First day with the Samsung Galaxy Gear S

I was browsing Best Buy yesterday and was pondering picking up a Galaxy Gear 2 Neo when I came across the Samsung booth and saw the Galaxy Gear S for the first time. I was immediately in love with the design and screen quality and knew this was the watch I was going to leave the store with.

galaxy gear s

I didn’t know much about the Gear S at all, and was surprised to discover that in a sense it is a completely separate smartphone. What I mean is, the Galaxy Gear S has its own phone number and data connection and can function completely on its own when you’re away from your phone. You can also set up call forwarding, so that if you don’t initially answer a call on your phone it will be redirected to your watch. It may also come in useful in a pinch if your phone dies and you need to send a quick message or make a call.

galaxy gear s menu

There’s a lot I love about the Galaxy Gear S already. I love being able to read my phone’s messages and notifications on my wrist without ever having to reach for my phone. I found this feature appealing while at a casual lunch yesterday. I could just glance down at my watch and read a message without interrupting conversation or looking away for a significant amount of time.

galaxy gear s messages

I also found the on screen keyboard easy enough to use which was surprising. I didn’t expect it to work very well on such a small screen, but it is certainly functional.

galaxy gear s keyboard

I also love how the watch automatically displays the time when you lift your wrist. I know it seems silly, but being able to glance at the time without having to push a button on my phone is quite convenient.

galaxy gear s time

I’ve also enjoyed using some of the apps available for the device.
The weather display:

galaxy gear s weather

 

CNN:
galaxy gear s CNN
galaxy gear s CNN

Calculator:
galaxy gear s calculator

The media control lets you navigate the songs playing on your phone (this will be great while running!):
galaxy gear s media control

The S Health functionality is one of the device’s most appealing features to me. It’ll track your steps, heart rate, calories burned (based off of steps taken / activity), sleep and the UV index when you’re outside.

galaxy gear s health

To use the sleep tracker you have to first tell the device you’re going to sleep and then it’ll begin tracking. It was interesting to see just how restful I was while taking a nap earlier (I was 89% motionless over 4 hours and slept for three and a half hours.
galaxy gear s health sleep

The watch will vibrate and notify you if you’ve been too inactive over an hour long period which can be a nice motivator to get up and move. When this happens it’ll show you how many steps you’ve taken during the day and your progress toward your goal.

The Galaxy Gear S is $199 with a 2 year contract, and does require a data plan. I have AT&T and upon adding the watch to my account I had to switch from the 5GB data pro plan to a 6GB data share plan. As far as I can tell, this actually made my monthly bill cheaper, but I’ll have to wait until I’m billed for the first time to know for sure. I also now qualify for rollover data which is pretty cool!

If you don’t want to be locked in on a contract you can purchase the device for $329.

If you have any questions, feel free to ask them in the comments!

 

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Get healthier with S Health

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One of my favorite apps on my Samsung Galaxy S5 is Samsung’s S Health app. It has driven me to become more active and to be more aware of my daily physical activity and general health. It can track your heartrate, daily walking, running, biking, food intake and more through add on apps you can download.

My favorite feature is the pedometer. It challenges you to take at least 10,000 steps a day in order to meet the widely recommended amount of weekly physical activity. I’ve found that during a night of work I tend to rack up between 5,000 and 6,500 steps on average and I’ve since challenged myself to add an additional 3,000-4,000 steps to my daily routine by going on walks before work, and walking to the store rather than driving. The pedometer made it easy for me to challenge myself to walk more and challenge myself to reach a higher and higher step count every day.

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I love being able to glance at the widget on my home screen to get a quick look at my daily progress.

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I’ve also been using the run tracker within S Health, and it’s functional but I still prefer the Nike + app for running. The diet tracker makes it easy to track what you eat in a day and it’ll help you to hold yourself more accountable for what you eat. Once you see exactly how that snack will affect your calorie total you’ll probably be more likely to swap it for something healthier like a fruit.

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S Health will challenge you to increase your daily activity in order to meet whatever goals you, or the app, set for you. The app is a simple way to become more active and hold yourself accountable for your health.

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