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Samsung's Smart Watch Coming September 4th, Without Flexible OLED Screen

Unknown Lamer posted about a year ago | from the where-are-the-smart-pocket-watches dept.

Handhelds 89

First time accepted submitter lager_monste sent in a tidbit from Mashable about the upcoming Samsung Galaxy Gear Smart Watch: "Samsung will launch its smart watch, the Galaxy Gear, on Sept. 4 ahead of the IFA consumer electronics trade show in Berlin, Germany. Lee Young-hee, VP of Samsung's mobile business, confirmed the date and some details about the device in an interview with The Korea Times." Ars Technica notes that the Gear is nothing like what was expected from a patent filing for a watch with a flexible OLED. Maybe next generation.

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89 comments

Dick Tracy? (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about a year ago | (#44697717)

If it's also a phone and doesn't need another phone to work, I want one.

Re:Dick Tracy? (1)

You're All Wrong (573825) | about a year ago | (#44697833)

Sure, and it's got an 85" 4K screen too, I bet you didn't expect that!

Re:Dick Tracy? (1)

NatasRevol (731260) | about a year ago | (#44698223)

As long as it comes in gold, I'll take 73!

Re:Dick Tracy? (1)

zlives (2009072) | about a year ago | (#44698333)

not available in gold, however it is solar powered so maybe that works ;)

Re:Dick Tracy? (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about a year ago | (#44702183)

Sure, and it's got an 85" 4K screen too, I bet you didn't expect that!

I didn't expect this, [youtube.com] either.

The future is client wearables. (3, Insightful)

tuppe666 (904118) | about a year ago | (#44697837)

If it's also a phone and doesn't need another phone to work, I want one.

I am more concerned that these devices seem to be full computers themselves. I am looking forward to a smartwatch, but having the large screen, with large battery, with large processing power in my big pockets. I would rather a watch be a dumb device and your smart device being your phone.

Re:The future is client wearables. (1)

Nerdfest (867930) | about a year ago | (#44697923)

Likewise. I'm still waiting for my Pebble, which is getting less and less thrilling looking with some of the new devices coming out. Oh well, they seemed to stir up some excitement in these devices anyway.

Re:The future is client wearables. (1)

trevc (1471197) | about a year ago | (#44699587)

Sold my Pebble. Didn't deliver what was promised, at least on iOS.

Re:The future is client wearables. (1)

Andy Dodd (701) | about a year ago | (#44697947)

That's why I'm avoiding the Omate TrueSmart.

I have a Sony Smartwatch, and it is specifically designed to be a dumb second screen for your phone.

Its battery life is not as good as the Pebble or Metawatch due to the full color screen. The MW seems to be a good compromise - reasonably standalone, but still primarily a display for your phone. (The Sony SW is a little "too" dumb when disconnected.)

Re:The future is client wearables. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44698179)

I have a Sony Smart too with designer second screen. Very good!
http://equipepolishop.com.br

Re:The future is client wearables. (2)

ShieldW0lf (601553) | about a year ago | (#44698345)

These "smart watches" seem completely without utility to me. What use do you find for it?

Re:The future is client wearables. (1)

tlhIngan (30335) | about a year ago | (#44699221)

These "smart watches" seem completely without utility to me. What use do you find for it?

They've got plenty of utility, given how big screens on phones are. I mean, if you've received a text, and one hand is busy doing something else, it can be difficult to dig your phone out of your pocket, unlock it and then see the text with your remaining hand. (I'll leave the question of why you can't use both hands up to the imagination - but say, you're carrying a bag or an umbrella...).

Android innovation in hardware drives new markets! People used to use their cellphones as watches, now they need watches to use their smartphones on the go.

Re:The future is client wearables. (2)

CrankyFool (680025) | about a year ago | (#44701691)

I got the Pebble as a lark (and a toy); it's turned out to be profoundly useful for me. Here's how:

1. I'm in meetings much of the day (and anyway, having a loud cell phone is an obnoxious thing in an office environment), so I usually keep my phone on vibrate/silent; I'd routinely miss calendar reminders on my phone (and may be in a meeting that's 1o1 and involves me putting my laptop away). The Pebble buzzes me with calendar reminders so missing a reminder is a thing of the past;

2. Same thing about phone calls and texts; in the middle of a meeting, if I get a text from my wife, then A) I don't miss it; B) (just as importantly) I don't reach into my pocket and start looking at my phone (which is pretty obvious and a bit of a dick move), I can quickly scan the text message on the Pebble. Heck, not being able to respond to the text on the spot turns out to be an advantage in that case -- it's less distracting;

3. I work out, doing about an hour on the treadmill every morning. The Pebble's ability to control my music (especially now that I can use it not just for pause/forward/rewind but also for volume up / down) makes it so I can just put my Android phone away in the treadmill pocket and use the Pebble through my workout.

