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LG and Samsung announce new smartwatches ahead of Apple's anticipated 'iWatch' reveal [u]

post #1 of 90
Thread Starter 
In a possible bid to get word out before an expected Apple iWatch announcement sucks the air out of the room, LG on Wednesday took the wraps off a circular display-toting G Watch R, while Samsung touted a new cellular 3G-equipped Gear S smartwatch.




LG's announcement comes as somewhat of a surprise given the company just this weekend teased the G Watch R in a YouTube video touting the device's circular display and supposed reveal at this year's IFA, which is set to kick off on Sept. 5.

According to Engadget, the G Watch R boasts a full 360-degree 1.3-inch, 320-by-320-pixel Plastic OLED (P-OLED) display and case styling more in line with classic wristwatches than modern smartwatch products like Pebble or Samsung's Galaxy Gear lineup.

The wearable is meant to complement LG's existing offerings, including the current square-screened G Watch that was first announced in March. Interestingly, the upcoming version takes cues from Motorola's Moto 360 that was announced alongside the original G Watch as one of the first devices to run Google's Android Wear operating system.

LG is touting the G Watch R's unique circular form factor as a main selling point, poking fun at the Moto 360's "flat tire" design in this past weekend's video. The Moto 360's display is not a complete circle, having a bottom slice cut out to house an ambient light sensor and screen control circuitry.

Aside from the format change, however, the G Watch R appears to be a repackaged version of the original G Watch model. Both run a 1.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 chipset with 512MB of RAM, include 4GB of flash storage and come with interchangeable straps. The new version does feature a heart rate monitor built into the case back, as well as a physical power button that doubles as the watch's crown, much like the Moto 360.

LG's G Watch R is expected to see limited release in the fourth quarter, meaning it will face stiff competition from the likes of Motorola, Samsung and possibly Apple.




Samsung on Wednesday also announced a new smartwatch called the Gear S, which features a curved two-inch Super AMOLED display, heart rate sensor, turn-by-turn navigation via Nokia's HERE and two days of battery life. One of the more novel capabilities is 3G cellular connectivity, which supports both voice calling and data transfer when phone tethering is not available.

A report earlier today claimed Apple is planning to announce its own highly anticipated entry into the smartwatch segment at a special event on Sept. 9, which is also expected to feature the next-generation iPhone lineup.

Update: This story has been updated to include Samsung's latest Galaxy Gear entry that was also announced on Wednesday.
post #2 of 90

vaporware

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post #3 of 90
It is interesting if the face is a display and changes and can be anything. The teaser photos don't make that clear. It looks like a nice but pretty standard analog watch in the photos. Something you could get for $40 in ok quality.
post #4 of 90
I think that the hardest thing that Apple is going to have is that as a fashion item, it's not great if the watch is ubiquitous. This is where I think that Android will actually do well, if they can convince experienced watch makers end up using Android Wear to release their own smart watches.

In any case, it'll be interesting to see what (if anything) Apple does. Still kind of think this wearables thing is a fad.
post #5 of 90
Yawn.
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post #6 of 90
Screen always visible (without weird twitches or gestures) or not?

Battery life for days, or not?

If those don't have good answers, then chasing the "watch" concept is barking up the wrong tree.

Still, throw enough stuff at the wall, and a some of it will be right for some small segment out there.

At least it looks watch-like! Motorola failed in that attempt.
post #7 of 90

It's still some solid defensive maneuvering, since this glut of boring junk has blunted the impact of Apple's big breakthrough.  Fingers crossed that the "wearable thing" can still make a splash.  I agree with Drealoth that wearables doesn't seem like something that will have longevity, a bit like Casio's calculator watches back in the 80s.

post #8 of 90
It does appear that LG and Samsung believe the iWatch announcement rumor to be credible. I kind of like the look of the Samsung one--probably because it looks like a shrunken iPhone 3G, molded to fit a wrist.

I don't think I'm really in the market for such a product. I like a watch to be a functional piece of jewelry. However, I look forward to seeing what Apple brings to market.
post #9 of 90

The storied, celebrated Swiss timepiece makers have been put on notice. The Koreans are coming.

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post #10 of 90
The LG G Watch R looks great IMHO. The Samsung one though, VOMIT!
post #11 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post
 

The storied, celebrated Swiss timepiece makers have been put on notice. The Koreans are coming.


funny enough, Korea has a swiss movement watch company called Romanson (and is in Switzerland). They are getting very favourable reviews.

post #12 of 90
I think it looks nice. Increases my curiosity about Apple's presumed forthcoming offering.
post #13 of 90
Looking at the back of the Samscum POS, it looks thick as a brick!
post #14 of 90

That LG "teaser" looks like something I could whip up in Photoshop and Final Cut in an afternoon. Doesn't mean that the device is going to be any good. Like was said before... vaporware.

