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Home / Mint-lounge / Features /  Galaxy Gear launched in India, at `22,990

Samsung on Tuesday said its Galaxy Note 3 tablet and Galaxy Gear smartwatch will be available in India from 25 September. The company launched the devices on 5 September in Berlin.

The Galaxy Note 3 will cost 49,900 and Galaxy Gear, 22,990. Since the Gear currently works only with Note 3 or Galaxy S4 phone, the two devices together will cost 72,890. The company will offer no discounts on buying the two together.

The new Galaxy Note 10.1 tablet, which was mentioned in Berlin without details, will be launched in October, according to Vineet Taneja, Samsung’s country head for mobile and digital imaging, who declined to specify the price, specifications or a date.

The Note 3 is based on the Octa-core chip design, which uses a 1.9GHz quad core processor for CPU-intensive work, and a second quad core processor for other tasks to increase efficiency. In contrast, there’s a Snapdragon-based central processing unit being launched in markets that offer fourth-generation LTE services, such as US and Europe. The latter is capable of recording video with 4K ultra-high definition resolution. Since some new 4K TVs are now coming to India, it could have been an exciting new feature, but Samsung has chosen to go with the former version. “India is still a 3G market, this is what the customers will get the most benefit from," said Taneja.

The sleek Galaxy Gear has a 1.63-inch amoled display, a gyroscope, an accelerometer, and a 1.9MP camera.

Customers will be able to try the Galaxy Gear with a security lock in 100 Samsung showrooms in Delhi, Mumbai and Bangalore from Tuesday till 25 September, the firm said.

The Gear is powered with an 800MHz processor, has 512MB of RAM, and comes with 4GB of storage. It cannot be used without a paired smartphone. Once connected over Bluetooth, the Gear can show notifications such as calls and messages on the watch face. There’s also a facility to answer calls—courtesy of a small microphone and speaker on the watch—while the phone is in the pocket. The watch also has options to use a variety of faces, check the appointments calendar, or use an in-built pedometer to track exercise regimens.

Overall, the high price of the Gear and the Note 3 is not really unexpected, given recent trends in the market, but it is still somewhat disappointing. The Gear is a powerful companion device which could change the experience of using a smartphone. However, the high cost of entry, and the limited device support are causes for concern. Aside from that, a battery life of just 25 hours, coupled with what is still a fairly large watch, could be impediments to widespread adoption.

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