4. (Side-effect of (3)) I can now much more easily find my phone if it's around (and on) -- I just use the Pebble to start playing music on the phone, optionally raising the volume. It's been handy. Especially because lowering the volume on the ringer (making it so asking my wife to call me, for example, won't help) doesn't lower the volume on the music play AND because even if the music volume is low, I can raise the volume from the Pebble.

Frankly, for me -- speaking as someone who has many watches because I sort of collect them -- the saddest thing about the Pebble is that I'm no longer interested in rotating watches -- I wear the Pebble all the time because it's so damn useful.

Re:The future is client wearables. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44697971)

Invest now in the iDildo. SSD storage up the ass! Put the cloud where the sun don't shine!

This product is not returnable.

Not so fast, a newer entry inserts itself (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44698641)

Based on your rumor that there may be an iDildo, Samsung is proud to present the Samsung Stuffer, offering even fuller penetration and a 2x larger circumference! And to one-up your iDildo, we are proud to introduce the used Samsung Stuffer marketplace, where you can buy Samsung Stuffers previously used by well regarded to skanky porn stars.

Re:The future is client wearables. (2)

timeOday (582209) | about a year ago | (#44698103)

You will certainly get what you want (a wearable display for your phone) long before a practical standalone smartwatch is feasible. Currently, wristwatches with just a GPS receiver (no transmitting) have an 8 hour battery life, at most. There is no way somebody is suddenly going to release a smartphone small enough to pass as a wristwatch.

Re:The future is client wearables. (0)

mspohr (589790) | about a year ago | (#44700047)

These people (Omate) seem to be making a good try at a standalone smartphone as a wristwatch.
http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/omate/omate-truesmart-water-resistant-standalone-smartwa [kickstarter.com]
I've been thinking about getting one. Looks it will have everything I would want. It operates as a standalone smartphone including touch screen, speaker, microphone... even a camera. Nice design and a bit smaller than the "sport" watch I currently wear. Can also link to a "full size" smartphone via WiFi or Bluetooth. Even waterproof to wear while swimming, etc. They are predicting delivery in October and November this year.

Re:The future is client wearables. (1)

timeOday (582209) | about a year ago | (#44700437)

I saw somebody posted the link a few messages down. To me the specs look like they from about 4 years in the future, and I find it hard to believe it won't be very compromised in some way - battery life, size, or reception. It would be so fantastic if I'm dead wrong.

Re:The future is client wearables. (1)

Grizzley9 (1407005) | about a year ago | (#44698949)

If it's also a phone and doesn't need another phone to work, I want one.

I am more concerned that these devices seem to be full computers themselves. I am looking forward to a smartwatch, but having the large screen, with large battery, with large processing power in my big pockets. I would rather a watch be a dumb device and your smart device being your phone.

While true and I'd like to see it too, I wonder if Palm's history isn't a gauge to think about. It was a different time for sure (a whole 6 years ago!) but they tried to release the Foleo to be a companion to their smartphones but due to tech writers and others outcry, it never was launched. Sure it's just another accessory to your phone like a cover or speaker or something but I would imagine the market is pretty small for smart watches that only work with a particular brand.

Re:The future is client wearables. (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about a year ago | (#44702163)

I am more concerned that these devices seem to be full computers themselves.

Not to mention the drain from the screen. Old LCD watches used tiny hearing aid batteries that lasted for months. Of course, the radio would use a lot of power when it was being used as a phone. I don't see a good watch phone having a lot of processing power, but that seems what they're aiming for.

Re:Dick Tracy? (2)

Janek Kozicki (722688) | about a year ago | (#44697911)

If it's also a phone and doesn't need another phone to work, I want one.

Well, this one works like you want: slahdot story [slashdot.org] , kickstarter [kickstarter.com]

Re:Dick Tracy? (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about a year ago | (#44702139)

The problem is "The specs are impressive". I want good battery life and only need it to make phone calls and tell time. I'd want a reflectively backlit LCD screen on it so I could tell time in sunlight and the batteries would last.

I had an old original Razr that held a charge for three or four days, depending on how much time I spent watching YouTube videos. It was only a tiny bit too large to be a watch. Something like that only a little bit smaller with a touchscreen rather than buttons with a low power LCD screen would be perfect.