 

I'm not sure who Samsung is designing for. Buzz Lightyear perhaps? Does it come with a laser weapon too?

post #15 of 90

Idiotic and desperate duo.

post #16 of 90

Are you able to change the band on the SameDung watch? If not, that's a fail.

 

I did a quick search but couldn't find any information on being able to change the band.

post #17 of 90

And Calvin says to Hobbes, "Throw one more glob of goop on the wall there for me, will ya?  I have a feeling this one's gonna stick.  And if not this, then the next one."

post #18 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by CrashMyTstDummy View Post
 

Are you able to change the band on the SameDung watch? If not, that's a fail.

 

I think you just might have hit upon the secret to success in the smart watch industry.

post #19 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chandra69 View Post
 

Idiotic and desperate duo.


Idiotic? Aren't we getting a bit ahead of ourselves here? 

post #20 of 90
The iWatch isn't a smartwatch in a different form factor. The iWatch is a culmination of Apple's research and development in the quantifiable self. The iWatch has numerous potential applications:

diabetics (glucometer)
fall detection for balance disorder and elderly (3-axis accelerometer, gyroscopic sensor)
heart conditions (heart rate, heart rate variability)
hypertension and hypotension (sphygmomanometer)
military
respiratory conditions (oxygen saturation)
sleep disorders (sleep duration, sleep quality)
sports performance
two-factor authentication (biometric authentication)
weight loss (activity tracking, caloric expenditure, distance and pace tracking, steps taken, steps climbed)

One or two of these groups might not be a considerable percentage of the population but together these groups are a large potential market.
post #21 of 90
Wow. The watches are already badgered without knowing what they will do. I would expect if Apple releases a smart watch they will explain to us all how it works, why it does what it does and who the intended audience is for. This announcement isn't that, and therefor kinda sucks.
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post #22 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post

Wow. The watches are already badgered without knowing what they will do. I would expect if Apple releases a smart watch they will explain to us all how it works, why it does what it does and who the intended audience is for. This announcement isn't that, and therefor kinda sucks.

1) These sort of announcements make me think they know Apple is close to announcing their wrist-worn computing accessory

2) AnandTech states the Samsung device will last two days of normal use between charges with its 300 mAh battery. Not exactly a home run, but if you take it off and charge when you shower that should be enough time to keep it charged up indefinitely. That certainly worked with my Fitbit Force. Regardless, the Samsung device is both ugly and huge. It's a thick display with a thick band and a thick backing. It also has a micro-SIM card slot taking up room and therefore a cellular chips, radio(s) and antennas. I don't see that as the way to go with this device. I think an accessory to a smartphone is the way to go.

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post #23 of 90
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Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

2) AnandTech states the Samsung device will last two days of normal use between charges with its 300 mAh battery. Not exactly a home run, but if you take it off and charge when you shower that should be enough time to keep it charged up indefinitely. That certainly worked with my Fitbit Force. Regardless, the Samsung device is both ugly and huge. It's a thick display with a thick band and a thick backing. It also has a micro-SIM card slot taking up room and therefore a cellular chips, radio(s) and antennas. I don't see that as the way to go with this device. I think an accessory to a smartphone is the way to go.

Darn, I should check that site more.

I think the charging plug ought to be made like the MagSafe on MacBooks, though it looks like this Samsung phone has something similar. Yes, easily charge it in between activities ought to do the trick if the battery isn't large.

A SIM card in a watch is completely useless; I fully agree the watch should be made complementary to a smartphone. What do they think, people stop buying smartphones after getting this watch? Or they did they put assisted GPS on the thing?

Funny that it runs on Tizen, I thought some said it was dead in the water?
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post #24 of 90
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Originally Posted by Drealoth View Post

I think that the hardest thing that Apple is going to have is that as a fashion item, it's not great if the watch is ubiquitous. This is where I think that Android will actually do well, if they can convince experienced watch makers end up using Android Wear to release their own smart watches.

For that reason I put up an idea that Apple might have to shed their one-device-to-rule-them-all modus operandi if they want to dominate this market's profits like it's done with traditional PCs, PMPs, handsets, and tablets. As alien as it would be for Apple to make such a move perhaps the smartest move is to release a plethora of wrist-worn devices with the same basic capabilities but with vastly different focus and styles.

For example, you can buy a $79 sports band that records biometrics for when you're exercising and have a premium looking device that fits a specific style of sophistication and dress that costs $500+, as well as many others in-between. This unusual method could get people to purchase multiple devices all of which would sync to your iPhone via BT as a single reading of your biometrics.

Even licensing or partnership with high-end brands could be a viable option to make this a reality the way Apple had to partner with mobile network operators, music label, movie and television studios, etc. to make the user experience excellent. It's a tough nut, that's for sure.

