Test: Samsung Galaxy Gear

Samsung’s first smart watch has lots of features and good ideas, but it feels very very first generation.

The rumors and writings about Samsung’s Smart Watch has been many things and having been named esten on the arm of a little more than a week, we have some mixed impressions regarding the notorious clock. Samsung themselves would, of course, emphasize that this is the future, as we’ve seen it on video for so many years. At times, we can probably say that they are on the right track with this idea, but they need a generation or two before the future is here.

The thing is that there is no middle point here. The features available, or not available, position themselves either very high on the plus side or very far down on the minus side. For this reason, we make a Jekyll & Hyde-review and divide it accordingly.

The world’s cruelest clock!

There is a lot to like with the Gear, no doubt. Although the interface initially felt a little confused when it differs quite a lot from other watches we have to say that the logic, once settled, is flawless.Swipe to the right or the left, swipe down from the top to back and poke or press with two fingers to bring up the status bar and list of open apps. It works great and feels much less fiddly than what it does, for example, Motorola Motoactv and Sonys Smartwatch 2.

Among the features, Samsung has tried to cram as much as possible, which makes it really nördkul to use the clock. There is of course a bunch of appearances on the clock, the ability to control the music, stopwatch, countdown timer and the ability to locate your phone if you placed it. Then there are the additional features of step count (sync only with Samsung’s S health), weather, possibility to make voice memos, voice control via Samsung’s voice and the ability to call. The latter may not be helpful in all situations, but via the integrated microphone and speaker, acting at speakerphone to your connected handset and it works unexpectedly well. It will be a little fiddly if you must wrap the number on the small screen, but otherwise it works better than expected.

Something else that is better than expected, mostly because we never thought it would be such a fun feature, is the camera. On the bracelet you will find a fairly low-res camera that fixes both images (with artificial shutter sound that can’t be beat by) and video recordings at upwards of 15 seconds (strangely without notification sound).

It is not enough, you can always go into Samsung’s application store and download more gadgets, ranging from new clock skins for vinsökningsappar. Clock skins, Runkeeper, Evernote, Runtastic, wine viewfinder Vivino: and direct the translator Camdictionary are some of the better and works in most cases just as announced or far above expectations.

World’s worst clock!

On the other side of the coin, however, it is less fun.

Alerts from mail, sms messages and calls are for the moment half the point of smart watches. Use the Gear it goes great as long as you use Samsung’s mail service, Samsung’s sms app and … nothing else. Mail from Gmail, tweets, Facebook posts and the like be notified of course, but the one thing you must know is that all information is available in the phone, which effectively kills both choice and the benefits of alerts. Calls are a very confused story, where the Gear seems to have positioned himself as the main tool for answering in phone irrespective of whether you have a headset plugged into your phone or not.

Speaking of Samsung so you have to have a newer Samsung phone to be able to use the device (Note 2, Note 3 and Galaxy S4 at present) since no other brand is compatible yet. It pulls down the potential for the watch something huge.

All the features and apps also makes the battery life will be the real Achilles ‘ heel, with a normal service life of approximately 24 hours.We tried to turn everything we considered unnecessary and hardly used the clock more than notification Center on a weekend and then kept it certainly far longer than one day, but for the price that you hardly use it.

To save battery, Samsung has also chosen to have the screen switched off most of the time. A flick of the wrist to bring the device to show the time, but it works within a time of 10. Instead, you press the power button to see the time, which means that the point of the clock disappears.

This means that you will want to download the clock daily, but instead of having a inbyggs USB plug, such as Sony’s Smartwatch or to run on wireless charging, you must stop the clock in a doll for to be able to download it. Users of the running watches probably recognize the phenomenon, but where Bell need to be loaded once a week at most, not daily. And when it does, you must have a separate charging cradle, how had it been an actual waterproof and scratch resistant clock instead of something that at best is easy splash proof?

With all the electronics built, especially in the bracelet, the watch also both real stiff and very large. The importance is not of worth mentioning, but for those who are accustomed to a regular clock is this big. Even if you have the black model makes it extremely geeky out with his oversized, square design and the built-in camera in your band. Will Smart Watches reach any wider audience, they need to look like a clock from 2013, not like something from a sci-fi-roll from the seventies.

Even if the camera is fun to use is the supposed automatic transmission to your phone very randomly. Usually we had to send over the images manually, while it seemed to work by itself a little sporadic.

The US also in on apps. For those who do not work cleanly, as we mentioned above does not work at all or simply tvärhänger the entire clock. It is perhaps not Samsung’s error, but then the parts of the apps only works with Gear, it is where we are experiencing the problem.

And the price tag? 2 700 bagis is probably okay in terms of amount of features, but the competition is at least a thousand lower and turn Gear on some points.

Wait until the later generation

We would really like Gear, precisely because it both promise and actually manage to make a lot of it we delude ourselves that we expect of a smartwatch. At the same time feels many parts very poorly thought out, locked up for locking in sake, limited or simply buggy.

Much can probably be corrected with substantial updates, but the charging cradle, the battery life and sci-fi design need to be solved in any other way.

It’s simply that if Samsung pushed in everything they could and stirred up the watch to be able to say that they have a smart watch and that they were early. Right now they sure collect user information to see what is being used and how it is used to pull themselves a lot to a Gear 2. Our guess is that we’ll have to wait to Gear 2 or Gear 3 before Samsung actually got into something that is good throughout, instead of being equal parts user satisfaction and frustrated hatred that today’s generation is.