Re:Dick Tracy? (3, Insightful)

Wingsy (761354) | about a year ago | (#44698131)

You have any idea how much talk time you would get from a battery that can fit inside a watch? We need a few of those revolutionary battery breakthroughs that we've read about for years to happen first.

Re:Dick Tracy? (1)

danomac (1032160) | about a year ago | (#44698577)

Until they figure out how to incorporate the battery in the wrist straps. Problem solved!

Re:Dick Tracy? (1)

mjwx (966435) | about a year ago | (#44702279)

You have any idea how much talk time you would get from a battery that can fit inside a watch? We need a few of those revolutionary battery breakthroughs that we've read about for years to happen first.

How small can you make battery cells? Small enough to fit inside the links of the watch band?

Erm... Patent pending.

Re:Dick Tracy? (1)

Wingsy (761354) | about a year ago | (#44704497)

This should be obvious, but maybe not...

Yeah, they can surely make them small. But with smallness comes small capacity. It should go without saying but a battery 1/10th the size of today's typical cell phone battery would only get 1/10th the talk time. So, what, 30 minutes tops?

And another thing: How would you use it to talk? Like Dick Tracy does? That's fine if you don't care about others near you hearing both sides of the conversation (and being intensely annoying to some bystanders). What do you do for a private conversation, hold it to your ear? Imagine that for a minute. It would look about as ridiculous as someone talking with a phablet.

Re:Dick Tracy? (1)

mjwx (966435) | about a year ago | (#44712535)

This should be obvious, but maybe not...

Yeah, they can surely make them small. But with smallness comes small capacity. It should go without saying but a battery 1/10th the size of today's typical cell phone battery would only get 1/10th the talk time. So, what, 30 minutes tops?

This should be obvious, but maybe not.

on a typical watch that is connected by links (you know, the metal studs) there is significant area in the links themselves. If you were to put a cell in each one and link them together, you can reduce the size of the face.

And another thing: How would you use it to talk? Like Dick Tracy does? That's fine if you don't care about others near you hearing both sides of the conversation (and being intensely annoying to some bystanders). What do you do for a private conversation, hold it to your ear? Imagine that for a minute. It would look about as ridiculous as someone talking with a phablet.

This may be obvious, but maybe not.

We already have a solution to this, I use it to skype on my 10" tablet.

It's called a headset. I connects via bluetooth.

Turanga Leela? (1)

dkleinsc (563838) | about a year ago | (#44698701)

Nothing quite like having a futuristic wristlojackimator. And it saves a bunch of hassle in reaching into a pocket to pull out a cell phone.

Of course, it makes it quite a bit more awkward to film everything in sight, but that's not something I do anyways.

What's with the negative attitude? (2)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about a year ago | (#44697741)

Why do some people seem to bummed that the screen isn't flexible? Considering it was just a few tech demos and a patent filing it's not like it's a major let-down or anything. How about looking at the device's functionality? TFA says almost nothing about it, like what OS it runs or what capabilities it has.

This story is pretty lame.

Screen Real Estate (4, Insightful)

tuppe666 (904118) | about a year ago | (#44697851)

Why do some people seem to bummed that the screen isn't flexible?

Because without it being flexible it is limited to 2" by 2" display as opposed to a 6" by 2" display. Whatever you think of that.

Re:Screen Real Estate (2)

Tony Isaac (1301187) | about a year ago | (#44698141)

Screen real estate would be a real issue if you think of a smart watch as a wearable version of cell phones as we know them. If that's the standard, then even a 6" x 2" screen will disappoint.

Cell phones have already displaced watches. Why? Because they have bigger screens? No, not really. The bigger screen is useful for other phone features, but it didn't really improve much on what watches do best. It's more that most of us didn't see a need any longer to keep two timepieces, so we ditched our watches.

To be successful, smart watches will have to find a niche that doesn't require much screen real estate. They will also have to find a role beyond just duplicating what a cell phone does--but on your wrist--because in that role, they will always be inferior to cell phones.

Re:Screen Real Estate (1)

cayenne8 (626475) | about a year ago | (#44699301)

Cell phones have already displaced watches. Why? Because they have bigger screens? No, not really. The bigger screen is useful for other phone features, but it didn't really improve much on what watches do best. It's more that most of us didn't see a need any longer to keep two timepieces, so we ditched our watches.

Well, I guess many that only had cheap timex or mickey watches would ditch them, but many folks have nice ones that are not only time pieces, but considered jewelry too.

Some people like to dress nice...and, many women out there, not only notice what shoes you're wearing, but also what other things you have on, like watches, rings..etc.

Just sayin'.

