Samsung’s Gear S2 is the latest in a long family of smartwatch devices from the manufacturer, covering Android (both Android Wear and versions of Android prior to Wear) and Tizen operating systems. The Gear S2 is an elegantly designed timepiece with broadly similar specifications to a contemporary Android Wear smartwatch, a useful rotating front bezel, but running on Samsung’s Tizen software, which the company says is lightweight compared with Android Wear and so should help the device perform better and squeeze more runtime from a single charge. However, as with almost all devices, whilst the original software version is fine, over time this is perfected by the manufacture: Samsung have released a software update for the Gear S2 smartwatches. Samsung’s accompanying notes explain that the update brings about it several new features plus the ubiquitous “improves performance,” which every software update seems to claim. There are also a number of bug fixes for the device, too, which appear to be primarily centred around device stability.
Amongst the new features, Samsung have added the World Clock, News Briefing and ESPN applications. Customers will find new Mendini watch faces, a new search function for looking up contacts, plus revisions to the screen time out settings. There’s an alert when the Bluetooth connection between the Gear S2 and a partner Android device is disconnected, which could be handy if you have a habit of leaving your smartwatch behind. Another new feature is the ability to add emojis via the keyboard and an unread indicator on the watch face, which is a little red dot and appears when there are notifications waiting for the user. For the sports fans, the ESPN application allows you to check the scores of favorite teams on the watch face, which is a nifty feature (but could potentially ruin your day if you are going to watch the game later and don’t want a spoiler!). It’s not clear if Samsung have enabled support for Tizen OS smartphones with this update.
To download the update, make sure you have the latest version of the Samsung Gear Manager application on your Android device and it should detect the version (referenced as R32XXU2BOKK and weighing in at a shade under 90 MB). Meanwhile, we’ve included a gallery of some of the new changes below.