Samsung are the leading company when it comes to smartwatch technology.
The Gear S2 is their sixth smartwatch in the span of two years, starting back in September 2013 with the Galaxy Gear, which originally ran a modified version of Android. Yes, Android, not Android Wear! Android Wear devices did not ship until July 2014, after being demonstrated at Google I/O in June 2014.
Here is the full line-up. I have bought every one except the original Galaxy Gear:
- Samsung Galaxy Gear (Android, later Tizen) – September 2013
- Samsung Gear 2 and Samsung Gear 2 Neo (Tizen) – April 2014
- Samsung Gear Live (Android Wear) – June 2014
- Samsung Gear S (Tizen) – November 2014
- Samsung Gear S2 (Tizen) – October 2015
With the sole exception of the Gear Live, all of these devices have run on Tizen, and with the Gear S2, I feel that Samsung have really nailed both the form-factor and the functionality. This is really a watch to be proud of. I was not unhappy with the look at both the Gear 2 and Gear S at the time, but putting them side-by-side with the Gear S2, there is no comparison. It looks fabulous.
The Gear S2 even blows away the Apple Watch for appearance. Look at this ugly square box next to the Gear S2!
My Gear S2 arrived direct from Korea last night (via an eBay reseller).
I had pre-ordered a Gear S2 Classic from Best Buy Canada, which was expected on October 16th but is now delayed until October 30th. I see that the Gear S2 is now available in store in various locations.
The charging stand is really neat. All the previous devices had awkward adaptors which clipped to the underside of the watches. Now we have a lovely-looking magnetic charger.
For myself as a developer one of the key changes with the Gear S2 is that Samsung have finally opened up the native API so that it is possible to write C/C++ applications using EFL, in additional to HTML5 applications which have been available from the very start. The lack of native support was the death-knell for my WearableC64 project, way back at the start of my Gear adventure. Maybe that can come back from the dead?
I will put together some videos with the Gear S2 in the near future.
Happy Halloween 🙂