With the announcement of the Gear S2 watches, the obvious comparisons one of the more successful smartwatches from a company in Cupertino: the Apple Watch. These two definitely represent an interesting side of wearables, especially smartwatches that favor some kind of physical interface other than the touchscreen interface.
First off, let’s take a look at the design language between these two. The Gear S2 is following a circular design all encased in 316L stainless steel with an all-encompassing 1.2-inch Super AMOLED 360x360 display. Material choice on the S2 and S2 Classic range from stainless steel to stainless steel and ceramic with a Corning Gorilla Glass display. That display also has 302ppi. Internally, it houses a dual-core processor, 4GB of storage for apps, half a GB of RAM, and a 250mAh battery.
On the Apple Watch, you see that the design is a rounded off square meant to look like a smartwatch from the gate. The Apple Watch comes in three material flavors: a Sport, which is in aluminum and glass; in Apple Watch, which is 316L stainless steel and Sapphire Crystal; and Watch edition, which is solid gold and Sapphire Crystal. From a material standpoint, the only clear difference is the Apple Watch not including the Sport, is the Sapphire Crystal in different materials which is extremely scratch-resistant.
The Apple Watch has a 1.5-inch or 42mm equivalent display packed with resolution of 312x390. It’s an AMOLED panel and has 326ppi. Inside, there is a single-core S1 processor, 8GB of storage, half a GB of RAM, and a 246mAh battery for the 42mm watch.
The two big differences between the watch is the software and physical interaction of the watch. These two emphasize a physical connection to the watch. The Apple Watch using the digital crown, which is primarily used for scrolling, scaling, and navigating simple menus which is nice to use but it’s not exactly the most natural thing to do. While the Gear S2 uses a different approach of a rotating bezel that surrounds the watch. This allows navigation of the menus to be easier. But the lack of selecting from the bezel is slightly weird. But unlike the digital crown, the bezel feels a heck of a lot more natural to use on a daily basis.
The last difference is the software and compatibility. The S2 can work with Android phones 4.4 and above and runs Tizen. It’s definitely an improved iteration of the software from last generation. But I’ll leave you a link for my impressions video of the Gear S2 if you want to check some more out on Tizen. The Apple Watch runs Watch OS and only works with iPhones, specifically iPhone 5S and above. Watch OS is a different approach to smartwatch operating systems and I’ll definitely link you for our full review as well.
This video definitely deserves a revisit when we get a Gear S2 in house for review but until then, let us know which one you’d go for by leaving us a comment below. Apple Watch or Gear S2?