Samsung's Galaxy Gear smartwatch is subject to many unhappy returns

The watch is selling to consumers, but it isn't staying with them

Well, no wonder we haven't seen too many people sporting the Galaxy Gear since its debut. People keep returning them.

Geek.com claims to have a leaked document from Best Buy to its employees that expresses some concern over the marginally high return rate of the Galaxy Gear smartwatches.

The statement seems to suggest that while employees have been successful in upselling the Galaxy Gear alongside sales of the Galaxy Note III, the smartwatches don't have much staying power at their new homes. Samsung has apparently discovered that about 30 percent of the Galaxy Gear watches are returned and is asking Best Buy employees to help shed some light on why.

The document also shows that Samsung is planning to release the software update that will allow its other Galaxy devices--the Note 2, Galaxy S3, Galaxy S4, and Galaxy S4 Active, specifically--to sync up with the smartwatch. The dates vary by carrier, however, and they won't all roll out at the same time.

Work in progress

It's not exactly hard to see why consumers may be turned off by the smartwatch. It's a mostly proprietary device that only works with Samsung's flagship products--though for now it's limited to the Note 3.

And the Galaxy Gear is still a work in progress. It's bulky for most wrists, and its current available features aren't much to write home about. That doesn't necessarily mean that smartwatches are dead on arrival--it could just mean that Samsung's particular incarnation isn't the kind of device that consumers are looking for.

Knowing Samsung, it'll probably give it another go next year with a different model but, until then, it might be a wise idea to stifle shipments until the company gets a better lay of the land for the watch.

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Florence Ion

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