LG isn't the only company announcing a new smartwatch today. Samsung has announced a new device in their line of Gear smartwatches. Their latest watch is the Samsung Gear S, and it's one of the only smartwatches on the market that sports 3G connectivity. This allows it to function on its own without having to be forever tethered to a smartphone to access notifications and other content.

The other unique feature of the Gear S is its 2" curved OLED display with a resolution of 320x480. Samsung believes that a convex display allows for a more ergonomic and comfortable smartwatch. With its curved rectangular display the form factor of the Gear S is like a cross between fitness bands and smartwatches.

Inside it features an unnamed 1GHz dual core CPU paired with 512MB of RAM and 4GB of NAND. Samsung rates the 300mAh battery inside for two days of usage. Like most of Samsung's other smartwatches, it includes a heart rate sensor and IP67 dust and water resistance rated for 30 minutes of submersion in up to 1 meter of water.

Unlike most other smartwatches, the Gear S runs Samsung's Tizen operating system rather than Google's Android Wear platform. It includes some of Samsung's software like S Health and their smartwatch music player. Between Tizen's built in applications and the watch's support for WiFi and 3G networking, the Gear S may be the first smartwatch that can act as its own device rather than an extension of a user's smartphone.

Samsung will begin sales of the Gear S in early October. Pricing is yet to be announced.

Source: Samsung Mobile Press

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  • TechieBen - Thursday, August 28, 2014 - link

    FP! And all because a watch with 2-day battery life is being overhyped. My Nokia dumbphone runs longer than that. And my droid does everything this bracelet puter is supposed to, and likely does it better.
  • ddriver - Thursday, August 28, 2014 - link

    "My Nokia dumbphone runs longer than that" is kind of a lame argument, dumbphones tend to have the longest battery life. It's like saying "even F1 cars run faster than that"...
  • TechieBen - Thursday, August 28, 2014 - link

    Ok, a trail watch like a Suunto or Garmin can last a month with GPS datalogging off, with it running they would still outlast this Samsung wristlet. My 2010 iPod Nano lasts three days with my playlist on eight or so hours a day.

    My droid or my wife's iphone would do all its non-wrist operations faster and better, and do more. So what's the point of yet another ARM on the same limb? Other than looking fashion-able, eh?
  • ddriver - Thursday, August 28, 2014 - link

    And my toothbrush lasts a week on a single charge. But so what? Those devices do not compare, their electronics is different, their battery size and capacity is different. Compare it to other smartwatches, not to arbitrary devices.
  • TechieBen - Friday, August 29, 2014 - link

    As I've already said, a droid, an ipod, and even an old Nokia compares to this in most if not all non-wrist functions. You wish this 2-day runtime wonder won't be compared to other ARM'd and ecosystem'd personal digital gear which everyone uses to check time. Users don't segregate tech value that way except for maybe fashion. The internals aren't much of a secret so no "special sauce" for your special pleading.
  • zodiacfml - Thursday, August 28, 2014 - link

    2 days? that would be impressive considering that no smartwatch lasts more than 24 hours. This probably due to OLED display which is basically more efficient that LCDs.
  • uhuznaa - Thursday, August 28, 2014 - link

    It will definitely not run for 2 days with 3G and WiFi on... expect 8 hours then.
  • melgross - Thursday, August 28, 2014 - link

    No. OLED's are not more efficient. That's a myth. Someday that might be true, but it isn't so far. If anything, they're somewhat less efficient. That's why phones that use them are oriented towards black backgrounds. If you have a face on this that's mostly white, as the pic on the right indicates will be available, your battery life will be shorter than if it's black.

    It's also a reason why OLEDs are less bright than LCD screens. LCDs use LEDs as backlight, and they are very efficient. One reason is that they can run hotter. OLEDs, by their very nature, being organic, can't take all that heat. An LEDs life depends on its temperature. So manufacturers must keep OLED temps down. That limits their brightness, and efficiency as well.

    It's slowly getting better. But LEDs are improving faster, as we can see with LED home lighting.
  • 3DoubleD - Thursday, August 28, 2014 - link

    While I don't disagree that LEDs are more efficient than OLEDs (it's absolutely true), the potential power draw for a dark-faced watch style is far lower in the case of an OLED screen than could be reasonably achieved with any background on an LED screen.

    I also think it is unlikely many people would opt for a bright-faced watch style, I think it would be incredibly annoying and distracting if you watch glowed in the dark.

    Also, OLEDs provide the potential to deactivate most of the screen and only use a small section for increased power savings when the battery gets low. For example, you could simply have a small digital time display instead of a larger digital or analog watch display. This flexibility is completely lost with LED displays. Even worse, LED backlit LCD displays actually pull additional power with dark backgrounds vs bright backgrounds since the LCD elements must be powered to block the backlight.

    So, all-around, I think they made a sound engineering choice choosing OLED for a watch. Jury is still out on more versatile screens such as phones though, where multi-purpose applications play less to OLEDs strengths.
  • Daniel Egger - Thursday, August 28, 2014 - link

    That's a common misconception: OLEDs are usually inferior to LCDs with LED backlighting with the difference being that LCD have constant power draw whenever the backlight is on while OLEDs only draw power for powered up pixels. With the white backdrop as pictured OLEDs are most certainly less effective.

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