Samsung Gear 2 review: much improved, but that doesn't mean you should buy it
The Gear 2 is generally a solid improvement over the original, with a nicer design and longer battery life. Even so, it doesn't perform well enough to fully justify the $300 asking price.
- Longer battery life
- New heart rate monitor and IR blaster
- Improved design
- Very few apps
- Some software features feel superficial
2013 was the year of the smartwatch. In promise, anyway -- maybe not delivery. Of the many, many different, colorful and unusual timepieces that would populate our blogroll, it was perhaps Samsung's Galaxy Gear that made the most headlines. Why? Partly because it was a new product from one of technology's biggest players, and partly because it was just so bad. Poor battery life, an unpopular design and limited apps meant that the $300 accessory never had a chance of catching on. But, resilient as ever, Samsung is having another crack at it. In fact, it's having another three cracks at it with the release of the Gear 2, Gear 2 Neo and Gear Fit smartwatches. The big question this time around: Is the second-gen Gear any better than its predecessor? Spoiler alert: Yes, it is. But enough that you might actually want one? That question is a little more complex.