The Galaxy Gear rumors are worrisome

Anna Scantlin
Contributing Editor from Kansas City, MO
Published: September 1, 2013

Remember that article that was published earlier this week where I said that wearable tech was starting to sound more appealing? That was before I started seeing the new rumors surrounding the details of Samsung's Galaxy Gear smartwatch. Although it still stands that wearable tech can be extremely useful in certain situations, companies have to realize just what situations such features will be useful for. When it comes to Samsung's Galaxy Gear smartwatch, if the rumors are true, I'm afraid they missed the mark for what could have been a perfect smartwatch by a longshot.

The first thing being the way the smartwatch looks. Earlier today on the news side of PhoneDog, Alex reported about a leak received by VentureBeat who seemed to have gotten their paws on a unit and a promotional video for the Galaxy Gear smartwatch. From what I gather, this is the design that we have to look forward to:

It really depends on how seriously you take leaks. Personally, I take them with a grain of salt. Well, maybe more like with a couple of pinches. It will put an image in my head, and either I hope to see it or I hope not to see it, but I try not to get the idea in my head that this is definitely the end result of the product. In this particular case, I hope the leak is wrong. But with the device being so close to launch, I'm a little more worried than usual that this will actually be very close to what we see revealed on September 4th in Berlin. From a design standpoint, this watch doesn't look that great at all. I mean, it looks exactly like every other smartwatch on the market, except for bigger and clunkier. I was really hoping that Samsung was going to use a flexible display as their smartwatch's main advantage, but it would seem like that may not be the case.

A flexible design, or at least a curved display, would have been perfect for a smartwatch. It allowed a bigger screen, like the one in the leaked image which is said to stretch 3" diagonally, but would comfortably curve around the wrist. The way the photo depicts the screen, it looks like it could get a lot done functionality-wise, but the design of the device looks like it would physically get in the way of things (mostly due to huge bezels). Regular wristwatches can take on a form like this because they're smaller; even smartwatches that have come out thus far haven't played out to be this big. Not to say that they shouldn't, but it really shouldn't with a standard wristwatch design. It needs to be more flexible to work, I think.

The second thing is that the smartwatch still doesn't seem to feature making phone calls directly from the watch, which I would really like to see happen. Monitoring your health and other data with a camera could be seen as a beneficial feature, but let's face it: the only thing that supposed 4-megapixel camera is going to be doing is taking selfies galore. This device is also said to feature social networking apps, which is all fine and dandy except for it doesn't make a whole lot of sense. Social networking is meant to be done on larger screens, like the ones on our smartphones. What doesn't need a huge screen is the ability to make phone calls. Make sure the screen is big enough to display a name and a phone number and we're golden. We don't need to social network on a smartwatch. They just seems like they're overdoing everything. I mean, this is still supposed to be a device that aids us in certain aspects of our smartphones, right?

The only thing I saw that looks to be right was that S Voice is supposed to be implemented, as it should be. If voice activation was going to be good for any sort of device, it would be a device that's too tiny to work with an actual keyboard. Yes, an advanced voice activated personal assistant is actually a good answer to a problem such as this. But so far, that's the only really good thing I'm seeing from this. Other than that, it looks like Samsung took things too far too soon. But again, this is just assuming that the leaks are true.

If the leaks are true, would this really be the start of a smartwatch revolution, or will it just fall into the same pile of smartwatches never to be heard from again, like Sony's? Although I would like to say that if Samsung releases a smartwatch like this, it wouldn't sell, but the truth of the matter is that Samsung is such a big household name now that people would probably still buy it just to support the brand. But I guess we'll have to wait and see in a few days to really find out.

Readers, what are your thoughts on the recent Galaxy Gear rumors? Do you believe them, or are you skeptical? If the rumors prove to be true, would you purchase the new smartwatch? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

Images via VentureBeat, Oh Gizmo