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Samsung Galaxy Gear S: Why So Much Negativity?

The Gear S is a big chunk of future potential, even if it's of
limited capability right now.
Since smartphones arrived how often have you thought it would be convenient to have one on your wrist? Not even once?

We've craved a personal communicator since the days of Star Trek - and the smartphone has filled this need nicely, but a watch has always been seen as the ultimate expression of this desire. Samsung have slowly been working towards the realisation of this dream as it added communications technology to a whole host of products.

The Gear S is a brave step forward by a company that people claim can't innovate. If you consider how much has been crammed into the Gear S though, you have to acknowledge the design and engineering skills that allowed such a device to get to market; as well as the business level bravery that will see it arrive on the shelves.

It's the first true example of the deconstruction of the smartphone that Bluetooth has been promising for nearly a decade, and which Bluetooth LE finally makes possible. The phone on the wrist, the headset around the neck, a large screen PDA-like device which can act as a headset but be left behind when inconvenient. All of those things are made possible by the concept of the Gear S.

That doesn't mean that it will be perfect, or even very good. Battery life is going to be a problem,  as will charging. We're used to putting our phones on charge every night, so this won't be an issue in itself. However the effort of removing a smart watch and putting it into a charging dock each night is going to take some selling to the market. As a result I'm expecting the Gear S to be a glorious failure.

As a pathfinder for a new market though, it's as good as it needs to be.

Think back twenty-plus years, to the arrival of the Newton. It was cumbersome, slow, feature poor and functioned inconsistently by today's standards. Yet the Newton begat all of the PDA and Smartphone goodness that followed.

The Galaxy Gear S is a similar point for the smartphone watch and for that it should be applauded. In years to come when the smart watch phone is a thing we all wear we should remember the Gear S as the sentinel it really is.


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