TORONTO – Samsung has officially unveiled it’s highly-anticipated smartwatch, dubbed ‘Galaxy Gear’, alongside the latest generation of its smartphone and tablet devices.
The tech giant unveiled Galaxy Gear, the Galaxy Note 3 smartphone and the Galaxy Note 10.1 tablet during an event in Berlin, Germany on Wednesday.
Samsung says the Gear can act as an extension to a smartphone by discreetly alerting users to incoming messages and calls on its display screen, which measures 1.63 inches diagonally.
Users can even make calls, secret agent-style without getting out their phone.
The Gear also sports a basic camera and works with popular social media and fitness apps such as Twitter and RunKeeper.
The Android-powered device starts shipping in most countries Sept. 25 starting at $299.
Samsung’s Executive Vice President of Mobile Lee Young-hee confirmed the tech giant would unveil the smartwatch in an interview with The Korea Times last week.
The event comes just a week before rival Apple is expected to unveil the latest generation of iPhones. On Tuesday, Apple sent out invitations for a Sept. 10 media event at the company’s Cupertino, California headquarters.
Though it has also been rumoured that Apple has been working on a smartwatch, the event is said to be focused solely around iPhone.
Despite the anticipation of new devices, some might be tuning in to Samsung’s event to see if the company does a repeat of its Galaxy S4 event, which raised some eyebrows.
The event started off with a fairly traditional keynote, but things got unusual about 17 minutes into the presentation when the tech conference turned into a Broadway show – different features of the Galaxy S4 were introduced by characters, including a tap-dancing child, a lost backpacker and a group of bridesmaids drinking with the bride-to-be.
The majority of the criticism was due in part to the bachelorette segment of the show, which some deemed sexist.
Samsung’s UNPACKED 2013 event starts at 1 p.m. ET.
– With files from The Associated Press
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