Samsung Galaxy Gear filing hints at smartwatch ambitions

Patent infringement

Samsung has filed a document with the US Patent and Trademark Office, which suggests it might be planning to launch a smartwatch called the Galaxy Gear.

The filing describes the device as a "wearable digital electronic device in the form of a wristwatch, wrist band or bangle capable of providing access to the internet and for sending and receiving phone calls, electronic mails and messages."

The device could also be used for "the wireless receipt, storage and/or transmission of data and messages and for keeping track of or managing personal information; smartphones; tablet computers; portable computers," the filing states.

A separate filing by the company, this time with the Korean Intellectual Property Office, detailed features of a phone that can be wrapped around the wrist.

"This design is of a body made of flexible displays and elastic materials that can be used while wrapped around a wrist or flattened out," the document said.

More details on the Galaxy Gear may be revealed at the IFA electronics tradeshow next month. Apple is also expected to officially reveal its own smartwatch later this year.

Microsoft is also thought to be developing a smartwatch using a translucent material called Oxynitride Aluminum. The material is said to be three times harder than glass. Its Surface team is developing the device to run a version of Windows 8 and sport a 1.5-inch touchscreen, it has been claimed.

According to technology blog AmongTech, the device will be available in a variety of colours - including blue, red, yellow, black, white and grey - and is expected to sport removable wrist bands.

It is also thought to have 6GB of internal storage and will connect to Microsoft's Skydrive for cloud storage via a 4G LTE connection.

Rene Millman

Rene Millman is a freelance writer and broadcaster who covers cybersecurity, AI, IoT, and the cloud. He also works as a contributing analyst at GigaOm and has previously worked as an analyst for Gartner covering the infrastructure market. He has made numerous television appearances to give his views and expertise on technology trends and companies that affect and shape our lives. You can follow Rene Millman on Twitter.