Re:Screen Real Estate (2)

bonehead (6382) | about a year ago | (#44702173)

It's more that most of us didn't see a need any longer to keep two timepieces, so we ditched our watches.

Speak for yourself. There's no way I want to dig something out of my pocket and turn it on just to check the time. And, yes, seeing someone using a phone as a timepiece does affect my assessment of their intelligence.

Re:Screen Real Estate (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44698285)

But its running Android. How dare you not tow the party line?! Or now that Moto is back, are you Samsung hating Tuppe?

Robert Rankin

Re:Screen Real Estate (1)

camperdave (969942) | about a year ago | (#44698511)

Judging from recent attempts, I can only see one side of my wrist at a time. Having a display that wraps around my wrist would constantly put at least half of it on the wrong side. I would suggest placing the display lengthways, parallel to the forearm, but then you're hindered by long sleeved clothing. Wrist mount displays? There's got to be a better way.

Re:Screen Real Estate (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44699363)

with OLED flexible screen it should be a screen that can go 360 around the wrist, i would not mind if it was larger than a watch.

With some embedded device to tell when it's facing up so your main display rotates to the right angle and a way to freeze the position easily + a full mobile watch that does not need another device to work = Whoaaaa
Not the samsung though nor Apple it seems

Re:Screen Real Estate (1)

H0p313ss (811249) | about a year ago | (#44701783)

Why do some people seem to bummed that the screen isn't flexible?

Because without it being flexible it is limited to 2" by 2" display as opposed to a 6" by 2" display. Whatever you think of that.

A 6" by 2" watch is not a watch... it's a wearable computer.

Remember the casio calculator watch from the 80's and how much of a nerd you had to be to wear one?

Re:Screen Real Estate (1)

H0p313ss (811249) | about a year ago | (#44701799)

Why do some people seem to bummed that the screen isn't flexible?

Because without it being flexible it is limited to 2" by 2" display as opposed to a 6" by 2" display. Whatever you think of that.

A 6" by 2" watch is not a watch... it's a wearable computer.

Remember the casio calculator watch from the 80's and how much of a nerd you had to be to wear one?

And I'm thinking in metric... 2" x 2" ... ? That's almost half the size of an iPhone, still well in "spot the nerd" territory.

Re:Screen Real Estate (1)

Macchendra (2919537) | about a year ago | (#44704097)

Probably more like bluetooth headsets than calculator watches. It'll be "spot the douche".

Re:What's with the negative attitude? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44697907)

It's like the Xoom... they get it out before Apple gets the same functionality to the public, but not many people go for it. Then Apple will make the news for a year or two, before Samsung ends up winning in sheer volume in the end.

Re:What's with the negative attitude? (1)

Wingsy (761354) | about a year ago | (#44704547)

What's the goal of any tech company? To make money. How do they do that? They sell widgets.

You'd think that if you sold the most widgets then you'd make the most money, but that's not what's happening. So the "winner" isn't the one who sells the most but the one who is more successful in the company's prime directive: To Make Money.

Another thing. You say "get it out before Apple gets the same functionality to the public", but I'll guarantee that if you actually used both products for a bit, you'll be amazed at how the same functionality could possibly be so different.

Re:What's with the negative attitude? (2)

rsborg (111459) | about a year ago | (#44697937)

Why do some people seem to bummed that the screen isn't flexible? Considering it was just a few tech demos and a patent filing it's not like it's a major let-down or anything.

Because it's vaporware and only diminishes what shipping products today [1] have beat Samsung to doing. I hated the vapor-filled promises put forth by Microsoft in previous years and this year's vapor by Samsung isn't any different.

[1] http://getpebble.com/ [getpebble.com]

Where is Tuppe666 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44697761)

Where is Tuppe666 to tell us how great Google is and how much Apple will rip Samsung off.

Hail Google!

Samsung vs Apple (0)

tuppe666 (904118) | about a year ago | (#44698143)

Where is Tuppe666 to tell us how great Google is and how much Apple will rip Samsung off.

Hail Google!

I think what will become of smartphones is still very much in the air. Google still not have shown their smart watch neither as Apple. In fact we can only see a 3D rendering of the samsung watch. The only thing we can really say about Apple is they are launching a product in a very crowded market of already smart watches, some like pebble and Sony looking at a new revision already. That must worry investors and fanatics alike especially for an unproven idea. Its even worse for smartTV especially as Google seems to have finally solved that with chromecast. Have you tried it from your iPhone yet :). Hail Google indeed :)

Love the fact that Samsung have succeeded in brainwashing you into thinking its a Apple vs Samsung fight...genius marketing from Samsung...something Apple needs right now (Made in China).

