David Pogue reviews Samsung’s Galaxy Gear stupidwatch: A human-interface train wreck

“Apple’s iWatch is only a rumor. But Samsung’s Galaxy Gear watch is here now,” David Pogue writes for The New York Times. “But it won’t be adorning the wrists of the masses any time soon.”

“The Gear looks and feels fine on your wrist. It’s not waterproof, but Samsung says it can withstand little splashes. You charge its battery by clamping it into a tiny USB charger — every night,” Pogue writes. “If you’d showed this to someone in 1980, they would have fallen down and worshiped you as a god. But just throwing a bunch of trees into a pit doesn’t make it a log cabin. And Samsung, sooner or later, will learn that it can’t build a coherent device just by throwing features at it.”

“The Gear is a human-interface train wreck. All of it. The software design, user guide, English translations and design consistency,” Pogue writes. “The relationship between the device the watch is linked to and the watch is never the same twice. You wind up chasing the installation, login and setup for each new feature all over Androidland, sometimes in endless loops of infuriating screens.”

Pogue writes, “Nobody will buy this watch, and nobody should. But there’s something here under all the rubble. Sometimes the Gear can be liberating; sometimes it makes possible tasks that you can’t do while you’re holding a smartphone. We just need somebody to find the right balance of labor between the watch and its companion device — to figure out what a smartwatch should and shouldn’t be. Once somebody nails that formula, the age of genuinely useful smartwatches will be upon us.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Gee, wonder who that “somebody” will be? 😉

Related articles:
The Verge reviews Samsung’s Galaxy Gear stupidwatch: Orwellian, unintuitive, oversized, and overpriced – October 2, 2013
Jean-Louis Gassée: I hope Tim Cook had fun goading Samsung to make their Galaxy stupidwatch – September 9, 2013
Stupidwatch: Why Samsung’s Galaxy Gear is a flop – September 5, 2013
Samsung Galaxy Gear watch looks rushed, misses the mark – September 4, 2013
The Galaxy Gear stupidwatch: Without Apple to copy, Samsung is clueless – September 4, 2013
Samsung announces ‘Galaxy Gear’ watch accessory for Galaxy Android devices – September 4, 2013

47 Comments

      1. Really? Man you fanbois are soooo deluded. Apple have been ripping you guys off. This site seems to do nothing than employ a lot of name-calling. How about Apple get back to concentrating on innovation like they used to instead of spending all their effort on suing people.

    1. So in other words, they’ll accomplish second place on their very own, or simply steal second place given no other choice.

      Either way, Wall Street will somehow punish Apple for that too.

        1. So IOS7 is completely Apple innovation is it? Hey guys, well done, you added the ability to enable and disable wifi, bluetooth etc from the swipe menu…been on Android for years, how is that innovation? I’m fully aware that wasn’t the only added feature, but shows my point that Samsung are not the only ones who copy others features.

          1. Where did Apple get the Command-Tab feature in OS X? From Microsoft Windows.

            IOW: We already know that legally available technology and techniques are adopted and shared by everyone. It’s tech that’s either up for grabs or is deliberately licensed as open source. Apple is involved with over 300 open source projects.

            What’s different about Apple is that it does not STEAL. Apple is not a CRIMINAL. Apple’s primary goal is to ENABLE THE USER.

            What’s bad about Samsung is that they STEAL. Samsung are proven CRIMINALS. Samsung’s primary goal is NOT to enable the user. Samsung’s goal is to MAKE MONEY RIPPING OFF OTHERS be it other developers or customers. That makes Samsung a PARASITE.

            And parasites are bad. M’K? 😛

            IOW: The world would be a lot better off without Samsung and their sick, destructive ilk. What the world needs are a lot more Apples.

    2. As did other companies with MP3 players and smartphones. The difference is Apple brings a product that is truly useful and changes how people organize their daily lives. That will be the case when the iWatch comes out. Apple is probably laughing the leaf off its logo at Samsung’s Gear Garbage.

