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Leak: Almost a Third of Samsung Galaxy Gear Smartwatches Are Being Returned 365

llebeel writes "Almost a third of Samsung's Galaxy Gear Smartwatches sold are being returned, a leaked document has revealed, which shows that over 30 percent are being returned after sale at Best Buy locations in the US. The higher than expected return rate could be due to that realisation, with customers impulse buying and then realising that the smartwatch isn't everything it's cracked up to be." I'd like to hear from more people with smart watches who are happy with them, to better understand the appeal.
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Leak: Almost a Third of Samsung Galaxy Gear Smartwatches Are Being Returned

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  • by iPaul ( 559200 ) on Tuesday October 29, 2013 @10:13AM (#45268761) Homepage

    I sometimes thought the iWatch rumor was just a plant by Apple to get everyone else in the industry to trip over themselves trying to get the watch out before Apple.

  • Best Buy? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Jamie Wood ( 2916359 ) on Tuesday October 29, 2013 @10:14AM (#45268775)
    Or maybe most of them are just treating Best Buy as "try it out before I order it from Amazon."
  • by Sockatume ( 732728 ) on Tuesday October 29, 2013 @10:26AM (#45268913)

    Wouldn't be the first time they used rumours to their own advantage. It's widely accepted that Apple seeded rumours of an "under-$1000" price point for the original iPad to make its actual $500 price look really, really good. I doubt it's a coincidence that HP and Microsoft's own tablet, the Slate 500, wound up costing $800 later that year. They surely hoped to undercut Apple's rumoured target price when they were doing the original design work.

  • by sl4shd0rk ( 755837 ) on Tuesday October 29, 2013 @10:31AM (#45268969)

    I think people want them, but Samsung tried to get the jump on Apple by pushing a half-baked product. I don't think Apple will nail it either because what people want in a smart watch is out of reach of current technology - the components are just too big. People want a smart watch which is indiscreet. It looks like a regular watch in both design, function and form factor yet magically can interface with your phone in a way which is neither cumbersome or frustrating. I think right now, people would be happy with a watch which simply vibrates when the phone in their pocket or backpack gets a text or phone call. Maybe scrolls an indiscreet caller id on the screen, or marquee of the text. Perhaps does a voice reply to a text message. That would be enough for now instead of trying to fit a phone on your wrist.

  • by The Real Dr. Video ( 1218040 ) on Tuesday October 29, 2013 @10:42AM (#45269111) Homepage
    I have had my Gear (and Galaxy Note 3) for most of the month now. As a business user (I own an IT consulting firm) I find the Gear supremely useful. I don't agree with most of the bad reviews I have read. To dispel some myths: I can go for a few days on a battery charge. I do sleep eventually so slipping it on the charger overnight is no biggie. I am an Exchange user and I get notified of incoming e-mail (and can read a summary) and can see my appointments for the day. Actually taking a call via hands free on the watch works well too, which I was surprised by. I didn't expect that part to be of particular value but I find myself taking calls like that and wearing my Bluetooth earpiece less. This stuff alone is worth the price for me. I think people are expecting this to be some whiz-bang toy and blow sunshine up their butts. This is a productivity tool and delivers it's value in that manner.
  • by xtal ( 49134 ) on Tuesday October 29, 2013 @10:54AM (#45269259)

    Maybe they always were. Functional, but they're jewlery. I have a nice Citizen Ecodrive I'm fond of. It's functional, it's lightweight, it never needs batteries, and it looks nice. It's titanium, with a sapphire face.

    It allows me to casually check time in meetings without being rude; it looks professional; that's important for what I do, less important for others.

    Smartwatches are horrible to look at. They are gaudy and tacky. I am not sure what they say about the wearer, but I am not sure they are part of the image I would want to project. Yes, that type of thing matters to some people. Particularly, I suspect, those who still wear watches.

    What I want is a nice watch like that that maybe has a silent notification capabilty, and perhaps, can pick up some biometric data (pulse, whatever). I would find real value in that - something that my phone can't do, an an alert to get me to check my phone for something interesting or pressing.

    I can see myself getting Google Glasses before a smartwatch.

    Get off my lawn.

  • Pebble seems fine (Score:5, Interesting)

    by T.E.D. ( 34228 ) on Tuesday October 29, 2013 @11:05AM (#45269355)

    My dad (65yo) has a Pebble [], and is pleased as punch with it. He uses it with an iPhone, but they supposedly work with Android, which would include all the (2) devices Samsung's Gear watch works with. So perhaps that's a better alternative for folks looking for a smartwatch.

    And for those making the "look like a dork" cracks, he's a very succesfful lawyer and takes great care with his professional appearance. He did change the band out for a decortive one that looks much better in the circles he hangs out in. You can do that with a Pebble because it uses a standard watch band. The Gear?...nope.

  • by necro81 ( 917438 ) on Tuesday October 29, 2013 @11:08AM (#45269387) Journal
    Makes me wonder if it would be possible to create a tiny electrical generator built into a smartwatch that you "wind" the same way. You might be able to extract, say, 100 milliwatts, meaning your power budget for all-day use would be tens of microwatts. A typical digital watch can get by on about 10 nW; I've used microcontrollers that do useful processing on a few 100 uW. So there might be some realm where this could be possible. I wonder what the average power of the Pebble watch is.

    You can forget about having a touchscreen, though, or a radio with any significant throughput.
  • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus ( 1223518 ) on Tuesday October 29, 2013 @11:10AM (#45269401) Journal
    It doesn't help (for Samsung, at least) that whatever small 'smartwatch' market exists is largely being catered to by outfits who are more realistic about how much you can actually cram into something that fits on the wrist.

    I have absolutely no interest in owning either; but the 'Pebble' outfit managed to get not-totally-ridiculous battery life, along with reasonable size; by being realistic about what they could do: low power transreflective display, limited firmware (with SDK; but not one connected with any broader ecosystem).

    Samsung just goes and bolts the guts of a first/second gen-ish Android phone, minus the cell modem and wifi, to your wrist. Glowy color screen, CPU that's fast enough to gobble battery (but not fast enough to make Samsungified Android run smoothly), integrated perv cam that makes the strap impossible to swap, the thing's a bulbous mess to fit a battery large enough to last a day, and they managed to make it compatible with almost nothing(it is Android; but it's already on the edge of acceptable battery life, has anemic performance, and a small display, so it isn't meaningfully 'compatible' with the broader ecosystem, and its notification display features only work with a small number of applications). Brilliant work.

    I'm not sold on 'smartwatch' as a concept; but even if we accept the goodness of the idea as a foundational assumption, Samsung fucked it up.
  • Re:Maybe (Score:4, Interesting)

    by AmiMoJo ( 196126 ) * <> on Tuesday October 29, 2013 @12:38PM (#45270491) Homepage Journal

    Equally likely is that the Best Buy staff hyped up its capabilities beyond what it could actually do, and then people realized. Years ago when I was working close to retail I saw this a lot in our equivalent shops. Their plan is to make the sale at any cost and then make returning anything a living hell.

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