The Samsung Galaxy Gear smartwatch may be designed as a device that you pair with an Android phone to act as a sort of remote control and display. But it actually has the guts of a tiny Android smartphone… so it should come as no surprise that you can get real Android apps to run on the Galaxy Gear.
Doing that is a pretty geeky enterprise at the moment. Most apps aren’t designed for use on a 1.6 inch screen, and you’ll need to use ADB to load the apps. But theoretically the ability to run any third party app could make the Galaxy Gear a lot more useful.
Unfortunately the watch doesn’t have WiFi, so you can’t use the internet, which makes many apps less than useful.
Early reviewers weren’t particularly impressed with the out-of-box user experience. But Ars Technica’s Ron Amadeo may have just given a lot of hackers/tinkerers a reason to pick up Samsung’s smartwatch.
Here’s a roundup of tech news from around the web.
- Running real Android apps on the Samsung Galaxy Gear
The Galaxy Gear runs Android 4.2.2, has an 800 MHz processor, 512MB of RAM, and a 1.6 inch, 320 x 320 pixel display. It’s more powerful than some early Android phones, so of course it can handle apps, games, and even video players. [Ars Technica]
- Rumor: Windows Phone to support 7-10 inch tablets, run many Windows RT
Microsoft may be preparing to bridge the gap between Windows RT and Windows Phone by making sure apps for one can run on the other, and by supporting Windows Phone devices with screens as large as 10 inches. The update is also alleged to improve multitasking and eliminate the back button. [WinSuperSite]
- Oppo to be first smartphone maker to include a mems|cam camera
Chinese phone maker Oppo is the first company to announce it’ll have a new type of camera that captures multiple images and stores them as a single file, letting you adjust the focus and other fine details even after you’ve snapped a shot. [Droid Life]
- Trillian multi-protocol chat client coming to Linux
It’s not like there’s a shortage of chat apps for Linux, but there’s about to be one more… and it’s kind of a classic. [Trillian]
- Skype for Android gets better voice quality, new tablet UI
Skype says the update puts the conversation view front and center, fixes some bugs, and generally looks and works better. [Skype]
- Apple expands iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c sales to 25+ more countries on Oct 25th
Another day, another 25 countries for Apple’s latest phones. [Apple]
- Rumor: Lenovo could acquire HTC
Color me unconfirmed, but this rumor makes a bit of sense. HTC has been having difficulty holding onto market share (and cash) lately, and an acquisition might be a good way to stay alive… sort of. Meanwhile, Lenovo has been branching out into the phone space, but outside of China the company hasn’t been doing much with phones yet. Acquiring one of the top internation Android phone companies could change that. [AndroidBeat]