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Summary:

Samsung on Wednesday unveiled the Galaxy Gear smartwatch, a Bluetooth companion watch for the Galaxy Note 3 and 10.1.

Galaxy Gear_001_Front_Wild Orange

The Samsung Galaxy Note 3 and Galaxy Note 10.1 are here, but what would they be without a companion smartwatch? In a move we’ve been expecting for about a month now, Samsung on Wednesday also revealed the Galaxy Gear smartwatch, a Bluetooth-enabled, touchscreen watch designed to work with the Galaxy Note 3 and 10.1.

We already had a pretty good idea of what to expect from the Galaxy Gear, and many of those features are now official. For starters, the Gear features a 1.63-inch Super AMOLED touchscreen with 320 x 320 resolution (which works out to a sharp 277 pixels per inch). It also features a 1.9-megapixel strap-mounted camera with a BSI sensor and an auto-focus lens, which is designed to capture low-resolution snapshots and 10-second 720p video clips.

The Galaxy Gear only works with the Galaxy Note 3 and the Galaxy Note 10.1 right now, but Samsung is planning support for the Galaxy S 4 in the near future. The watch is powered by an 800MHz processor and 512MB or RAM, features 4GB of storage, and connects to your Galaxy phone or tablet via Bluetooth 4.0. The 315mAh battery is non-removable, and Samsung claims it should last for up to a day of regular use. The Gear also has a built-in accelerometer and gyroscope.

Those last two features make the watch a good companion for some of the apps it will feature at launch. Samsung already has 70 partners lined up, and the Galaxy Gear will support fitness apps like RunKeeper and MyFitnessPal, along with other, slightly more random apps like Evernote, Line and TripIt. The Gear will also work with features on your device like Find My Device and S Voice.

In addition to third-party apps, the Galaxy Gear can notify you of incoming calls, emails and text messages, showing a preview of the message. If you decide to pick up your device after seeing the notification on your watch, it will automatically have the full content displayed on its screen.

And while the Galaxy Gear does not have a cellular radio of its own, the built-in speaker allows you to place hands-free calls from the watch itself (as long as you’re connected to your smartphone, that is). You can also write messages, set alarms and add entries to your calendar through the watch via S Voice.

The Galaxy Gear will first become available in more than 140 countries beginning September 25. Samsung anticipates it will make its way to the U.S. in October for $299. And to hear more about the decisions that went into designing the Gear and Samsung’s other future wearables, be sure to check out GigaOM’s Mobilize conference in October, where Samsung Design America Head of Studio Dennis Miloseski will be speaking.

  1. Ugly. That Ive guy at apple is laughing his head off about now.

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