While we eagerly wait for Apple to make an entry in the wearables space with its rumored iWatch smartwatch, Samsung plans to launch yet another smartwatch in the next few months, according to WSJ.
WSJ claims that this time round Samsung plans to launch a smartwatch that will work as a standalone phone.
Samsung launched not one, but two Tizen powered smartwatches — the Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo at the Mobile World Congress in April. The problem with smartwatches that have been launched so far serve as companion devices for the smartphone as they have to be tethered to the smartphone.
Samsung plans to address that according to the WSJ report:
Samsung’s watch-phone will be able to make and receive calls without being tethered to a smartphone, something most smartwatches on the market now can’t do, according to people familiar with the company’s plans. It will also take photos, send email and come with GPS, Bluetooth and a heart monitor, the people said—a suite of features that would make the gadget-toting James Bond proud. (The fictional British spy used a wrist walkie-talkie in the movie For Your Eyes Only).
The report claims Samsung is in talks with carriers in the U.S., South Korea and Europe about the watch-phone, and hopes to unveil the gadget between June and July. The watch-phone is expected to be powered by Samsung’s own Tizen OS, and not Android Wear, which was launched few months back.
Android Beat, our sister website points out that the rumors about Samsung working on a USIM enabled smartwatch started floating around back in April, with the company apparently planning to launch it as the Gear Solo in South Korea. Samsung is also likely to call their watch-phone – Gear Solo as it has filed a trademark for it.
One of the reasons smartwatch manufacturers haven’t included phone capabilities has been due to battery life concerns. It will be interesting to see what kind of battery life Samsung’s watch-phone will offer, as the last thing people want to do is keep charging it every day. It could also hint at what to expect from Apple’s iWatch.