The trend is that everything is becoming smart, well everything except you. First it was your phone, then the TV (they went widescreen, then it was 3D, now it’s smart,curved with 3D plus a host of other special sounds along the way), bras (the bra knows when you are in love well before you do), glasses, your dog, your cat and now your watch is going to be smart too. It won’t be long now before the machines take over.
This week Samsung announced that consumers can now pre-order their own version of the smart watch, christened the Samsung Gear Live ( G Live). As usual, Zimbabweans and other Africans are not invited to the party. The device will initially be available in only 12 countries which predictably include the U.S.A., France and the UK. You can always crash the party by using a VPN/Hola and ordering using a US or UK forwarding address as we have discussed countless times before.
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- First switch on your VPN and select a US gateway or alternatively you can install the Hola plugin for your browser and choose your desired country: UK/US depending on the forwarding address you intend to use. For what it is worth I would recommend a US gateway and USBox.com.
- Visit the ordering page in Google Play market here if you selected a US gateway or here if you have selected a UK address.
- The US page gives you the option to purchase the LG G watch or the Samsung G watch. The former is available in two colours: black and white while the Samsung G Live is available in black only.
- You can proceed to checkout. The buy in for the G watch is only $229 (way below the lowest Civil servant salary of $293) and $199 for the G Live which compares unfavourably with the street price of $0.50 for other brands of digital watches. But these don’t allow you to check messages on your watch, see the weather forecast or play music on your phone.
- Select your US/UK address for shipping purposes and checkout. Shipments will start on 8 July for the US devices and 7 July for the UK devices. Depending with your Box provider you will receive an email notice once the device arrives at your address.
- Once the device has arrived have your Box provider ship it to you for around $45 for US addresses. ZIMRA will charge you 0.15*(45+229)=$41 duty for the G watch and 0.15*(45+199)=$37 VAT for the G Live.
- In addition to this you will also pay a handling fee to your courier for the import process which is around $50 for DHL and $35 for FedEx depending on their mood.
- Estimated landing price for the G watch if you use DHL is (229+41+45+50)= $365. I encourage you to use FedEx (229+41+45+35)=$350 and save a whole 15 bucks.
- If you opt to buy the G Live instead the landing costs will be (199+37+45+50)=$331 using DHL or (199+37+45+35)= $316 with FedEx. Again you get to save $15 when you use the latter.
- Or if this is too much for you, you can just wait for some guy to do the same thing for you and go and buy it for at least double the price locally. This step is in line with our indigenisation efforts.
If like Sheldon (if you don’t know who he is you go on right ahead and ask your smart phone seeing as it is smarter than you) you are immune to satire you should know that this is what the guide is.
Don’t get me wrong, if you follow the steps outlined above you will actually get the smart watch so don’t try this at home unless that is your intention. And if you are foolish (and rich enough) to go through with the purchase you can find out more about the device here. The folks at SlashGear did a review and they were awed and amazed at this inventive device.
I am not a fan of having watches that are smarter than me so this review is not based on actual usage but on information gleaned on the web about the devices. The problem with smart watches from the beginning has been with the word smart watch itself and what it should mean.
Should it be a phone you get to wear on you wrist or should it be some form accessory like your Bluetooth headset? The folks at Google via their Android Wear OS have opted for the latter path. The Samsung G Live and its counterpart the LG G watch are basically expensive and glorified remote controls for your phone.
They will allow you to receive and reject calls on your phone, schedule appointments, read notifications, play music, check flights ( yeah like you have ever been on a plane or are a frequent flier), check the weather (courtesy of Kutsaga weather station), track your fitness (as if you have anymore weight to lose) and order dinner from the Auntie Betty’s kitchen restaurant near your hood using your voice (assuming Google Now knows what “Sadza and Guru” is and it can understand your accent).
In short the watch allows you to check your WhatsApp messages whilst maintaining eye contact thus appearing more polite.
You will require a phone or tablet running at least Android 4.3 (Jelly Bean) before you can dream of using any of these watches. If you are not “smart enough” to know whether you device is compatible you can always visit g.co/WearCheck on the device in question and you will get your answer. As I have said your device is getting smarter than you.
The LG G watch comes in two colours Black and white, is rated IP6 in terms of dust and water resistance which means you can fall in Lake Kariba and still be able to check your messages (assuming the crocodiles don’t deem it impolite). it has low energy Bluetooth, 4 GB ROM and 512 RAM and 1 day battery power so be sure you have an adapter big enough for all your chargers.
It has a 1.65″ screen and weighs a nifty 65 grams and it comes with an inbuilt compass to make sure you don’t get lost. You can also change the straps provided you are brave enough to order them via the said route above.
The Samsung G Live from Google’s very own godson has almost identical specs but it is lighter at 59 grams plus it throws in a useful heart monitor to help check your BP after making such a stupid buy.
I am not sure but i think these smart devices will eat your data bundles too so you need to make the necessary arrangements.
Image Credit: SlashGear