This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

High-Tech SmartWatches Won't Come at a Low Price

Stocks in this article: GOOG T VZ TMUS AAPL

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) - If you're thinking about being among the first to own a shiny new super-large Samsung Galaxy Note 3 smartphone and matching Galaxy Gear "smartwatch" get ready to break open more than one piggy bank. These "bleeding edge" devices won't come cheap.

The third-generation Galaxy Note 3 is physically the largest model in Samsung line of Google/Android (GOOG) phones. Galaxy Note phones are so large they've spawned the term "phablet" meaning half phone half tablet. The newest model, introduced this week, has a monster 5.7-inch touchscreen (up from 5.5-inches in last year's Galaxy Note 2), 3 GB of RAM and a 13 megapixel camera. Despite the larger screen and all the new features the GN3 weighs a half ounce less than its predecessor. On paper it looks like quite a device.

Galaxy Gear is Samsung's first Android "smartwatch". The device will have a 1.63-inch AMOLED touchscreen (320 by 320 pixels), 512 MB of RAM, 4 GB of storage and a 1.9 megapixel strap-mounted camera. Upon release the Galaxy Gear will only sync with the Galaxy Note 3 phone or Samsung newly announced Galaxy Tab 10.1 Android tablet.

Reaction to the new smartwatch has been mixed. The Street's Technology Editor Chris Ciaccia got to see the Gear at a New York City event and wasn't impressed at all.

Samsung's Galaxy Gear smartwatch will retail for $299. The new GN3 phone will cost a lot more than that.

AT&T (T) is now asking $299 for the Galaxy Note 3 when you agree to a two-year service contract. If you want the phone and the smartwatch AT&T will package them together for $599 (with that same two-year phone contract). AT&T pre-orders begin today.

According to leaked internal documents, Verizon (VZ) is also going to ask $299 (with the usual two-year contract) or $699 without a service plan. Supposedly, if you buy the $299 smartwatch at the same time you'll receive a $100 discount for the combination. Reported total contract price: $498.

And then there is T-Mobile (TMUS) and its new pricing policy. T-Mobile is asking only $199 up front for the phone plus a monthly payment of $21 for two years. That comes out to a mind-numbing $703 to buy the phone (similar to Verizon's non-contract price). Add the $299 Samsung smartwatch and you have a combined price of more than $1,000.

Watches are now a difficult sell. Today's younger generations prefer not to wear wristwatches - smart or dumb. When they want to know the time they just look at their smartphones. So, even though full-featured portable computing devices are "in" (and laptops are "out") smartwatches could be ignored by the buying public. Samsung chief rival Apple is especially aware of that possibility.

We know that Apple (AAPL) is reportedly about to announce at least one and probably two new iPhones at its California event next Tuesday. Pricing will be critical. Adding revolutionary new features and improving hardware is costly. Apple will have to be careful to keep iPhones affordable.

But it will also be interesting to see whether Apple will announce a smartwatch of its own next week. Rumors of an iWatch have been swirling for years. Now that Samsung first wearable device is out of the bag it might be the right time (before the holiday shopping season) for Apple to show the world what it has been working on too. Or, an Apple might just wait and see how the world reacts before jumping into the smartwatch marketplace.

--Written by Gary Krakow in New York.

>To submit a news tip, send an email to:

Select the service that is right for you!

Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!


DOW 17,804.80 +26.65 0.15%
S&P 500 2,070.65 +9.42 0.46%
NASDAQ 4,765.38 +16.9840 0.36%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs