Skip to main content

Samsung Planning Big Change for Next Gear Watch (Report)

We currently know next to nothing about Samsung's Gear S4 smart watch. But a new, unexpected piece of information has come to light.

Samsung's G3 Frontier. Credit: Tom's Guide

(Image credit: Samsung's G3 Frontier. Credit: Tom's Guide )

Historically, Samsung's smart watches have run the company's proprietary operating system, Tizen. But trusted Samsung leaker Ice Universe claims that the upcoming Gear S4 will instead be equipped with Google's Wear OS, formerly known as Android Wear.

Interestingly, this tweet cuts against previous leaks from VentureBeat reporter Evan Blass, who also has a good track record when it comes to wearble leaks. In May, Blass claimed to spot Samsung employees were wearing Gear watches running Wear OS, but later clarified that the models were one-offs made by Google.

That said, Samsung may have liked the look of its Google-seeded smartwatch and changed its plans. The company could also be planning to release a Wear OS and a Tizen variant of the Gear S4. It released two variants of the Gear S3, a classic and a more workout/outdoors-oriented version.

Ice Universe also claims that the upcoming watch will ditch the Gear branding for the slightly sexier Galaxy Watch. A new operating system could be the driving force behind the name change. 

There's no official date for this mysterious watch's announcement yet, but the most likely candidates are the Galaxy Note 9 launch event on Aug. 9, or the IFA trade show 2018 on Aug. 31. (Last year's IFA saw the debut of the Gear Sport watch.) We may see the Wear OS variant at these events, or even later if two variants are on their way.

Monica Chin is a writer at The Verge, covering computers. Previously, she was a staff writer for Tom's Guide, covering artificial intelligence and the internet of things. You can usually find her at poetry slams, attempting to exercise, or yelling at people on Twitter.