Re:Samsung vs Apple (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44698243)

LOL at chromecast

You still can't share local data from your mobile or desktop devices.

Let us know if that happens this year.

Re:Samsung vs Apple (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44698619)

The Made in China thing is a riot. As soon as Motorola releases a single assembled in USA device all the Google fantards latch onto it.

Forget that Apple assembles iPhone 5s in Brazil, iMacs in America. Semiconductors all come from Guangdong, don't be a tool.

Re:Samsung vs Apple (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44699445)

As soon as Motorola releases a single assembled in USA device all the Google fantards latch onto it.

I worked for Motorola back when they moved manufacturing of cell phones from IL (Libertyville and some way out suburb into cows...inside joke) to China. An absolutely state-of-the-art facility (I work in manufacturing automation) shut down for a few dollars savings. Really a shame.

The days of Motorola known for high-quality design was over a long time ago

Fortunately, the real spirit of Motorola remains in the non-cell businesses (that aren't part of Google)...best land-mobile products around for police and fire.

Re:Samsung vs Apple (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44699251)

"herpa der Google der Google der! GOOGLE der google der herp a derp" --average Tupe666 comment

Re:Samsung vs Apple (1)

Quila (201335) | about a year ago | (#44699287)

This watch one is interesting given the history.

Think tablets, they were around, and Apple was working on a tablet since 2001. But Apple refused to release one until they thought they could do it right. They even released the iPhone as a rushed side project in 2007, but still couldn't get the tablet down. All this time others were producing tablets that basically sucked. Finally they did it, people loved it, and Apple owned the market for a while until others could duplicate what they did.

Given that Apple is known to have been working on a watch for a couple of years, we may see a repeat. Or Apple's watch may suck. Who knows?

Re:Samsung vs Apple (1)

bonehead (6382) | about a year ago | (#44702235)

Apple was working on a tablet since 2001. But Apple refused to release one until they thought they could do it right.

Apple was working on tablets long before that.

And when they "thought they could do it right" and released the first one, the market let them know loud and clear that they had NOT gotten it right.

They didn't get it right until MUCH later. (It's debatable whether they have gotten it right yet.)

Re:Samsung vs Apple (1)

Quila (201335) | about a year ago | (#44705913)

And when they "thought they could do it right" and released the first one, the market let them know loud and clear that they had NOT gotten it right.

Apple was working on a PDA, a term actually invented for the Newton. What killed that was a complete lack of vision in the company and scope creep from hell. That's the Sculley years for you.

But something did come out of it: The company that designs the ARM architecture, now ARM Holdings, was created by Acorn, Apple and VLSI to make the ARM chip for the Newton. This would be the basis for all future portable and embedded ARM implementations.

They didn't get it right until MUCH later. (It's debatable whether they have gotten it right yet.)

Everything can be refined, but given that all following tablets copied the iPad, and using this model have managed to encroach on the PC market, they definitely got it right.

real question (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44697831)

is it water-tight to 50 meters?
prolly lose ..errr... sell more if they break forgotten in teh shower.

Re:real question (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44697877)

Last time Samsung sold a water-tight phone, it, well, wasn't.

Product lauch, or concept demo? (1)

timeOday (582209) | about a year ago | (#44697873)

The article says, "we will be introducing a new wearable concept device..." So is this going to be marketed, or just a concept vehicle (perhaps to let some air out of a possible Apple iWatch announcement?)

Re:Product lauch, or concept demo? (3, Insightful)

Savage-Rabbit (308260) | about a year ago | (#44698757)

The article says, "we will be introducing a new wearable concept device..." So is this going to be marketed, or just a concept vehicle (perhaps to let some air out of a possible Apple iWatch announcement?)

I the whole iWatch rumour mill has me completely confused. One thing I do know, if Apple managed to sucker everybody into building 'smart-watches' just by leaking the product name 'iWatch' and the damn thing turns out to be their long rumoured TV thingamabob (as in: iWatch TV) I'm going to laugh my head off.

Re:Product lauch, or concept demo? (1)

Quila (201335) | about a year ago | (#44699315)

Apple has hired people who best match a wearable device product, such as the fitness guru behind the Nike band. It's not going to be the TV.

Re:Product lauch, or concept demo? (1)

timeOday (582209) | about a year ago | (#44700561)

It is all a question of timing, but it is practically unavoidable fairly soon. Having shrunk from mainframes to minis to workstations, desktops, laptops, netbooks, now smartphones, the next size reduction must be a "wearable" of some sort, and Google seems to be getting a lot of resistance to Glass. My guess is an iPhone-tethered watch.

