StatEasy’s Guide to Technology: Wearable Tech
It’s going to happen, so you better be prepared. Wearable tech has been slowly making its way to consumers for a few years now, but we have a feeling it’s going to pick up in the next year. In this edition of StatEasy’s Guide to Technology, we’ll cover two of the best-known wearables: Samsung’s Galaxy Gear, and Google Glass.
Samsung Galaxy Gear
The Gear is a “smart watch” produced by tech giant Samsung. Released in September of 2013, it currently retails for $299.99.
Luckily, our Marketing intern Nate was kind enough to model his Gear for us!
What Does It Do?
So what exactly does $300 get you? Like most “smart” devices there’s a list of apps that come with the Gear.
- Camera – Surprisingly, it’s 1.9-megapixel camera takes some high quality pictures. Check out this picture Nate took on his Gear. Once a picture is taken in just a couple of seconds the photo or video will be sent right to your phone.
- Phone – Believe it or not, you can use the Gear to make phone calls. We’re told the sound quality isn’t perfect, but for a watch, it does pretty well! To set aside any hesitation about making calls from the Gear, you DO NOT need to hold the watch up to your hear or near your mouth to allow the person to hear you, just simply letting your arm rest by your side is sufficient.
- Notifications – The main advantage of having a smart watch is receiving notifications. Samsung’s Gear lets you read emails, texts, and other notifications right from your wrist instead of pulling out your phone.
- Pedometer – The Gear also functions as a pedometer and works with the S Health apps right on your phone to keep track of the steps you are taking every day.
- Media Controller – From the Gear you can control the music off of your phone. On your Gear you can play/pause the music, turn the volume up or down, or skip forward and backwards between tracks.
In addition to the apps the come with the watch, Gear also allows you to download apps to your watch right from your phone. The list of compatible apps is growing everyday on the Samsung App Store. Some of these compatible apps are Snap Chat, Watch Styler (which lets you create custom watch faces), Evernote, and many more.
Admittedly, we don’t see much use for a smart watch like the Gear in sports, especially given it’s price tag. External reviews seem to agree that while novel, the Gear is not worth the $300 investment.
One of the most anticipated new devices since the iPad, Google Glass is at the forefront of wearable technology.
Google glass is a set of glasses (without traditional lenses unless you purchase them), that puts a mini display in your field of vision. Glass is voice activated, making it easy to use and interact with.
What Does It Do?
The current version of Google Glass, known as the Explorer Edition, was only released to a few thousand individuals (at a $1,500 price point). While the consumer edition set to release sometime next year will have more features (at a much lower price, possibly $250), the Explorer Edition comes with seven functionalities.
The Google Glass website has produced some great videos to showcase what it looks like for people wearing Glass. As you can see from the pictures and videos, the display does not demand a user’s entire field of vision. The display, known as a prism, is said to look like a 25″ screen from 8′ away.
From a sports perspective, apps designed for glass are well positioned to rock some boats. Take Strava for example, or maybe GolfSight. There’s no shortage of creativity and innovation out there to utilize what Glass has to offer.
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