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Samsung Galaxy Gear update switches out Android for Tizen

Also wipes all of your data
Fri May 30 2014, 15:58
Samsung Galaxy Gear home page

SMARTWATCH MAKER Samsung has rolled out an update to the original Galaxy Gear smartwatch that switches its Android mobile operating system in favour of Tizen.

That's according to Sammobile, which reported on Friday that Samsung has started distributing an update to the Galaxy Gear that replaces Android with its own in-house Tizen mobile operating system.

It is not yet clear whether Samsung's debut smartwatch will now be referred to purely as the Samsung Gear, with the "Galaxy" branding only appearing on the firm's Android devices. We have asked Samsung for more information.

While we have yet to see the Tizen mobile operating system in action on the Samsung smartwatch, Sammobile reports that visually, it does not look much different, so users might not even notice the switch to Tizen.

However, it does add some features presently limited to Samsung's second generation Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo smartwatches. These include a standalone music player that allows you to store tracks on the Galaxy Gear itself, customizable shortcuts for tap input, voice commands for the camera and improved battery life.

It's not all good news, however, as Sammobile notes that the update will wipe all of your data from the smartwatch. However, users reportedly will be given a warning before it begins, advising that this data is backed up.

Third party apps will no longer work on the smartwatch, either, unless developers promptly port these to Tizen.

At present, the update to Tizen - which bumps the Samsung Galaxy Gear software to version 2.2.0 - is only available to download manually via Samsung Kies. The report noted that it might be made available over-the-air (OTA) at a later date, but this remains to be seen. µ


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