Samsung Galaxy Gear is a timepiece with an agenda


I still wear a watch, for two reasons. Being a person with a terrible internal timeclock, I need something close to tell the passage of time quickly and efficiently, and a wristwatch is more practical than having to get out my phone every 10min (or 30, or 120 sometimes… as I said I’m terrible at realizing how much time has passed). The second reason is a simple fashion statement. And TBH these smartwatches are overkill for the first need, and completely terrible at the second.

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Watches originally migrated out of the pocket and onto the wrist for a reason.




Heh. I did do a LOL. Stop it, I have a terrible cough.

“…utterly insignificant little blue-green planet whose ape-descended life forms are so amazingly primitive that they still think digital watches are a pretty neat idea.”
– from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, by Douglas Adams


It’s horrifying how the bleakest bits of all my favourite SF is now actually true…

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I guess I can see the use of a tablet/watch/earpeice combo since I know people in China and Taiwan who use a tablet and headset already as their only phone, but if I already have a device in a convenient size to carry on my person that does shows notifications on a lock screen… why do I need to spend $300 to push my notifications to a wrist mounted contraption? Does it do anything my phone can’t do on its lock screen?

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It’s about to be superseded by HUDs anyway. Sure, they look goofy now, but they’ll be a behind-the-ear base unit & a contact lens real soon…

I love my watch. Solar powered, compass, time zones. Works all the time in any country with no recharging or concerns about the battery or if there’s even wi-fi. Sneaking a glance during a boring meeting is subtle.

My phone does things, my watch does things. Sometimes they are the same thing, but they each are a specialized tool. Crossing one over into the other isn’t always the best idea.

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The watch I used to wear–the thin Citizen to the right of the Gear in the photo above–was solar-powered too. It had a wonderful simplicity, without even an a.m. or p.m. indicator. (When I went to China in 2007, 12 time zones distant from D.C., I didn’t have to touch it.)

Unfortunately, the damn thing started letting in moisture, the repaired gasket leaked again, and after I’d left it on the nightstand for long enough it ceased functioning.

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Heh. I saw some conceptual drawings of wearable computing in the 90s that had a sort of headset with a little LED attachment that hung in front of one eye and beamed the HUD directly onto the retina, and I was convinced that this would be a thing before we knew it.

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Well, I spent half that to push my notifications to a wrist mounted contraption (a Pebble) because I commonly miss notifications delivered to my phone – the vibrate’s not powerful enough for me to notice more than half the time, and the audio alert is sometimes muted and other times inaudible due to a noisy environment. OTOH, I’ve never missed a notification delivered to the Pebble when it was on my wrist. Sometimes the notifications are important; I don’t like missing them.

As for people who have declared that the wristwatch is dead because they don’t wear one, they shouldn’t wear one.

I do think the Samsung looks to be well wide of the price/utility mark, but hey! to each his or her own.


It struck me as odd that the Pebble would do it open sourced for half the price of the Samsung…

Well, to be fair the Samsung does have a nicer screen. Also way less battery life, vastly more bulk and weight, and to judge from the reviews, inferior functionality.

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I got in on the Agent watch on kickstarter to dip my hand in the smartwatch pool.

It seems to fall in between the Gear and Pebble in features and I am quite interested to see what it can do. I am extra stoked since it runs .Net and, that being the realm of my daily servitude, I’m working on various little apps.

Why, yes. Because pilots and soldiers were cool and got all the chicks.

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