The Gear S2 uses round for its design, down to the interface. It's built to be round. And its really impressive rotating bezel is part of that magic. Instead of the Apple Watch's digital crown, a side-mounted button-slash-wheel, the Gear S2 lets you spin around the bezel that surrounds the watch face, rotating different interfaces into action. Suddenly the watch face slides away, and you see your fitness status. You can set the time by rotating. r dial up an app from a wheel of app icons. The rotating bezel, in some instances, just replicates what you can already do on the touchscreen. Other times, it feels like a revelation, hearkening back to the genius clickwheel on the original iPods. It's the best watch idea in smartwatches next to Apple's digital crown, and it feels good, too. Subtle clicks give a sense of motion and the raised metal dial also protects the inset Gorilla Glass-covered display.
Samsung had a smartwatch before Android Wear or Apple Watch even existed -- and it was a mess, Then there were five more in just 14 months, during which Samsung vacillated between Google's Android iphone screen protector glass warranty Wear platform and its own Tizen operating system, But this Gear S2 is a total rewrite of the whole idea, It's a ground-up rethinking, And that's pretty rare in an industry where companies tend to dig in and perfect, Imagine if Apple Watch and Android Wear met in the middle, and that's a little how the Gear S2 feels..
And yet, amazingly, the Gear S2 manages to stand out, despite also being a round watch. And that's partly because of its looks. The white watch I tried looks clean and futuristic, like a Swatch married with a prop from "Minority Report". It catches people's eyes; and, to my surprise, people want to try it on. They say, "Cool watch, what is that?" even when I'm wearing an Apple Watch on the other wrist. The steel body isn't too thick. The rubberized white bands hug my wrist well. It's comfy (there's another sized band in the box in case you have different wrists). And it looks really good. The watch face is about as large as the 42mm new Moto 360 (1.2 inches, 360x360 pixels), and the body is nearly the size of the 42mm Apple Watch. It's not too big at all. It's perfect for me. The problem with the S2 is that watch bands are proprietary and they clip in and out using a button release on the back.
There are a few other Gear S2 options to choose from: Samsung's step-up Gear S2 Classic uses regular watch iphone screen protector glass warranty bands and has a slightly more compact ceramic body, but costs a bit more at $350 (AU$599, £350), There's also a thicker-bodied 3G version coming in November to the US on AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile, which adds standalone functions and built-in GPS using its own 3G cellular connection for around $350 (some carriers may offer different pricing), The Gear S2 doesn't do as much as the crazy feature-rich previous Galaxy Gear and Gear 2 watches did on paper, There isn't a camera and you can't make phone calls via speakerphone anymore (some will regret this), It's more like Android Wear: get messages; look at apps; track your fitness; listen to music stored on internal storage (4GB) with a paired Bluetooth wireless headset; and respond to messages or trigger voice-activated actions using a built-in microphone, The watch vibrates but there's no speaker..
The Gear S2 has a lot of built-in watch faces with about 13 styles, many of which can be customized into several more versions. Soon it begins to feel like their are dozens of options. There are also specialized watch faces you can download that add extra features (I'll get to those in a bit), and they all look great on the Gear S2's vivid OLED screen (in bright daylight you'd better dial up the brightness). To get to other functions, you rotate the bezel: fitness, weather, calendar, music remote, heart-rate tracking, and a news spin into view, ready to help. These act like mini-apps; like Glances on the Apple Watch, you can tap on them and open the app lurking underneath.