Quote:
Originally Posted by manfrommars View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Drealoth View Post

In any case, it'll be interesting to see what (if anything) Apple does. Still kind of think this wearables thing is a fad.
I agree with Drealoth that wearables doesn't seem like something that will have longevity, a bit like Casio's calculator watches back in the 80s.

I don't see how wearables aren't the future. They've certainly been part of our past. Watches and headphones have been around from before we were born and now wearables with built-in microprocessors that can connect us to the world at large and measure our biometrics are finally coming into play. I see this as becoming more and more pervasive, not less, as the technology gets smaller, faster, more efficient, and less expensive.
Edited by SolipsismX - 8/27/14 at 10:46pm

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post #25 of 90
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Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post

I think the charging plug ought to be made like the MagSafe on MacBooks, though it looks like this Samsung phone has something similar. Yes, easily charge it in between activities ought to do the trick if the battery isn't large.

1) MagSage only works if it's just for power. If you need to sync via the same cable it's not feasible which is one reason we may never see a MagSafe Lightning cable.

2) I'd personally like it to see inductive charging if it's something that needs to be charged anymore than once a week under normal usage.

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post #26 of 90
LG's watch will be available for sale in Q4. How is that vaporware?
post #27 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post

LG's watch will be available for sale in Q4. How is that vaporware?

It's vapourware until it materializes as something solid. That means an actual demo, actual specs, and a price point. Saying "This will be available in Q4" is as much a legitimate a factual claim at this point as me saying, "I will invent a perpetual motion machine that will be available in Q4."

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post #28 of 90
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Originally Posted by Mazda 3s View Post
 


Idiotic? Aren't we getting a bit ahead of ourselves here? 

 

No.

post #29 of 90
LG's watch looks nice - nicer than the Moto 360. The Samsung watch is ... *yurrrg*

Is that a camera on the back face? WTF are they thinking?
post #30 of 90

I actually really like the design of the LG watch. It looks like a traditional watch. When it comes to wearables, I prefer the traditional watch style compared to the crap Samsung is making. I can't wait to see what Apple has in store for us. I'm really curious to see if Apple is going to release a watch or some sort of band with a display. 

post #31 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post


1) MagSage only works if it's just for power. If you need to sync via the same cable it's not feasible which is one reason we may never see a MagSafe Lightning cable.

2) I'd personally like it to see inductive charging if it's something that needs to be charged anymore than once a week under normal usage.

 

Data sync does not need to be via cable - we're likely talking about 8-16GB max on a watch form factor, and that can be synched via wifi or bluetooth. Not to mention, most data can be "streamed" - look at the Pebble.   In fact the pebble magsafe-like connector is quite workable if a bit 1st-generation.

 

Inductive charging is likely not going to work with the form factor - how big does the inductive circuit need to be on the device?  Sounds too bulky to me.  Again, magsafe like power cord is good enough; better if they can bake it into a watch stand so the thing looks nice while it charges.

post #32 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

1) MagSage only works if it's just for power. If you need to sync via the same cable it's not feasible which is one reason we may never see a MagSafe Lightning cable.

Sorry, should've elaborated on 'like MagSafe'. I mean that is should simply snap on, magnetically. Though on 2nd thought, why would we need to sync it over a wire? Surely the watch won't hold that much data locally; wouldn't wireless be the preferred Apple way of moving data around? That certainly is what they're doing in many applications and devices (iTunes.app, PC-free).

BT4 has a throughput of 24 Mbit/s; wouldn't that be sufficient? Because I don't think a smart watch from Apple will come with gigabytes of storage. That's something the iPhone already has.
Quote:
2) I'd personally like it to see inductive charging if it's something that needs to be charged anymore than once a week under normal usage.

That will probably work, though I would get a 2nd charger for at the office. The great thing about the popularity of the iPhone and iPad is that one can charge it at any friends' house, everyone has (both) plugs.
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post #33 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by r00fus View Post

Inductive charging is likely not going to work with the form factor - how big does the inductive circuit need to be on the device?  Sounds too bulky to me.  Again, magsafe like power cord is good enough; better if they can bake it into a watch stand so the thing looks nice while it charges.

My idea is to work it into the edges of the band going curving around each clasp end and going alongside the face in a full circle so that when tossed on the charging pad it syncs.

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post #34 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by r00fus View Post

Is that a camera on the back face? WTF are they thinking?

It's a kind of camera but that is specifically used as an input device for a biometric sensor.
Edited by SolipsismX - 8/27/14 at 11:14pm

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post #35 of 90


Samsung Gear S Enhances the Smart Wearable Experience

The Gear S offers a beautiful curved design combined with 3G connectivity on the wrist

Seoul, Korea – [August 28, 2014] – Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. today unveiled the Samsung Gear S, the next generation smart wearable device that expands the smartphone experience to the wrist. The new Samsung Gear S delivers an up-to-date smart wearable experience with 3G connectivity and wearable optimized features to meet the evolving needs of consumers.

