Thursday, 21 November 2013

Samsung Galaxy Gear Review: What can Samsung's Smart Watch?

The mobile industry is currently waiting for the next big boom. After 2007 came with the iPhone, the first serious smartphone on the market for three years and also tablets are on the rise now, many are waiting for the boom of the "wearables".
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In these "wearables", ie smart gadgets like the clothes worn on the body, is for many one of the main sites of the mobile industry in the future. The Samsung Galaxy Gear is Samsung's first Smart Watch and many seemed particularly so early in his eyes, in order to forestall the competition and especially Apple. Whether this was to start early, or whether the Galaxy Gear is expected to meet a SmartWatch ...
The specifications:
  • 800 MHz Exynos 4212
  • 512 MB of RAM
  • 4 GB internal memory
  • Bluetooth 4.0 LE / NFC
  • 1.63 inch SAMOLED display with 320 × 320 pixels
  • 1.9 MP BSI CMOS camera, 720p video
  • Accelerometer / gyro sensor
  • 36.8 x 56.6 x 11.1 mm with 73.8 grams
  • 315 mAh battery / 150 hours standby 
  • 2 microphones, 1 loudspeaker
The battery and charging:
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Generally, the battery of smartwatch is seen as a sticking point. As the Samsung Galaxy Gear presented, was often only 10 hours of talk time sound. I had never problems to come over two full days. Certainly no great shakes, but ok. The only annoying: Loaded is only through a separate charger, a microUSB connector as the Sony SmartWatch 2 sadly lacking in the Galaxy Gear.
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Processing and design:
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The Samsung Galaxy Gear is a Smart Watch and naturally applied as such to the design of a conventional wristwatch. Is surprisingly low, the weight, the Samsung Galaxy Gear weighs 73.6 grams For a watch this size, this is surprisingly little that is realized especially through the use of plastic on the back of the clock and the bracelet. In this version we tested white plastic somehow reminds me of home-sickness tablets, watches from you is simple otherwise wertigeres usual - usually there are at least metal on the back.
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The design is of course always a matter of taste, but the Galaxy Gear is in my opinion an absolutely perfect blend of retro design and high-tech under the hood. Only my inner Monk is whimpering in the corner: Samsung has sunk four screws around the 1.63-inch SAMOLED display. While this makes the device an overall valent appearance, however, the orientation in the delivery seems arbitrary. I had to use a screwdriver turn the screw first so that it suited me.
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The buckle is slightly thicker advised by a built-in speaker, compared with a usual thickness of the closure is still just fine. The size of the adjustment is also easy to master.
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The display and the clock.
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1.63 inches tall, SAMOLED, 320 × 320 pixels - for a clock amazingly well. At night, you will love the display, with popping in the sun you have to either power-hungry outdoor mode switch, or live with a little good readability - unfortunately an automatic brightness control is missing.
It is - unlike the Sony SmartWatch 2 - not permanently active. Either by pressure or by head gesture which can be adjusted in the Gear Manager, you activate the display. With a little practice a good solution. The clock is basically yes, the most important feature of a clock ... and here the Galaxy Gear is always a good thing. Own background colors and with the app "Watch Styler" also own designs (yes, at the xda-developers there is even a template for the clock from Knight Rider!) Make the clock completely customizable. I also like to use the clock during exams, permanently activate the display but can not - by no later than 5 minutes on this off and even that is likely already enough to gnaw the 315 mAh battery.
Camera and phone: gadgets
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Yes, you can make calls with the Galaxy Gear. With two microphones and a loudspeaker in the clock in the buckle possible. Therefore one must then keep the gear either extremely unusual to the ear, or you can play "Knight Rider" and talk with his arm. In theory, that might be cool, but in practice it acts similarly stupid as in soliloquies with Siri or Voice in the south metro, or calling with Bluetooth 20 EUR gloves in winter. I called twice with the gear in the car, it may be convenient for me, otherwise a pure gimmick. The speakers in the buckle might therefore like to give my opinion. That one with the Galaxy Gear can not autonomously phone was criticized in some test reports - it's me care less, even if that were possible, I would not do it. Practically, it is that incoming calls are displayed on the Gear in silent mode - so you miss a call by mistake.
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Also a camera can be found in the Galaxy Gear. It dissolves with 1392 × 1392 pixels is not very bad at, but also has barely functions. The point of the camera in a clock if you already have it have the smartphone to use the clock did not open up to me. The Galaxy Note 3 has a 13 MP camera, 2 MP Gear just short - why should I do to square images of me on the Gear? In addition, one feels when shooting with the gear, as if it had not quite enough for James Bond.For me - so far without useful apps available - a mere gimmick. Perhaps there is something in the future, you would have been happy to give my opinion on the sensor. A side effect as with the Google Glasses is the way that the other person feels constantly monitored, then you put the gear on the camera, this is likely to scratch pretty quickly.
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The software:
I had actually typed this review ready. The headline should be "Galaxy Gear: The Glass clock with the Google problem" loud. Simply because the Galaxy Gear for a long time could not deal. A few notifications from Samsung services, time and Runtastic Pro, that was all. For a few days there is an update and this is my picture of the Galaxy Gear quite changed. Meanwhile, it is also possible to select notifications for other apps. Thus, about WhatsApp messages are displayed (if they contain any images) or emails will be flown at about Gmail on the clock.Sure, would have to answer the phone brought back from his pocket - with the notifications you can often save it but because you can already see on the clock, whether a reply worthwhile.
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In everyday life one learns the Galaxy Gear for notifications love. If you have the phone on silent mode, incoming calls to the clock WhatsApp, Twitter and Gmail are displayed, too - the Notification LED on the Galaxy Note 3 you no longer need actually. Whoever wants to can open WhatsApp and co on the gear and can then be displayed on the smartphone. Nice to have.
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Otherwise, the operation is simple: A few simple gestures to help with navigation. This is so amazingly comfortable, although only one physical button on the Galaxy Gear is available. To 1.63 inches so you can even call a task manager (if the clock is on a need to be seen) and quickly adjust the display brightness and volume. Also, the first connecting is simple: In the back of the charger is integrated NFC, holding man's Galaxy Note Galaxy 3 or S4 now with the back to the back of the Galaxy Gear, the two will automatically connect via Bluetooth 4.0. The only drawback: The Galaxy S III and Galaxy Note II are not compatible - in time for Christmas but should be able to have the update to Android 4.3, the Galaxy also hereby Gear is then supported.
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In the Samsung Apps is a separate category for "Galaxy Gear apps" available. In addition to "Watch Styler" I found here Runtastic particularly important. I had always Runtastic per show on the score 3, with the extension of the gear can then be the distance traveled and the speed on the clock. Extremely handy if the Galaxy Note is stored in a 3 arm pocket while running.
tl, dr: The bottom, top or flop?
Two weeks here was to find a pretty clear "flop". Not enough functions I simply gave no value for a 300 euro gadget. After the last update I had to throw overboard the Review: WhatsApp, Gmail, phone calls, twitter - and I've actually everything on the gear, see what's worth it. Clean.The battery lasts two days with heavy use - five would be better, but it can still hold out amazingly well. The number with the charger sucks. Nevertheless, it remains a v1, a first version of Samsung's interpretation of a SmartWatch. I have my phone with clock can not and I also prefer photos with the smartphone. I would possibly be even a remote shutter release on the App Gear for my NX300 (including manually adjustable aperture and shutter speed) give me would be enough as photo function - a separate sensor is simply too big or too bad. If Samsung camera and speaker removed and it then installs a bigger battery and maybe incorporating a wertigeres bracelet, the gear at a lower price than almost 300 euros would be more interesting for me. V1 as I find the gear ok, but now I burn the certainly sometime appearing successor, who will hopefully make some better. Let's see if I'm weak in the Galaxy Gear before Christmas, when the price falls a little - after the last update I'm going to miss my tester anyway.

Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition: Unboxing and first impressions : Samsammy

I had not done this year on the IFA in Berlin and therefore no opportunity to look at the Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 edition detail.
After the first Galaxy Note was 10.1 at the MWC 2012 and sometime in 2012 then came onto the market, many users were waiting for a new edition with a good display as well as the Google Nexus 10 with its 2560 × 1600 pixels. The Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 edition only has a little more identifiable than just this resolution with a 10.1-inch LCD.
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This is a Snapdragon SoC 800 with 2.26 GHz (in the LTE version), LPDDR3 3GB RAM, 16 GB of internal memory (expandable, but it could calm the 32GB of its Galaxy Note 3) and Android 4.3. Visually, it is the big brother of the Galaxy Note 3, however, reveals that the reverse is not rubberized. I do not know if it's just me, but in my sample are on the back depending on the light to find minimal bumps that through the leather-profile (smooth, polycarbonate) are enhanced:
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The back so not like me, unfortunately, but the rest of the Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 makes a really good impression. The display is sharp and the viewing angle than the Nexus 10, to the system with the Snapdragon 800 is even better, absolutely liquid. The surface is almost entirely that of the Galaxy Note 3 and so is the App Drawer to find only one page of apps from home since it was cleaned up using folders. Here is the video of the unboxing and first impressions after a few pictures: