Tech review: Samsung Gear 2 Neo

Rachael Power
Small Business Editor
Sift Media
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Smartwatches are the new tech 'best friend'; a helpful wrist-dwelling reminder of how many steps, emails and notifications occur throughout the day.

But how do you know which one to go for? 

Firstly, this is usually governed by your smartphone of preference. iPhone users go for the Apple Watch, Samsung for the Samsung watches, and so on. 

But it's not even that simple. Other questions that then pop up are: Which colour, size, shape, price-range and functionality do I need?

The owner of a Samsung phone, BusinessZone editor Rachael Power took the sensible option and went for the lower cost, go-with-everything black Samsung Gear 2 Neo

Here's how she's finding it for both work and pleasure. 

Samsung Gear 2 Neo 

Price: £169 - 200 

Colours: Black, orange and grey 

Where to buy: Amazon, Tesco 

Features: 55g, pedometer, heart rate monitor, standalone music player, voice call and memos, WatchON Remote and charging cradle

The Samsung Gear 2 Neo is a pleasure to wear. As someone who doesn't wear watches, I found myself constantly clicking it on every morning and watching the screen light up brightly as it connected with my phone.

The watch itself is light, at 55g. It adjusts to fit your wrist and its watch face is customisable with pre-loaded and downloadable themes. The battery lasts up to three days, even with prolonged use.  

Walking to work, I use the pedometer. It connets to my phone via Bluetooth so as long as it's within range of that, pings notifications to the watch whenever I get an email, text, WhatsApp or Tweet. There is an ability to turn all or some notifications off according to preference. 

The notifications mean that whenever my wrist vibrates, I quickly scroll down the touchscreen and see who has called, texted or otherwise. I can delete these or store them up for later. 

At work, apps such as Speech2List means I can use the voice command on my watch to generate to-do lists without even having to touch it and Nokia's HERE app gives me quite a slick map app for when I'm out and about. BudgIt for £1.20 helps me keep track of expenses. 

At home, I use the watch primarily for running and fitness with apps such as Strava or even the watch's own health monitor keeping track of my running steps and pace. 

The 'You've reached your goal!' notification I receive daily keeps me motivated too.

There's a lot you can do with these watches and for £160 upwards, they're pretty reasonable - or, you can go for its more expensive brother with a camera, the Gear 2. The most important thing about smartwatches is that I believe they're not a replacement for a phone, tablet or otherwise but merely a very slick and handy accompaniment which means you don't have to crack your phone out at the dinner table. 

What smartwatches and/or apps have you tried out? Comment below to let us know.


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