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Monday, 24 February 2014 14:01

Samsung hits two more Gears Featured

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Samsung's Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo Samsung's Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo Supplied

Samsung has surprised the tech world at Barcelona's Mobile World Conference, announcing two follow-ups to the maligned Galaxy Gear smartwatch.

The Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo are Samsung's sequels to last year's Galaxy Gear smartwatch, and they are the company's first devices to run Tizen - a Linux-based operating system designed especially for small devices. 

Samsung's original Galaxy Gear, which ran Android, was a critical and commercial flop, and was described as being daggy and clunky.

The Korean tech giant has moved to make amends.

Samsung's Gear 2 now incorporates its camera directly into the watch instead of the strap, and boasts a 2 megapixel camera that can record high-definition video. The device's microphone has also been moved away from the clasp and on to the watch itself.

The Gear 2 Neo is basically the same device as the Gear 2 but with no camera, bringing the weight down to  just 55g.

The Gear 2 has a boosted dual core 1.0GHz processor, and both models bost improved fitness and health tracking, as well as the ability to play music via Bluetooth headphones without connecting to a smartphone or tablet.

The watches also feature built-in IR sensors allowing you to use your Gear 2 as a remote for a TV or set-top box... Especially in pubs or bars.

“Offering extended connectivity features, stylish customisation options and a robust application network, we have enhanced everything that people love about the original Galaxy Gear to create a second generation of wearable devices that offer unparalleled smart freedom,” said Simon Stanford, vice president of IT & mobile for Samsung Electronics UK & Ireland.

Samsung now claims the battery life for the Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo will deliver 2-3 days of "typical usage" and 6 days of "low usage".

Three colours will be available at launch — Charcoal Black, Gold Brown and Wild Orange for the Gear 2 and Charcoal Black, Mocha Grey and Wild Orange for the Gear 2 Neo.

No pricing details were announced but Samsung says the products will be available in April.

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