      1. I wonder. It was obvious that Jobs wanted a better mp3 with every fiber of his soul. This drove the development of the iPod. Mp3 players were already hot sellers, a proven market. I’m not sure there is the same proof that so-called “wearable computing” is going to be big, or that anyone at Apple has a clear vision of what that should be. I hope to be pleasantly surprised some day, but unlike portable music players that have been around since the first transistor radios, I don’t feel like I’m missing anything. I’ve got frickin’ computer in my pocket right now!

        1. Google Glass (which qualifies as an “anything”) is bizarre, and I have no plans to get one, still, it shows that the future will likely be partly wearable (and/or – given advances yet to come but barreling toward us – implantable and/or eventually even organic).

          E.g., privacy and involuntary recording issues (and others) aside, imagine the functionality of G. Glass in a contact lens…. ….there would be buyers for sure….

  1. Will be interesting to see if Apple skips over this and goes straight to the TV stuff. I don’t know if I want to go back to wearing watches again. But we’ll see if/when it comes out, maybe I’ll change my mind.

    1. I wear a watch all the time, (snigger), and I wouldn’t be without it, because it does the thing it was designed to do perfectly; tells me the time at that moment, at a glance lasting perhaps a second. I don’t have to drag a large, bulky object out of my pocket, make sure it’s the right way round, and right way up, then press a button to wake it up, a series of actions that take perhaps twenty times as long.
      The wristwatch was invented during the early part of last century, for troops fighting in the trenches, who needed to know the time quickly, a fob-watch was useless for this.
      Now we seem to have gone back nearly a hundred years, only we’re using a pocket computer to do the one thing it’s not ideally suited for, and a wristwatch is.
      Unless you’re the sort of terminally sad human being who has to have their phone in their hand at all times, to show everyone how cool, and connected to all that’s cool, they are.
      Well, I have news for you; you’re about as cool as someone wearing a VW badge around their neck on a thick chain.

      1. I too like to wear a watch. I like the Swiss Army watch I currently wear. Very much looking forward to an Apple made and designed watch. I was watching a show today about the top 10 sniper rifles used by the military. Their number one pick for the best sniper rifle was used in conjunction with a clumsy hand held targeting computer. I can see a sniper using something like it with a smart watch. Especially if he’s shooting solo without a targeter. I can see all sorts of applications where a smart watch could be used in a battle situation. I hope Apple does come out with a watch. You know they won’t do it until it’s perfect, designed nice, intuitive, useful, and easy to use.

        1. The military is a small but lucrative market. I hope Apple never supports the military in any way. War is not a viable solution to the world’s problems. Education alone will unleash the potential of mankind.

          1. I totally agree. But until that wonderful day, I want our sons and daughters to have the best tools in the world to bring that reality. Ironic that such a peaceful person like Steve Jobs helped create such an effective tool for war. Oppenheimer felt the same way about the atomic bomb.

          2. A pleasant do-gooder though but not reality. As long as there are demented religious groups like the Muslim Extremists, and governments turned bad like Germany with Hitler did in the past, there must be wars to attempt to get rid of these scabs on the Earth. You can’t make peace with promises and nice talk with demented groups who don’t respect agreements, treaties, or anything else the sane world uses to keep peace. Sadly they only understand overwhelming force before they give up their destructive missions. I’ll watch while you head over there and “educate” the Jihadists. America educated the bomb boys in Boston with public assistance money, opportunities and college funding, and you can see how much good that did. Their extreme religious beliefs supersede any gifts, education and promises of a better, peaceful life away from a war torn country overseas.

    1. Won’t even matter in 5 years when they’ll be selling off whatever patents dregs they hold after the lawsuits and real innovating roll their refrigerator doors over.

  2. I’ve been using the square iPod for 5 years as a watch and music player and love it
    All that I would want is an alert on phone call, text message , reminder…Just an alert.. Nothing more
    When in a meeting, I can tell which phone calls to take or return, without stopping the mtg digging my phone out, unlocking it, simply to find out who called
    And don’t listen to Wall Street

    1. That is basically what this watch does and more. You can see who is calling and quickly reply back via message or voice chat. Plus the pedometer and other apps are very cool.

      When I go home I put my note 3 somewhere in the house and I don’t worry about it until I leave the house. My watch can alert me if I need to pick my big ol brick up and I love it.

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