Samsung Unveils Line of Gear 2 Smart Watches Featuring ‘Tizen’ Mobile Operating System

Samsung today unveiled its new line of Gear 2 smart watches, which follows the release of its Galaxy Gear smart watch last year. Like its predecessor, the flagship Gear 2 features a 1.63-inch touchscreen, 4GB of internal storage, 512MB of RAM, and mobile speakers, but also now contains a built-in IR blaster and a camera that has been moved from the wristband to the front of the device. Meanwhile, the cheaper Gear 2 Neo is lighter than its higher-end counterpart, and does not feature a camera.

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Samsung’s Gear 2 Neo (left) and Gear 2 (right) smart watches

Both watches are running Samsung’s new Tizen mobile platform, which was developed in collaboration with Intel as well as multiple telecommunications companies. Samsung says that users can expect an “enriched application ecosystem” as well as compatibility with over a dozen Samsung Galaxy smartphones at launch.

The Gear 2 is said to include a 300 mAh battery that provides anywhere from 2-3 days of typical usage, as well as a heart rate sensor and pedometer for fitness tracking.

The ability to monitor health-related metrics will reportedly be one of the main features of Apple’s iWatch, which is in development and could be released later this year. Throughout the past year, Apple has hired a number of healthexperts in fields related to health metrics, and also is said to be developing a “Healthbook” app for iOS 8. It was also reported last week that Apple is interested in acquiring health wearable maker Basis, which currently integrates many advanced health-centric technologies into its current products.

Samsung will be releasing the Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo in various colors, with both devices receiving Charcoal Black and Wild Orange options. Additionally, the Gear 2 will be released in a Gold Brown option while the Gear 2 Neo will be offered a Mocha Grey colorway.

The Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo will be available internationally starting April, with pricing to be announced soon. The company is also expected to unveil its flagship Galaxy S5 smartphone at its Unpacked 2014 event during Mobile World Congress 2014 later this week, with recent reports suggesting that the device will feature an integrated fingerprint sensor.

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