Samsung Gear Watch (1st Gen)

Gear in Charging Cradle

Summary:  The Samsung Galaxy Gear (1st Generation), was the first smartphone integrated smart watch to achieve high levels of market awareness.  Using Bluetooth to connect to a Samsung Galaxy smartphone, this watch allows for users to perform minor productivity and communications tasks directly on their wrist.  By increasing the accessibility of smartphone features and placing them on the wrist, Samsung attempted to improve the pervalence of this technology.  Complete with a camera, pedometer, and support for unique app integrations with Evernote and MyFitnessPal, the Galaxy Gear offered users the ability to perform unique tasks with only the watch on their wrists.

Intended Market:  Users who are heavily invested in the Samsung ecosystem, or who would like to have the ability to capture notes for Evernote and/or calorie intake through MyFitnessPal using the built-in camera.  Users who wish to have the ability to take and place calls using their watch, and who already own a recent Samsung Galaxy smartphone.  Now that this device has been discontinued, it’s price has stabilized, but due to the presence of certain features that have been removed in subsequent versions (e.g. camera, MyFitnessPal, Evernote), the price will not be going down for these continually more rare units.

Sub-optimal market:  Those persons who would prefer to use a device that integrates with Microsoft or Apple services and devices would be better served by the Microsoft Band or the Apple Watch.  Those persons who prefer to have a device that integrates with non-Samsung Android devices would find Android Wear watches (e.g. Moto 360 and the LG G Watch R), to be more appealing.  Users who desire that their watch have the ability to operate completely independently of their smartphone would be better served by evaluating the Samsung Gear S, which has its own 4G network connectivity and thus does not need a phone for much of its features.

Caveats:  This watch was reliable during the first 200 days of our review, however, after being recharged a number of times on the charging cradle, the snap cradle’s connections started to exhibit issues charging the watch.  Eventually, around day 250, the watch could not be charged using the cradle.  Since the cradle is the only method to charge the watch (which uses a proprietary pin connector for charging), it was impossible to continue using the watch after the final charge was exhausted.  As such, potential buyers need to be aware of the possible fragility of the connection mechanism for device charging with this model.

Approximate Retail Price:  $200

Purchase Link:  To purchase our specific review unit, please see this eBay Auction:  To Be Posted.  Note, if the auction is unavailable, our review unit has already been purchased.

Please note that the proceeding quick summary was a NetWise Life Quick Review, and was not intended to be as detailed or thorough as our standard reviews.  With this review, we intended to provide a quick synopsis of the device’s target market, and a few unique advantages.  It was not intended to be an exhaustive review.  

Gear in Charging Cradle

Samsung Galaxy Gear Smartwatch in Charging Cradle

Fragile Charging Connectors

Possibly Fragile Charging Connectors

Camera on Wrist Strap

Camera Placed on Wrist Strap

Microphone on Wrist Strap

Microphone placed on wrist strap

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