“Samsung is leading this exciting and rapidly developing wearable category through progressive innovation,” said JK Shin, CEO and head of IT & mobile communication at Samsung Electronics. “The Samsung Gear S redefines the idea of the smart wearable and the culture of mobile communication. It will let consumers live a truly connected life anywhere, anytime.”

Designed with an elegant, curved Super AMOLED display and flexible band, the Samsung Gear S fits comfortably on user’s wrist. Through 3G connectivity, the Samsung Gear S offers a new, powerful wearable experience and gives consumers the freedom to live their life on the go.

Industry-Leading Curved Super AMOLED Display

The Samsung Gear S features a 2-inch curved Super AMOLED display, providing a richer view with a beautiful and easy-to-use user interface. It allows users to read messages and notifications at a single glance with features such as conversation view and condensed font. The Samsung Gear S’s chic, curved design fits comfortably around the contours of the wrist, while its customizable screen options and changeable straps empower users to express their own taste and style.

Truly Connected Experience

The Samsung Gear S extends its communication capabilities to include 3G as well as Bluetooth and WiFi connectivity, allowing users to stay informed with seamless notifications from social networks, calendars and applications even when away from their phone. It lets users to instantly reply to incoming messages using the onscreen keyboard, or utilize enhanced S voice functionality to ensure tasks can be completed immediately. Finally, with the Samsung Gear S, people can seamlessly make and receive calls directly from their wrist, or get calls forwarded from their smartphones.

The Samsung Gear S allows consumers to control how they want to connect, switching easily between 3G and Bluetooth connections, and automatically synchronizing information when paired to a smartphone.

Extended Features & Applications

The Samsung Gear S provides easy access to relevant information through essential widgets and combined notification boards. Its powerful features include turn-by-turn pedestrian navigation provided by HERE, a 24-hour news and views service from The Financial Times ‘fastFT’, works together with advanced-reading technology from Spritz, and the ability to see and respond to important social notifications instantly with Facebook. Together, these features allow users to be live and actionable while on the go.

The Samsung Gear S is also a perfect health and fitness companion with more enhanced multi-sensors, built-in GPS, and robust S Health features. In addition, applications such as Nike+ Running allow users to track their runs and stay motivated while on the move, without their smartphone.

Also announced today with the Samsung Gear S is the new Samsung Gear Circle. When paired with a smartphone, users can easily receive calls, listen to music, and make voice commands in style through a Bluetooth connection. It features a magnetic lock which clasps around the user’s neck when not in use, as well as a vibrate function to signal incoming calls and notifications.

Both the Samsung Gear S and the Gear Circle will be available in global markets in phases through Samsung’s retail channels, e-commerce websites and via carriers beginning October.
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post #36 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post

[image]

1) Just imagine how long it would probably last and how much smaller it would be with the Cellular and WiFi, and what seems like a very powerful processor for its size.

2) Note the IP67 rating. That means it has been certified to work without issue for at least 30 minutes under 1 meter of water.

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post #37 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mazda 3s View Post

The LG G Watch R looks great IMHO. The Samsung one though, VOMIT!

 

That was the same as my first reaction to them both.

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post #38 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

It's vapourware until it materializes as something solid. That means an actual demo, actual specs, and a price point. Saying "This will be available in Q4" is as much a legitimate a factual claim at this point as me saying, "I will invent a perpetual motion machine that will be available in Q4."
I guess it's how you define vaporware. To me vaporware is something like the Microsoft Courier or Samsung phones with 3-sided displays. This device is going to be announced at IFA. When the Moto Almost 360 was first revealed all we saw were renders but I don't remember it being called vaporware.
post #39 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post

I guess it's how you define vaporware. To me vaporware is something like the Microsoft Courier or Samsung phones with 3-sided displays. This device is going to be announced at IFA. When the Moto Almost 360 was first revealed all we saw were renders but I don't remember it being called vaporware.

1) I certainly called it vapourware and questioned their ability to launch in the time they stated and with a round display.

2) It is vapourware because what they teased us with back in March is not the product they shipped. Back in March the display was a full circle — no flat tyre design — hence my comment about it actually materializing in some way that can be demoed.


Edited by SolipsismX - 8/27/14 at 11:39pm

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post #40 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Samsung on Wednesday also announced a new smartwatch called the Gear S, which features... two days of battery life.

 

What?  TWO DAYS?  Hell, I can barely keep my iPhone charged, no way no how am I going to be charging other devices too. My kindle goes for weeks without a charge, and it still annoys me.  My conventional watch lasts a year on a battery, and even THAT is annoying.  This 2-day charge thing is going to be a GearS-KILLER.  Apple need not do anything.

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