Verizon and Samsung officially both go down as two companies that I love
their products but the their service and the the companies and hope another
carrier and tech company emerge and take them down
And of course, since my 14 day trial with T-Mobile ended today, I returned the watch in the absurd hope that VZW will step up and because the Spotify app was not out yet. So, naturally, this just came out: http://www.tizenexperts.com/2016/12/spotify. But, since VZW has not yet given the Gear S2 the update everyone else got a couple of months ago, Spotify is not available for our Gear S2s.
I work for a large company that has a major account with VZW, so I had the question run up the flagpole at VZW. The most definitive word currently from the VZW powers-that-be is that the S3 is in the process of its LTE radio being certified for their network and that it is anticipated that the device will be certified and ready for release sometime "in the middle of the first quarter of 2017".
I would like the S3 to be released before the end of the year, but it sounds like that just will not be happening. Why it will take 2 months for the certification process to complete from whenever the phone was released to VZW's techs, I don't know. I suppose it might even be because VZW wants the focus for the holidays to be on the bigger ticket smartphones (in terms of ongoing service charges) and they do not want to cannibalize the product line for a device that will be largely an add-on to an existing account (unless you want to pay $20/month versus $5/month if they follow T-Mobile's all-you-can-eat wearable pricing model - though I tend to think data at VZW will be shared as with smartphones and tablets on your account).
So...don't get your hopes up for seeing the S3 get released tomorrow by VZW, as the best information says it could be in mid- to late-February. Let's just hope that estimate is not merely aspirational and that they might even be using the under-promise, over-deliver approach and surprise.
I was tempted to run to T-Mobile - I even called them - but since I have my family's phones and tablets at VZW with a company discount, I can wait. Twenty dollars a month for a peripheral/add-on/companion device is a lot of money. Besides, I plan to pair it with my iPhone. I have the widely-leaked "final build" beta of the iOS Gear Manager and for what I want to do with the watch (wear on hiking and biking trips, call Uber, control my home automation, listen to music, and of course make and receive calls), I am seeing that others are having success. Still, perhaps between now and the release, Samsung will release the official non-beta version of the app, perhaps with further refinements despite the current leaked app's alleged final build status. Just don't expect Samsung Pay to be on the iOS Gear Manager. I read the other day that Apple rejected that feature. It's a shame that Apple can't just rely on its innovation to best competitors and has to resort to strong-arm tactics, but I digress....
I hope that helps clarify things for folks. If my sources are wrong and there is a quick release, I'll happily order one. Happy holidays!
Again just crossing my fingers that another company blows samsung away and
another carrier blows verizon way. Two companies that for whatever reason
failed their customers
Although I truly appreciate the information and believe what you say is more than likely accurate, I disagree with your "under- promise" comment. The fact is what has most of us upset on this forum is there had been no communication let alone a "promise" of any kind. You may know a guy who said xyz, but what I would like is for an official, unified statement explaining when the watch will be available. A promise of any king would be great.
A late-February release would see the device having burned-through 25% of its (theoretical) 12 month shelf life. Leaks for any potential successor will certainly be appearing on the Internet by March 1st 2017; we will all be curious regarding the upcoming Galaxy S8 too. Perhaps by late February there would be word as to a possible Moto 360 Gen III. For a watch and a phone!
Motorola has suspended work on another smartwatch, so I don't think you'll
see anything from them soon.
On Tue, Dec 20, 2016 at 8:49 AM, VladTheImpala <email@example.com>
The article cites a lack of "pull" in the market; that, I can actually see with the spotty, stealthy, guerrilla-style launch of Samsung's watch. I read a similar take in another article about a month ago. I have the Moto 360 Gen II which I do still wear when using my LG V20; my Bluetooth Frontier is slaved to my S7 Edge which works well as a combination. The 'sting' of not having an LTE-enabled Frontier is all but completely forgotten by me at this point.
I don't disagree with your comment. It is unacceptable that it takes an inside path to a high-level VZW exec to get a "guesstimation" of when the Gear S3 will be released. Similarly, a statement by the exec along this path can hardly be construed as a public promise of any kind. As I said before, maybe wearables are seen as a future possibility but not worth diverting people's attention from flagship smartphones and expensive data plans for the time being.
Incidentally, speaking of lack of transparency, there are many of my fellow iPhone users who would (and will or have, with a different carrier) jump at the chance to get an S3. I have a thread over on the Samsung community forum about what the S3 will and won't do with an iPhone. The unofficial, "leaked" iOS Gear Manager "final build" beta supposedly hits the high points - enough for me to take the plunge - but there is no indication when the beta will be officially released. I know that Samsung argued - and lost - with Apple about getting Samsung Pay on the iOS Gear Manager, so maybe they have other battles to fight or options to build in before the app goes official. Anyway, I have that app and am just waiting for the watch to pair it with. What frustrates me is that I have heard nothing from Samsung about this official release, so we're left to work with the leaked beta.
With respect to alternatives to the S3, I understand the next gen Moto 360 is in doubt. Perhaps the next iteration of the LG Watch Urbane might offer that alternative, since the Urbane II showed promise, but I am not ready to get my hopes up.
I also am concerned about the fact that a release in late February (or later), runs significantly into the expected lifecycle of the S3. It is frustrating that VZW, even if it is in the name of protecting the user experience on its network or protecting the network itself, will be so late to the party (which may have moved on to the next cool kid's house).
People can debate the value of wearables in their current form or in their future state until the cows come home, but I am already thinking of a future where wearable devices can provide much of the experience that phones do now. Certainly not everything can be replicated in wearables with the current tech, but if I can head off on my bike and get/make calls and listen to music (stored and streaming) through my BT earbud via my watch, hop in my car and have the car's BT sound system take over the speaker function, quickly check news/call an Uber/lock my front door with my phone, that's a pretty good experience for me. I only wish the carriers and the manufacturers would recognize that market.