Images purportedly showing a prototype of the soon-to-land Samsung Galaxy Gear have leaked online, ahead of the device’s launch tomorrow.
Sourced by VentureBeat, the work-in-progress smartwatch appears to blend industrial design aesthetics with the, um, practical, unshowy looks of Garmin’s sportswatches and packs a whopping three-inch screen that has seen it termed unappealingly bulky in some quarters.
But while it’s indisputably not much of a looker, it may yet emerge that what we’re looking at is unrecognisable from the finished product. That's certainly been the case with Samsung Galaxy smartphone prototypes, with the square-looking test models bearing little resemblance to the curved kits that eventually emerged into the spotlight at launch.
Even if it is the final edition of the tech-augmented timepiece, you might reasonably argue that the Galaxy Gear’s bulk is excusable due to the sheer weight of features Samsung has packed in.
On board you’ll find everything from a four-megapixel camera, which is secreted in the strap, to speakers and a Wi-Fi radio, as well as pre-loaded, adapted versions of Android apps and a web browser.
As you might expect given the burgeoning market for GPS-enabled sportswatches (CF: Nike’s FuelBand) and run-tracking apps, Samsung has reportedly placed its S-Health fitness-monitoring application front and centre. The Galaxy Gear also supports S Voice commands, which you’ll presumably be issuing breathlessly and weakly midway through your nine-mile run.
What the Galaxy Gear won’t offer, though, is the option to make and take calls. Rather it's designed to be paired with smartphones over Bluetooth to enable users to access key features (such as email) remotely.
The smartwatch, which is set for its grand unveiling at the IFA tech expo in Berlin, purportedly plays nicest with Galaxy handsets, but can be teamed with any Android phone.