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Will Samsung’s smartwatch consign phones to the history dustbin?

What is a smartphone's shelf life in the future - unless you can wear it on your wrist?

This is the question being hinted at by Samsung leaders after exclusively unveiling the heralded Galaxy Gear smartwatch on Wednesday at this week's IFA technology trade show in Berlin.

Described as "something out of sci-fi", it gives users email, texting, phone call and photo-taking facilities - all without touching their mobile.

It includes speakers and microphones, meaning consumers talk into and hear from the gadget on their wrist instead of a handset.

Pranav Mistry, head of Think Tank Team at Samsung Research America, said at the launch, which was live streamed to New York's Times Square: "We have created something incredible.

"You don't need to get your phone out anymore." It is made of stainless steel but is light in weight with a strap packed with what Mistry calls the "technology of the next decade".

Consumers switch it on with a swipe, which unlocks features including apps, contacts, a camera and email. Incoming messages - such as calls, alerts and emails - appear on the smartwatch and can be obtained on the wrist.

Otherwise, "smart relay" technology means the message will automatically load with a linked, bigger gadget, such as a tablet or smartphone.

The watch will hit the shelves from September 25 and will retail at around £190.

About the author  ⁄ Mark Johnson

Founder, Author, contributor, content strategist and content curator for Consumer Checkpoint.

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