It’s no secret that smartwatch sales have been quite underwhelming and adoption of these wearable devices has not been as fast as most companies would want. Android Wear is an operating system created specifically for this kind of devices and right now many manufacturers have adopted it, so they offer all kinds of design choices and form factors. Samsung, on the other hand, adopted its own operating system called Tizen and it has been used in their recent smartwatches, including the recently announced Gear S2 lineup. This OS has been optimized for a new way of controlling the new smartwatches including a rotating bezel around the screen as well as the touch screen.
The new lineup includes two versions, the regular Gear S2 and the Gear S2 Classic and there is also a version of the Gear S2 with 3G connectivity. All of them include similar specs including a 1.2-inch circular display with a resolution of 360 x 360 pixels, resulting in the high-density of 302 ppi, plus it uses AMOLED technology, so it provides vibrant colors and extremely deep blacks. They include the same processor, RAM, internal memory and sensors, so the only difference is the design of the hardware and connectivity options.
Past generations of Samsung’s Gear S watches were only compatible with some of the latest Samsung devices, which certainly affected the adoption of these watches. Now, Samsung is changing this aspect and the new Gear S2 watches will be compatible with all Android devices that has Android 4.4 (KitKat) or a more recent version and 1.5 GB of RAM. Still, non-Samsung devices will have some features restricted, in particular, Samsung Pay and compatibility between the APIs might cause some issues with additional features, particularly, the phone dialer was mentioned as one of them. This is great news for those who liked the design of the new watches and the features they offer, but don’t have a recent Samsung phone, as more than 57 percent of Android devices meet the operating system requirement. Let’s remember though, that Android Wear also became compatible with iOS devices, so smartwatches could become way more common in the near future.