Loving My New Samsung Galaxy Gear!

Well, I just picked up a new watch the other day.

It is a Samsung Galaxy Gear watch, and it works with my phone. While I have had it for only two days, I love it. It has already changed how I now travel and do business. In addition to the watch, I also picked up a Bluetooth Jabra overhead hands-free device for my phone. These two devices have significantly improved my travel experience; traveling has just become a little more fun.

Samsung Galaxy Gear Watch

I have not worn a watch since June 1999 when I left the Air Force. I decided upon this watch because it was more than a watch; it would help me stay connected and allow me to explore informal learning in a new direction. Let me tell you about some of the capabilities of my new watch. It comes with a number of applications but you can also add some.

  • Time – First of all, my new watch allows me to see the time. If you are going to have a watch, this should be at the heart of it.  This watch comes with 9 different watch faces; everything from analog to dual time zones to time and weather. With a flick of my wrist, I have the capabilities of my watch at my fingertips.
  • Weather – In addition to time, I can also receive the local weather with a two-day forecast. I can set the period of time when the weather updates; the weather will update to the town you are in. I watched the weather change both on my watch and out my window from Cody where I picked up the watch to Powell, back to Cody, through Riverton, Rawlins, and finally to Laramie as I made my journey back home.
  • Notifications – It is possible to be notified of new messages with this watch. I have the ability to decide what messages are important so I can turn on notifications for alarms, calendar events, email, Gmail, Evernote reminders, Facebook posts, Google+ posts, Hangouts, incoming calls, text messages, missed calls, twitter, and weather updates. Right now, I am experimenting with these notifications. I need to find the right balance. With most notifications, you can read them from the watch. For others, I push them to my phone to read.
  • Making and receiving calls – When I make or receive calls I feel like Dick Tracy. All I can say is that the call quality both sending and receiving is great. It is a lot more convenient than pulling out my phone especially when driving. I simply touch my watch and I am in a call. Also on my watch, I have a list of all my contacts. I simply scroll through the list and initiate a call.
  • Calendar – My watch also has my schedule available to me.  It pulls in events from all my calendars and presents the title of the event. If I want to look at the details of an event, I would have to go to my phone.
  • Camera – The watch has a camera that takes good quality phones. These phones automatically go to my Google+ account.
  • Other apps and features – This watch has these additional applications and features: find my device (let’s me track down my phone if I misplace it), pedometer, voice recorder, stopwatch, and timer. I also have the ability to add additional applications. So far, I have added one —Evernote! I am sure you could have guessed.
  • Evernote – One of the important applications I have loaded on my watch was Evernote. The Evernote application allows me to do four things: capture photos, record audio notes, see recent notes, and use checklists. So far, I have used the camera and audio recorder and they work great. Once I capture the image or recording, it is immediately available on my phone, and shortly afterwards, it is available to all of my Evernote applications.

Jabra Tour Speakerphone

Since I was planning on doing a lot of traveling, and I wanted to travel safely, I picked up a Jabra Tour Speakerphone.

Jabra Tour Speakerphone
Jabra Tour Speakerphone


The Jabra Tour Speakerphone is a Bluetooth device that allows me to connect two Bluetooth capable devices to it. So far, I have only connected my Android phone to it. If a call comes in, it will ring on the speaker, and I can pick up the call with a press of a button. When looking for a hands-free device for my car, I did not want something that I had to wear. This is a wonderful option. If I choose, I can also connect my iPad to the speaker phone to listen to music, Podcasts, or GPS directions. With two devices connected, if I am listening to music and a call comes in, the music will stop so I can take the call. I am very happy with this device.

While traveling, I was able to pick up a call with my watch and have the conversation through the speakerphone. It was a nice integration of technologies. For these three weeks, I am on an extended trip. I just completed my first leg by going to Worland, Powell, Cody, and back to Laramie. I am now ready to travel to Santa Fe, Denver, Scranton, and Washington DC. During the first part of the trip, I was able to dictate most of this blog post to Evernote while enjoying the Wyoming roads. These technologies are allowing me to stay productive while traveling. I am able to stay in touch with the world but safer than I have in the past.

What tools are you using to stay productive while traveling?