Samsung is preparing to launch new, luxury models of its flagship smartwatch, and will offer iPhone compatibility later this year.
The announcement came from Samsung VP Alanna Cotton at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show. As with the promised Samsung Pay functionality, it isn’t yet clear when iPhone compatibility will come to the Gear S2; and, as The Verge points out, given the previous examples of Pebble and Android Wear devices, it’s possible the smartwatch will lose some functionality on iOS.
Still, trying to siphon users from its arch-rival, which offers its own high-profile smartwatch but restricts it to the iOS ecosystem, could prove to be a clever tactic on Samsung’s part. It’s also emulating Apple in its new rose gold and platinum models, which will target the luxury end of the smartwatch market just as Apple’s gold smartwatch has.
Of course, it isn’t yet clear if the smartwatch is going to catch fire in the mainstream market, but given the arms race underway between Apple and Samsung, it looks like it should be a prominent device for some time.