Expected to be publicly displayed on September 4th
Quoting two unnamed sources, Bloomberg has confirmed that Samsung’s forthcoming smartwatch will be called the Samsung Galaxy Gear as we suggested here. Interestingly, the Bloomberg report hints that Samsung’s initial foray into ‘wearable technology’ might be more than just an adjunct to a smartphone or a tablet. The device is expected to be able to send/receive voice calls; access the mobile web; and support email. It’s not expected to have a flexible display, although the company is still working on developing a bendable screen.
Bloomberg is positive that the Galaxy Gear will be introduced on September 4th , which is just two days before the IFA consumer electronics show which is held in Berlin, Germany.
Crucially, the timing will enable Samsung to steal the limelight from Apple.
The Californian company is expected six days later to announce a successor to the iPhone 5 although no-one really knows if it will be a full iPhone 6 or an iPhone 5S.
That same event could have been used to reveal Apple’s fabled iWatch which Bloomberg says has a team of 100 engineers currently working on it.
If the Galaxy Gear really is a fully working smartphone – given that it is said to be running the Android mobile OS, then it won’t be the first time Samsung has offered a wristwatch phone.
It famously showed such a device at a CeBit Hanover exhibition but that never made it out of Korea as far as we know. LG also announced a wristwatch phone back in 2009.
However, it was the M300 from SMS Developments which claimed to be the world’s first GSM mobile phone wristwatch back in 2006.
Again that wristwatch phone supposedly went on sale in Australia but GoMo News never ever heard of a consumer buying one.
Canalys has predicted that smartwatches will increase in numbers from 330,000 units shipped in 2012 to five million in 2014.
The dominant supplier of such smartwatches is Sony but the Smartwatch 2 (see here) is a peripheral device – not a smartphone.
The jury is still out as to whether the dominant device in wearable technology will turn out to be worn on the wrist like the Galaxy Gear or as spectacles like Google Glass.