Samsung's Gear S4 may run Wear OS and track blood pressure

Samsung is going big on health
Samsung Gear S4 will run Wear OS

Samsung's Gear S4 is around the corner. We've seen a steady stream of details leaking out over the past couple months, but now more has come to light.

The information comes from leaker Ice universe, who says the Gear S4 - which is likely to be called the Galaxy Watch - will run on Google's Wear OS. The leaker also reports that the Gear S4 will be able to track blood pressure, sport a 470mAh battery, a new UX interaction and have a PLP package.

Essential reading: What to expect from Gear S4

Reliable leaker Evan Blass had previously reported that he'd heard Samsung employees were wearing Gear watches running Wear OS rather than Samsung's own Tizen. Later, Blass tweeted that those smartwatches were made by Google and seeded to Samsung employees (basically, there was nothing to see here - move along).

It would certainly be a surprise to see Samsung ditch its own operating system for its flagship wearable, but it seems to be a subject that's more difficult to avoid. If the Gear S4 is to be renamed the Galaxy Watch, Wear OS would bring it to some nice parity alongside the Android-powered Galaxy phones.

Elsewhere, Ice universe says the Galaxy Watch will be able to track blood pressure. Samsung does have a patent that uses light technology to track blood pressure. That patent was referring to a device called the Gear X, which looked like Samsung's older Gear watches. Those were likely a placeholder name and design, however.

The 470mAh battery would be a welcome upgrade over the Gear S3's 380mAh battery. One thing that might help enable that is the new PLP (panel level package), a chip manufacturing process that results in smaller chips, which opens up the possibility of a smaller device or more space for a bigger battery.

Samsung is holding an event on 9 August to announce the Galaxy Note 9. It's likely the company also reveals its next big smartwatch at that event as well, which means we won't have to wait long to see all these Gear S4 rumors confirmed (or not).

Samsung's Gear S4 may run Wear OS and track blood pressure

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  • yogibimbi·

    It needs to have a similar waterproofness rating to the Apple Watch (or Nixon Mission or Casio G-String), though... Oh, and LTE, of course. If not, it will be again the usual story of Wear OS: too little, too late. But if it does have all these things plus the Gear S3's rotating bezel: nerd-gasm! I might have found a worthy successor for my Mission. Unless, that is, Nixon comes around and puts LTE on the Mission first. But, by the looks of it, I would say Nixon (like almost everybody else who tried to give Wear OS a chance) got burned and are reluctant to put more resources into an upgrade. Plus, Samsung could license out their bezel...
    If the Apple Watch would not require me to buy into the iPhone ecosystem, I would already have one and be done with all this unfulfilled longing (which is bad, so my Vipassana instructor tells me ;-) or, in other words: the Apple Watch and Wear OS are currently obstructing my path to Nirvana...).