Samsung Gear S to Launch November 7; Pricing Will Vary
The smartwatch market is growing at a fast clip, but not many options provide a standalone cellular connection. That’s what sets the Samsung Gear S apart from competing wrist-friendly wearables, and we now have a confirmed U.S. launch date for the device: November 7. And I wish I could say that’s going to be consistent across all carriers; unfortunately, it isn’t. T-Mobile is the outcast in this case, opting to begin sales of the Samsung Gear S on November 9.
Pricing won’t be all that consistent, either, as each carrier has opted to approach the Gear S a bit differently. According to PhoneDog, Sprint will retail the watch for $384. T-Mobile will charge $349.92. Verizon will sell it for $349.99. And AT&T isn’t putting out any sort of full price for the watch, instead stating that the Gear S will sell for $199 on a two-year contract. For what it’s worth, Sprint and T-Mobile will both offer the watch through payment plans, as well.
Those who simply want to go for a run or a bike ride without lugging a phone along will find the Samsung Gear S a breath of fresh air. I honestly don’t know why more watches aren’t packing in the cellular radio, especially in more fitness-focused options. Sure, it may not be a great idea to ask consumers to pay for another data plan, but with many on shared data plans already, and with the small amount of data a smartwatch would likely consume, would it be that big a deal?
We’ll have to see how the market reacts to the Samsung Gear S — especially when it comes to the prospect of being locked into a two-year deal with the device, which AT&T is asking customers to do. I’m not sure the smartwatch is a device that warrants that kind of commitment just yet, but as I stated earlier, not many are packing on-board cellular radios. This is sort of a new thing, and carriers will have to feel the situation out.
What do you think? Will you consider the Samsung Gear S, or are you interested in other options?