Google showcased the latest version of its Android Wear on the new Samsung Gear Live during the recent 2014 Google I/O conference. According to Gizmodo, this device is the first smartwatch platform that has a chance of integrating with users’ existing apps, offering a much better experience than previous smartwatch releases.

The Design

Gear Live was designed to enable users to show off their personality. Users can choose from 13 different watch faces, with more downloadable faces expected soon. It includes a Super AMOLED display that comes in various designs. The vivid screen is 320 x 320 pixels and has 278 PPI, which makes it a much better looking display than the LG G Watch.

The watch itself has a brushed-metal frame that tapers down nicely into the band, and it has a single physical button and a heart rate sensor on the underside. At the time of launch, it only comes in two color bands: black and wine red.


With a heart rate sensor, accelerometer, gyroscope, digital compass, Bluetooth 4.0, and 4GB of RAM, expect to get more out of Gear Live than previous Android Wear smartwatches.

According to Gizmodo, setup is easy. “You just download the Android Wear app for your phone, pair it via Bluetooth, and you’re off to the races. A little tutorial takes you through how it works, and while you’re messing with that, the watch syncs with your Google account. Strategic bits of this info will then be displayed in Google Now-ish cards on the watch.”

Navigation on the phone is as easy as swiping up, down, left, and right. Up and down swipes let users scroll between different cards, left swipes dive deeper into each card, and right swipes go back or remove a card. It’s that simple. When not in use, the watch dims while displaying the time. A tap, button push, or a raise of user’s wrist wakes up the watch.

The integration with Google Now also means users can control their smartphone from their smartwatch. Voice commands can alert the watch to send text messages, check out last night’s game scores, ask how far away a favorite restaurant is, check how many steps the user has taken in a day, or send an email.

While the Android Wear platform is still in its early stages and doesn’t boast many apps yet, expect to see powerful new apps created by developers looking to push smartwatch capabilities even further.

What do you think of the new Gear Live?

Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

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