant comes with 1.5GB of RAM, and the Bluetooth with half as much.
This is primarly a fitness focused device. Its slew of activity tracking sensors includes an accelerometer, heart rate, gyro and barometre. So expect the usual steps, distance, floors, calories, sleep and activity stats. This includes keeping tabs on up to 40 different exercises – and swimming thanks to 5 ATM water-resistance.
Stress tracking is slowly becoming a standard staple of any decent fitness device. Galaxy watch will let you know how chilled you are and there are exercise to keep you calm. An interesting addition is the ability to log your food and water intake, presumably this will be done via the accompanying smartphone app.
Unfortunately rumours of a built-in blood pressure sensor did not pan out. The company has recently filed a patent for just such a device. Galaxy Watch does come, though, with built-in GPS for phone-free exercising, NFC for payments and LTE to stay connected and stream music on-the-go.
“The new Galaxy Watch was designed for all lifestyles to help meet consumer needs, such as more efficient battery life to stay connected longer, and better wellness tracking to help users maintain their goals – we are delivering them with connected experiences, all at the touch of a wrist.” said DJ Koh, President and CEO of IT & Mobile Communications Division, Samsung Electronics.
The Bluetooth only version will launch in the US and Korea later this month. Look for the LTE variant to land later in the year.
Start collecting your pennies as the new timepiece starts at $329.99 on samsung.com. If you buy before September 8th, Samsung will throw in a free spare watch band. You can also pick it up on Amazon (check price).
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