Samsung Galaxy Gear to get better notifications, improved battery life after update

by: Shawn IngramNovember 26, 2013

samsung galaxy gear aa 16

This week, Samsung will push an update to the U.S. variant of the Galaxy Gear that adds better third-party notification support and increases battery life.

After the update to the Samsung Galaxy Gear users will be able to receive full notifications from third-party apps directly on their wrist. That means, for example, that Gmail will finally display message previews on the Galaxy Gear, making it easy to see if an email is worth reading right away. When the Galaxy Gear first shipped, apps like Gmail, Hangouts, Facebook Messenger, or any other non-Samsung app, could only display an icon on the smartwatch. The lack of full notifications was a major knock against the Galaxy Gear, and caused many to question the device’s usefulness.

With full notification support the Galaxy Gear can potentially compete with other smartwatches such as the Pebble and the Sony Smartwatch 2.

The Galaxy Gear update will also improve some of the basic features of the smartwatch. Samsung claims the update will improve the Smart Relay feature of the Galaxy Gear, which lets users open tasks on their phone from their smartwatch. Users will also see an improvement to the lift-and-pause gesture that turns on the clock after the update.

European users who received the update to the Galaxy Gear report increased battery life, though Samsung makes no claim to improving battery life with the update.

The Samsung Galaxy Gear smartwatch currently only works with the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 and some Galaxy S4 devices, but will soon work with more Samsung devices. As Samsung updates its devices to Android 4.3 Jelly Bean it will add support for the $299 smartwatch.

The question is: will anybody actually want the Galaxy Gear after the update? Or are they waiting for a better competitor to come along?

  • ProudN3GgOwner

    Already have this amazing device, this is just the icing on the cake. The note 3 and galaxy gear brutality destroys anything on the market right now. People just have to realize what the gear is actually used for and how to use it; instead of bashing it all the time. Honestly both the note 3 and gear are the best thing since sliced bread. Keep it up Sammy! P.s. I love how all my long time iPhone buddies secretly made the switch to the note 3 or s4, after always hating on Sammy (no pun intended). Cheers

    • james

      Not quite, sony smart watch 2 can see full notifications and reply to the notification. After the firmware of samsung gear you would only view preview of the notifications. I have samsung galaxy note 3 and works beautifully with sony smart watch 2.

  • mehrhusain

    I have been waiting for this update since about 10 days when I heard the UK variant got it. I don’t know if it will make people buy it but those who have already bought it will be happier!

    • N3GgOwner

      You can say that again!

    • samsparkin


  • Mark Washington

    I’m waiting until April or May

  • guest

    I’m still waiting for GN2 4.3 update… can’t wait to buy it. I tried it out at the T-Mobile store the other day. I didn’t notice any lag that some tech sites said.

  • Jobe

    Good cuz i’ve just got android 4.3 for my s4 from T-Mobile.

  • Jaun Lombard

    I really want this…but not at the price…