It appears that the Samsung Gear Family of Devices went through five iterations before landing a smart watch design worthy of all the accolades: The Samsung Gear Fit. While it is designed more for the fitness-minded, this slimmed down version of a smart watch has a lot of appeal due to its curved narrow curved display that fits the wrist as well. Samsung now seems to understand appreciated that a watch is considered a piece of jewelry, and that some users want the ability to customize it. The newest Gears are offered in a wide range of colors and straps. Both of the Gear 2 models are only offered standard watch straps.
The Samsung Galaxy Gear released on September 4, 2013, was the first smart watch introduced by in the Samsung Gear family of devices. It serves as a companion for all Samsung devices that run Android 4.3 or better. The Galaxy Gear received a negative reception; it was criticized for the uninspired interface design, the incompetent implementation of some of its software, the few apps available, its poor battery life, and its co-dependency on Samsung Galaxy phones and tablets. Although considered very good quality, the inclusion of functions directly into the wrist strap made it unyielding and difficult to wear comfortably. Additionally, it was also panned for its app limitations, along with it’s an erratic notification system.
The Gear 2, the Gear’s successor, was released on April 11, 2014.
Gear 2 runs Tizen, a Linux-based operating system co-developed by Samsung. The design of the device itself was also remodeled. The move of its camera from the watchband to the watch itself allows users to replace their own bands. Also new to this device is the addition of an infrared blaster and optical heart rate sensor.
Two models of the Gear 2 was released February 22, 2014 were released, the Gear 2 which has a steel exterior and includes a camera and Gear 2 Neo made from plastic and excludes the camera. They are otherwise identical. This model is considered a much better attempt to make the smart watch more relevant with its streamlined design, the ability to use custom watch straps, and its improved battery life.
The Samsung Gear Live was released June 25, 2014 and is an Android Wear-based smartwatch released by Samsung and Google. Certified against dust and water-resistant, it has a replaceable 22m strap and a sleek steel exterior. Two new features are a heart rate monitor and newly located power button.
The Samsung Gear Fit has a wristband design for those who are fitness-minded. Much lighter and significantly smaller and lighter than the previous Gear 2 generation of smartwatches, it features a curved display. The newly included applications facilitate the monitoring of the following fitness activities:
- A sensor for Heart Rate monitoring
- A pedometer-to track how much you walk
- Exercise Monitoring as Standalone Modes for Running and Walking
- Additional monitor modes for Cycling and Hiking
- Sleep Monitoring & Stress level monitoring