Re:Product lauch, or concept demo? (1)

gtall (79522) | about a year ago | (#44700477)

Wow, a wearable concept device!!! That sounds metaphysical. "Hi Harry, what are you doing there?"..."Oh, hi Larry, I'm confused, do we live to be or be to live? This wearable concept device keeps coming up with 'The mist falls steeply, the trees abide.' I don't get it."

Re:Product lauch, or concept demo? (1)

H0p313ss (811249) | about a year ago | (#44702003)

Wow, a wearable concept device!!! That sounds metaphysical. "Hi Harry, what are you doing there?"..."Oh, hi Larry, I'm confused, do we live to be or be to live? This wearable concept device keeps coming up with 'The mist falls steeply, the trees abide.' I don't get it."

Actually... it would sell like hotcakes with the wanna-be set.

Dude, check it out! My watch is even more pretentious than I am!

They still haven't explained what this does (2)

asmkm22 (1902712) | about a year ago | (#44697909)

What exactly do these smart watches do? Do they just tell time and maybe connect to wifi for stock numbers or something? I don't get it.

Re:They still haven't explained what this does (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44697977)

Hands-free pr0n delivery.

Re:They still haven't explained what this does (2)

Dixie_Flatline (5077) | about a year ago | (#44698025)

Nobody knows what they do yet. To me this seems like a way to get a drop on Apple and say that they had a watch out before. If and when an Apple device hits is when we'll see motion in the market, whether that device is good or bad.

Not having the first product on the market has never bothered Apple before, so I'm not sure what Samsung is trying to get out of this other than bragging rights. Or, who knows, maybe everyone will want one!

As it stands, I can't think of many things that sound more useless than a 'smart' watch. The only good suggestion I've seen so far has the phone in the pocket while direction prompts from your GPS pop up on the watch face. But if that's the best that we're going to get, I'll pass.

Re:They still haven't explained what this does (4, Interesting)

_anomaly_ (127254) | about a year ago | (#44698559)

Nobody knows what they do yet.

Wrong, unless you're only talking about these yet-to-be-released smart watches. Anyone with a Pebble or Metawatch can knows what they do.

I finally got my pebble about 3 months ago, so let me give you my $0.02 worth.

I don't use my phone a whole lot. It's a personal phone, so I don't use it for work, except when I'm away from the office I will occasionally check and respond to email. I purchased a pebble because I thought it sounded like a cool idea, and I could use a new, decent-looking watch (I already had a couple of standard watches that I'd use when camping, hiking, or doing other things outdoors where the watch may be subject to minor abuse). At the $150 price-point, it was not a big leap, even for someone who isn't using their phone non-stop.

I not only thought the pebble looked good, but I also liked the idea of being able to have any number of customized watch faces and having the ability to create my own (with their SDK).

I liked the idea of keeping my phone on silent, in my pocket, checking texts and incoming phone calls by glancing at my wrist when it vibrates. Being able to receive all notifications you would receive on your cell phone on the watch itself, without having to take my phone out of my pocket (or laptop bag, etc) was enough to sell me on it.

And I think it's enough for there to be a market for these smart/dumb watches. This isn't even to mention the many "apps" out there being created for the pebble. One that I've actually used is the FreeCaddie app that uses your phone's GPS to send yardage information to your watch while playing golf. It may seem impractical in that most golfers I know don't want to keep their phone in their pocket, or a watch on their wrist, while playing, but strapping my watch to the golf cart and keeping the phone in my bag is a really convenient way to get GPS on the course, without spending $300 on another device.

I think the fact that I'm not a hardcore hardware geek, only having used my pebble fairly lightly, and I still find it worth the money and useful is (albeit anecdotal) evidence that smart watches do have a market and I believe it's here to stay. The key will be getting the buyers to take that initial leap since, on the surface, they seem superfluous when you're already carrying around a smart phone.

If and when an Apple device hits is when we'll see motion in the market, whether that device is good or bad.

You may be right in that it could take a big player like Apple, or Samsung, to enter the market before we know if the general public will bite. However, since Pebble has hit Best Buy, we just might know before Apple does anything.

Re:They still haven't explained what this does (1)

_anomaly_ (127254) | about a year ago | (#44698569)

can knows what they do

I cringe at my own faux pas.

Re:They still haven't explained what this does (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44703033)

Maybe Samsung just want to get the "Chronograph Apparatus with rounded corner" out first this time to avoid another stinker from Apple...

Re:They still haven't explained what this does (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44707651)

What Samsung gets is a parade of fanboys posting to the comments section of every blog and online news site saying "Yeah whatever, Apple just following again. They aren't capable of innovating anymore!"

