Are Samsung's Gear wearables priced to fit?

The prices have been announced: the Gear 2 is $299, while the Gear 2 Neo and Gear Fit are $199. Now, which one will you buy?

Andrew Hoyle/CNET

You walk into a store. You have $300 in your hand. You can get a Samsung Gear 2 for $299, a Gear 2 Neo for $199, or a Gear Fit for $199.

Do you get: a) the Gear 2? b) the Gear 2 Neo? c) the Gear Fit? d) none of the above?

The Wide World of Wearables has a wide pricing landscape, but when it comes to wristbands it's coming down to dollars. The prices of Samsung's new wearables aren't surprising: the original Galaxy Gear cost $300, and the new version has extra features including a heart rate monitor.

How do these prices play out against other wearables? Let's check our favorite wearables list and see.

Andrew Hoyle/CNET

Watches: Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo fit right in
The newest Pebble watch, the Pebble Steel, is $249: more expensive than the Gear 2 Neo and Gear Fit, but less expensive than the Gear 2. It also has fewer features, lacks embedded fitness tracking, and doesn't have a color screen. The original Pebble is $149. The Gear 2 Neo, at only $50 more, seems like a really good deal.

But, the admittedly cool-looking Gear Fit, which is also basically a watch, is exactly the same price as the Gear 2 Neo. Odd, because the Fit is a more feature-restricted product. You could get the Gear 2 Neo and enjoy everything the Fit offers, plus apps, for the same price.

The Qualcomm Toq debuted at a lofty $349 but has since lowered its price. $299 is acceptable -- and $199 is quite reasonable -- for a smartwatch. We don't know what Google's sexy new Android Wear watches such as the Moto 360 will cost, but they bear watching. For Samsung, it'll have a big impact.

Andrew Hoyle/CNET

Fitness bands: Gear Fit scraping the upper edge
Now what about the Gear Fit? In the fitness-tracker landscape, $199 is a lot. But you could argue, easily, that the Gear Fit has more than any other band we've seen. The $149 Jawbone Up24 and Nike+ FuelBand SE don't have heart-rate monitoring, advanced notifications, or a color touch screen. The $179 Basis Band, a heart-rate-monitoring health watch, is chiefly fitness-focused and lacks the smartwatch extras. But, you can get pedometers, even ones with stationary heart-rate monitors like the Withings Pulse, for $99 -- or even less.

I'd say $199 seems right for the Gear Fit considering all it could possibly do, even if I wish it cost less. But the Gear 2 Neo seems to throw a wrench into the gears, so to speak, of the pricing equation. I'm no longer sure what to get. Obviously, a lot depends on how these devices actually work, and we don't have review units yet. But it looks like Samsung has created a lot of choices...perhaps one too many.

If anything, these prices seem to make the Gear 2 Neo the most attractive item. What do you think?

About the author

Scott Stein is a senior editor covering iOS and laptop reviews, mobile computing, video games, and tech culture. He has previously written for both mainstream and technology enthusiast publications including Wired, Esquire.com, Men's Journal, and Maxim, and regularly appears on TV and radio talking tech trends.

 

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