Beyond the Gear 2 and Gear Fit, 5 Smartwatches and Activity Trackers we are really excited about

BY Rita El Khoury

Published 25 Feb 2014

Over the past couple of days, Samsung has announced 3 different smartwatches, including the Gear 2, Gear 2 Neo and Gear Fit. However, all of these Gear-branded wearables will only work with Samsung’s Galaxy devices, leaving every Nexus, HTC, LG, Sony (and other brands) owner in the cold. That’s why we find it hard to get excited about Samsung’s launch and have thus created a list of 5 other wearables that seem more — or differently — promising.

1. Pebble Steel

It’s impossible to mention any wearable device without talking about the Pebble. One would argue that it’s the smartwatch that started it all because despite it not being the first to the market, it was the first to show people’s interest in this category of gadgets. The Pebble Steel brings a lot of what people already loved about the original Pebble and wraps it in a more elegant and refined body. It works with both Android and iOS devices, comes with its own store for installable watch faces and apps, and uses an e-paper LCD screen for increased battery life. However, despite containing many hardware sensors that would benefit it for fitness tracking, its potential there has yet to be fully unlocked, and it currently serves more as a smartwatch than an activity tracker.


Find out more on the Pebble Steel official website.

2. Kreyos Meteor SmartWatch

The Kreyos smartwatch is the first of the four devices on this list that haven’t launched yet. It mixes traditional smartwatch functions — notifications, music playback control, etc — along with a pedometer and other fitness tracking features. Like the Gear Fit, the Kreyos is removable from the watch strap and can be worn inside a lanyard or a clothes clip. It is waterproof, however, instead of being just water-resistant, and includes a built-in microphone and speaker so you can answer calls and use Google Now without having to pull out your phone. The Kreyos should work with Android, iOS and Windows Phone devices, and packs one additional feature that is motion control. You can program specific gestures to manage music playback or perform certain actions.


Find out more on the Kreyos Meteor official website.

3. Razer Nabu Smartband

The Razer Nabu Smartband was announced at CES and is still in the prototype phase, but that doesn’t stop it from being quite promising. It works with both Android and iOS devices and includes social and fitness options, gesture controls, but the one differentiating feature is the presence of two screens on the band. A small one is on the top side and only shows an icon so you can quickly dismiss non-urgent notifications, while the other is on the opposite side — or the inside of your wrist — and displays the details of each notification should you flip your hand to check them.


Find out more on the Razer Nabu official website.

4. Amiigo Fitness Tracker

The Amiigo differs from every other device on this list by being a unique and very advanced fitness tracker. It combines a wrist band and a shoe clip, for accurate 3D tracking and automatic recognition of dozens of activity types. There are no notifications, no screens, and the data can only be viewed after syncing with Android or iOS devices. The Amiigo is however waterproof and capable of tracking swimming. It also includes a built-in heart-rate sensor and works as an all-day activity and sleep monitor.


Find out more on the Amiigo official website.

5. Google’s upcoming rumored Smartwatch

Not much is known about Google’s often rumored smartwatch, aside from the fact that it should be coming sometime this year. That’s enough to put it on our list of wearables we’re excited about because we are almost certain Google will either push the technology beyond what’s available now, or refine the current features to be more user-friendly and helpful. It should also work with almost every Android device available, making it a lot more versatile than Samsung’s Gear line-up.

Which wearable on this list, or elsewhere, are you looking forward to? Is it a Samsung Gear branded one, a Pebble, or one of the lesser known brands? Share your thoughts with us.