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Samsung’s new Gear Fit 2 has GPS and a hulk display

Activity-tracking wristbands tend to guarantee a lot and broach not utterly as much, though that hasn’t stopped wearable makers from trying. Some of them are starting to fist some-more sensors into a same wristband form factor, anticipating that a combined capabilities will be The Thing that keeps people wearing a band.

Samsung is a latest association to take this approach, with a proclamation of a new Samsung Gear Fit 2 today. The activity tracker is a follow adult to a strange Samsung Gear Fit, expelled in 2014. The new wristband has an updated design, built-in GPS, and a ability to automatically commend certain activities, an increasingly common underline in aptness bands and watches.

Samsung has congested GPS and heart rate sensors into a sub-$200 wristband

The initial conspicuous thing about a new Gear Fit 2 is a size. It’s a some-more stretchable rope than a strange Gear Fit, that felt revengeful on a wrist, though it’s also bigger. This is partly to accommodate a incomparable — Samsung records it’s twice as far-reaching as a before indication — 1.5-inch, super AMOLED display, that was designed with limit prominence in mind. All of a information is displayed plumb on your wrist, that means we don’t have to spin your wrist to perspective a plane display.

In further to tracking examination distances regulating a GPS sensors, a Gear Fit 2 marks a now-standard collection of personal health metrics: steps, sleep, several activities, and heart rate. It includes a daily timeline perspective of your daily activities, and will uncover whole maps of using or cycling routes after you’ve finished your activity, since again, that vast display. And it will uncover a accumulation of notifications from your smartphone.

Samsung is also a second tech association in new days that has partnered with Spotify to emanate a dedicated Spotify app for a new wearable gadget. (Pebble was a other.) So there are 3 options for song listening by a new wristband. You can store adult to 4GB of song locally on a device, use a wristband as a Bluetooth remote control for other song apps on a phone, or play Spotify from your wrist — nonetheless you’ll still need a phone in draw for that, during slightest for now.

Its approaching battery life is improved than we competence design for a wristband with a vast arrangement and GPS. Samsung says it expects a rope to final 3 to 4 days with standard usage, and adult to 5 days prolonged in standby mode.

Gear Fit 2 has a dedicated Spotify app

The Gear Fit 2 costs $179 and will boat before a finish of a year. That’s $20 reduction than a cost of a strange Gear Fit, that retailed for $199, and around a same cost as a Microsoft Band 2, another activity-tracking wristband with built-in GPS. It’s also significantly reduction than a cost of a GPS-equipped Fitbit Surge, that costs $250. we have to give Samsung credit for cramming as many capabilities as it could into a sub-$200 wristband.

However, a Gear Fit 2 has one obstacle that those other aforementioned bands don’t have: it usually works with Android smartphones (4.4 or higher), since Fitbits, Microsoft Band, and even Garmin inclination work with a accumulation of mobile platforms as good as desktop software.

Samsung does contend that a Gear Fit 2 can be used exclusively of a mobile phone, so if we did have an iOS device and we still, for whatever reason, unequivocally wanted to wear a Gear Fit 2, we could. But we can’t see how a stipulations would be value it, deliberation we wouldn’t get “smart” notifications from your phone, and you’d usually be means to demeanour during your examination information directly on a wristband.

So Samsung is pulling an Apple, by introducing a wearable that’s meant to have extended interest though is singular to one height (for now). It’s an proceed that has worked tolerably good for Apple so far; by some estimates a association competence have sole between 10 and 12 million smartwatches in a initial year, and Apple is ranked third on IDC’s list of tip wearables vendors for a initial entertain of 2016. But Samsung is fifth on that same list, claiming only a 3.6 percent share of a worldwide wearables market, and that splinter is mostly comprised of Samsung’s smartwatches, not aptness bands.

Samsung is apparently wagering that a new Gear Fit 2 competence be tech-sexy adequate to assistance a association grow a altogether share in a wearables market. But we have to offer a batch end for now: until we have a possibility to exam it for an extended duration of time, we won’t know for sure.

Photos by Vjeran Pavic