Even though whatever they produce will likely have features not combined anywhere previously, and it will be done in a novel and useful way.

Re:They still haven't explained what this does (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44698075)

What exactly do these smart watches do?

Details, details [waves hand]

People who buy these things will likely already own and regularly carry an oversized smartphone, an undersized tablet and a laptop on a regular basis. Note the massive functional crossover between these devices. The primary distinguishing feature is form factor.

So there is your answer -- what smart watches "do" is induce people to spend money on redundant mobile capabilities, albeit in a different form factor.

Re:They still haven't explained what this does (2)

joh (27088) | about a year ago | (#44698245)

Nobody knows, that's the problem.

But: Don't call it a watch. Or only if you call your smartphone a "pocket watch" just because it can display the time and you have it in your pocket.

I think selecting features that make sense and executing this in a way that you want to use them is the really hard thing here. Just squeezing a small Android device with a tiny screen and battery into a huge watch isn't going to make it sell.

Re:They still haven't explained what this does (1)

_anomaly_ (127254) | about a year ago | (#44698591)

He/she didn't, and no one else is. It's being a called a smart watch. Just like your smart phone isn't just a phone, like the rotary kind that used to sit on your (grand)parents' night stand.

Perfect (0)

ThatsNotPudding (1045640) | about a year ago | (#44698125)

Samsung panics and rushes out some thrown-together POS and the only thing it's going to accomplish is make whatever overpriced, walled-gardened bauble Apple finally rolls out look like the Second Coming in comparison. This is so bone-headed of them, it almost feels like 'sung and Cupertino are colluding.

When the iWatch does come out, best wear some wading boots if you'll be around fanbois, as the excretions will be record-setting.

Re:Perfect (1)

Bob the Super Hamste (1152367) | about a year ago | (#44698287)

Only wading boots, I was thinking more along the lines of chest waders [fleetfarm.com] .

Re:Perfect (1)

joh (27088) | about a year ago | (#44698375)

Do you know what's really funny? Even as you smirk at Apple and Apple's customers you totally expect Apple to come up with a better product than Samsung is able to.

Re:Perfect (1)

idontgno (624372) | about a year ago | (#44698497)

If you're even fainly unprejudiced, you'll realize there are two undeniable truths underpinning GPP's assertions:

The self-evident "meh"-ness of Samsung's concept device, and the Pavlovian responsiveness of Apple's advocacy.

As to your assertion, I'm pretty sure my 7-year-old could come out with something better than this loser from Samsung. Apple's engineering varies between fairly good and awesome, but you don't even have to be fairly good to get over the ridiculously low bar this proposed POS sets.

Re:Perfect (1)

Nerdfest (867930) | about a year ago | (#44698771)

Apple's engineering varies between fairly good and awesome

True, but their control fetish varies between fanatical and fascist. While they have the advantage of being the sole hardware provider their products need to work with, they cripple their devices so much it greatly reduces the flexibility.

Re:Perfect (1)

joh (27088) | about a year ago | (#44700543)

Apple's engineering varies between fairly good and awesome

True, but their control fetish varies between fanatical and fascist. While they have the advantage of being the sole hardware provider their products need to work with, they cripple their devices so much it greatly reduces the flexibility.

Maybe, but flexibility is the last thing you want because then you would need to find out what the damned thing is actually good for all by yourself. You'd get maximal flexibility out of a smartwatch that just runs Android on a 2" screen. It also would be totally useless for most people.

The point of such appliances really is that someone else already put lots of work and thought into what it's good for and optimizes the device for that. Some people call that "control fetish" other call it outsourcing boring work and getting a device that gets to the point and does something useful as it is.

Re:Perfect (1)

the computer guy nex (916959) | about a year ago | (#44698819)

Samsung panics and rushes out some thrown-together POS and the only thing it's going to accomplish is make whatever overpriced, walled-gardened bauble Apple finally rolls out look like the Second Coming in comparison. This is so bone-headed of them, it almost feels like 'sung and Cupertino are colluding. When the iWatch does come out, best wear some wading boots if you'll be around fanbois, as the excretions will be record-setting.

There were dozens of MP3 players out before the iPod, dozens of tablets before the iPad, and dozens of smartphones before the iPhone. None of these companies were "colluding" with Apple.

Apple doesn't do things first, they do it *right* first. Then the Asian copycats come out.

Way to go, Samsung rep! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44698153)

"Young-hee did state that flexible OLED is still in Samsung's plans for "future products" "

You should read a bit on the Osborne effect. It would do you (and Samsung) some good.

