Samsung is likely going after Sony's Android-powered SmartWatch 2 this fall.
Last week brought reports that Samsung would upstage Apple's iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C reveal with a few new devices of its own, including what's dubbed as the Samsung Galaxy Gear smartwatch. The device, along with the company's Galaxy Note III, will supposedly be introduced to the public on September 4 at a pre-IFA event, just days before Apple reportedly showcases its new phones on September 10.
The latest rumor is that the Galaxy Note III will ship around week 36 of 2013, whereas the smartwatch will ship around week 40. That puts the Galaxy Gear shipping to consumers around the first half of October and the Galaxy Note III around the back half of September. Samsung will obviously want to launch its new smartphone around the time Apple does the same just to rain on the fruity company's iPhone parade.
Samsung's rumored wearable device will supposedly serve as a companion accessory for Samsung's Galaxy-class phones, and will eventually feature a flexible OLED display in later models (the tech supposedly won't be ready for this release). A patent design registered on May 31 shows a control panel at the bottom of the screen providing touch-based back and menu buttons, a possible power button, speaker and microUSB port. A microphone may be mounted just above the control panel on the right side of the screen. The watch band looks to be stainless steel by default.
It's possible the Galaxy Gear is Samsung's answer to the sleek Android-powered Sony SmartWatch 2 which is slated for a September 9 release. The wearable tech will feature a 1.6 inch Transflective LCD screen with a 220 x 176 resolution, an aluminum body, a silicon or stainless steel wristband, Bluetooth 3.0, a micro USB port for charging, and NFC connectivity. It will be compatible with devices using Android 4.0 "Ice Cream Sandwich" and above.
"Out of the box, pair your SmartWatch 2 with your NFC phone by touching one device on the other," Sony states. "Instant and easy. If the two devices have been out of Bluetooth® range of each other, it is easy to reconnect. One touch is all it takes."
The Samsung reveal is scheduled to occur just days before the start of the IFA electronics convention in Berlin that takes place September 6 to September 11. Sony is also reportedly holding its own pre-IFA event in September as well as showcasing a number of products ranging from HDTVs to laptops, and possibly the company's Sony Lens G and its new flagship phone, the Sony Xperia i1 "Honami." We're betting Sony will use this opportunity to provide a firm ship date for its new smartwatch.