The Next Big Thing in wearable technology is off to a rocky start, with over 30-percent of customers at Best Buy returning the $299 device. According to internal documentation leaked to Geek, the Korean company is currently surveying the big box retailer’s Samsung Experience staff in an attempt to figure out why consumers are so unhappy with the smart watch. There are many reasons why we think they would, as we said in our Galaxy Gear review. Even the company’s own executives are struggling to find reasons why the Gear is particularly special.
The document reveals that purchases are highest at Best Buy Samsung Experience stores; the same applies for return rates, which is “trending above 30-percent.” It’s unclear how authentic the internal documentation is, but if it’s true, it certainly doesn’t bode well for the wearable device heading into the holiday period. Reviews of the watch so far have been mixed, to say the least. Combine that with a high point of entry and relatively low compatibility, and the recipe isn’t exactly a winner—not yet.
The Galaxy Gear did just gain more support for the Galaxy S4, S III and Note II following a recent Android update. That’s certainly a good start, but until its many other issues are ironed out—battery, limited functionality, speed—the Gear will remain a hugely niche device that many consumers, according to internal numbers, don’t find all that compelling.