That value does it add? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44698219)

I like the idea of a wrist phone but at the current level of technology it doesn't offer any advantage over my current phone. Without a flexible screen I may as well strap my Galaxy to my wrist.

I'd like to see something like one of those old snap bracelets that can make phone calls.

So samsung smart watch is DOA (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44698255)

Are they purposely trying to be DOA?

Non-flexible OLED screen is not the issue... (5, Funny)

RedHackTea (2779623) | about a year ago | (#44698343)

...But does it have "Ctrl+Shift+T" functionality to see the last Time you looked at the Time on the watch? A sort of "Ctrl+Z" for the Time?

About those OLEDs... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44698533)

Samsung OLEDs look like crap. Dim, terrible off-axis viewing, blown out color.
gag

Of course not! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44700013)

They have to wait for Apple to release a wearable device, THEN they can plan their next generation.

Absolutely, utterly no way! (2, Insightful)

occasional_dabbler (1735162) | about a year ago | (#44700627)

Carry whatever tech you want in your backpack (I do) but the thing on your wrist should be mechanical and made in Switzerland or you'll never get either a girlfriend or a job. Nothing that a tech company makes will ever be as beautiful as this [iwc.com]

Re:Absolutely, utterly no way! (2)

Dr. Zim (21278) | about a year ago | (#44701233)

Got both without spending $20K on a luxury watch I'd tear up inside a week. Spent the same money on a sport touring bike instead to spend long weekends with the (girlfriend->wife) and away from the job.

If you need to spend $20k on a watch to impress people, you're compensating for something.

Re:Absolutely, utterly no way! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44701721)

Um... anything in particular? You linked to a front page and I failed to find anything being sold there that wasn't absurdly overpriced, practically useless, and hideous to my eye. I genuinely hope you're some sort of troll and didn't actually waste your money on something like that.

But speaking of trolls, I have a watch rant....

There are three classes of people who are able to wear watches without looking like douchebags today:

1) The high-powered big boys and girls, for whom small details in appearance can threaten billion-dollar deals or state-level negotiations. They have a TEAM of people managing their schedule, so the fact that a watch can tell time with any degree of accuracy is meaningless. They probably don't even carry their own mobile device.
2) The people who need to manage their time while getting their hands dirty in a literal sense. Farmers, soldiers, law enforcement, rescue workers, physical trainers, etc. They probably don't have a cell phone in their pocket or a laptop in their backpack, either.
3) School teachers, veterans, the elderly, and the like. The people that have actually earned or inherently deserve respect and can wear whatever they damn well please.

For the millions of wannabe suits out there, though, a watch is just a petty, pissant power play. They show off their luxury accessories and fantasize about bigger paychecks and corner offices while they bullshit their way through life. If your watch costs as much as a car and you're not actually responsible for something of significant impact, you're just a deluded asshole. Makes it easy to identify the scum of the Earth, though.

Re:Absolutely, utterly no way! (2)

H0p313ss (811249) | about a year ago | (#44701923)

the thing on your wrist should be mechanical and made in Switzerland or you'll never get either a girlfriend or a job.

Now that's just bullshit.

Yes, an elegant watch is a smart move to behave like an adult, trying to check the time on your phone when you're sitting down at a dinner or conference table is just made of fail

No, your life won't completely suck if it's digital or made in Japan. It's no longer the 1980's, even bloody Casio makes dress watches [casio.com] . While some of them are still butt-ugly, this one [casio.com] does the trick and it's only $50.

Personally I went for this pretty little number. [skagen.com] Elegant enough to wear in public without embarrassing your wife, girlfriend or CEO but cheap enough so that when it breaks or gets lost I won't even flinch. (It actually did get lost, inside a couch for eight months, still had the right time when I found it if that had been a Swiss watch I'd have been in deep fecal matter.)

Re:Absolutely, utterly no way! (1)

H0p313ss (811249) | about a year ago | (#44701965)

Personally I went for this pretty little number. [skagen.com]

(And I was shocked by the number of compliments it drew from co-workers... "Hey! Nice watch!... for a $100 Japanese watch.... now that I think about it, if that's the effect it has perhaps a Swiss watch would get me laid by random strangers...)

Re:Absolutely, utterly no way! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44703099)

You most assuredly are a fucking idiot.

Re:Absolutely, utterly no way! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44703123)

Seriously... you have a point on mechanical watches, they are a work of art.. but I wouldn't spend that much money just because of the Swiss made label. The Japanese, Seiko and Orient, have their own in house mechanical movements and cost a fraction. Their quality is about as good if not better in some cases.

Even the Chinese Seagull movements have good value for money

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