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A peek into Samsung's refresh of its WatchON and S Health apps confirms a new, flatter design

Posted: , by Chris P.

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A peek into Samsung's refresh of its WatchON and S Health apps confirms a new, flatter design
Last week, we came across screenshots from a new app that is expected to make an appearance with the latest version of Samsung's software, likely loaded on the upcoming Galaxy S5. But apart from offering some new functionality, we couldn't help but notice that the app also opened a new, flatter chapter in Sammy's design language. This same philosophy applies to two other proprietary apps that the folks behind SamMobile got their hands on before release -- WatchON and S Health.

As with Life Times, both WatchON and S Health now follow the latest Android design guide-lines much more closely. It would appear that the rumors of a closer relationship between Google and Samsung will, after all, turn out to be true, for the South Korean company seems to have let go of its typical design approach towards Android. The new apps look sleeker, and just more modern and in tune with the times. Of course, it does remain to be seen whether this new design language will also spread to the overall UI look and feel, though it feels likely. This is great news for those of you who have been on the fence about Samsung -- its TouchWiz skin has, after all, polarized the community. 

So are there any changes other than in the design department, then? According to SamMobile, WatchON remains largely the same, but S Health, on the other hand, has some extra stuff added to it. For one, S Health will now allow you to simultaneously look at your location and operate your music player all from the same screen. Take a look.


source: SamMobile [1], [2]

30 Comments
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posted on 03 Feb 2014, 10:13 2

1. Duketytz (Posts: 494; Member since: 28 Nov 2013)


Why do I get that WP feeling when I see the fonts?

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 10:17 2

2. jedpatrickdatu (Posts: 150; Member since: 24 Jan 2013)


It's not just the fonts. The flatness, the vivid colors, the sharp edges - they all contribute to that WP feel. Windows Phone's design language is the trend everywhere now.

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 11:19 4

7. ihavenoname (Posts: 1426; Member since: 18 Aug 2013)


I'd say that it's more like iOS 7 and Google design, though it's kinda like WP.

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 11:28 10

8. rd_nest (Posts: 770; Member since: 06 Jun 2010)


You think "flat" design *only* belongs to Microsoft, jst like Apple owns rectangles. Is that what you think.

1996 called again:http://cdn.ientry.com/sites/webpronews/pictures/AolWindows8Pic5.jpg

SurfCast US Patent #6,724,403:

http://i.imgur.com/UjIyW.png

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 11:46

11. Liveitup (Posts: 1319; Member since: 07 Jan 2014)


Two problems with your explanation, Surfcast did not patent Flat UI, Surfcast patent relates to a homescreen.

Microsoft has patent a Live Tile based user interface.

http://www.google.com/patents/US7933632

As far as OS design goes its pretty safe to say everyone is following in WP footsteps.

http://patentimages.storage.googleapis.com/US7933632B2/US07933632-20110426-D00000.png

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 12:12 2

15. AliNSiddiqui (Posts: 379; Member since: 19 Sep 2012)


Yes, because nothing says we made it like owning the patent on it!

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 12:28

17. Liveitup (Posts: 1319; Member since: 07 Jan 2014)


Patents are meant to protect what a company feel is theirs from others mimicking it without any consequences, that's why every tech company has patents of some sort.

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 14:03 1

24. rd_nest (Posts: 770; Member since: 06 Jun 2010)


Nope, MS didn't invent 'flat' UI.

Read the date of patent filing.

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 22:06

30. jedpatrickdatu (Posts: 150; Member since: 24 Jan 2013)


Back then, almost every smartphone looked like generic black slabs. Then, Nokia's Lumias were announced, and everyone started making colorful phones. Nokia didn't invent colored smartphones, but they were the ones who showed that colored phones can look beautiful without looking cheap, and so the other phone companies were encouraged to do colored phones as well.

It's just like with the Windows design. It may not be original, but it looks miles better than that 1996 one. Everyone is following MS's design, not the older one.

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 10:20

3. KingKurogiii (Posts: 5620; Member since: 23 Oct 2011)


the three things that may sway me over to Samsung is a premium design, a flatter, better looking UI and the use of Nano SIM's so that i can swap between phones like i can now with my Moto X and my iPhone 5S.

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 10:46

4. Liveitup (Posts: 1319; Member since: 07 Jan 2014)


Clearly inspired by Windows Phone.

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 11:06 8

5. SleepingOz (unregistered)


No, it's inspired by Google apps' design.

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 11:11

6. Liveitup (Posts: 1319; Member since: 07 Jan 2014)


Google app design is also inspired by WP, Flat, clean ,minimalistic WP was doing that when no one else was, Google can call it card UI or whatever, the fact is at the end of the day you can put lipstick on a pig, its still a pig.

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 11:31 1

9. ihavenoname (Posts: 1426; Member since: 18 Aug 2013)


We are talking about UI design, not animal make up. And if flat is in, why wouldn't Google use it?

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 11:49

12. Liveitup (Posts: 1319; Member since: 07 Jan 2014)


Exactly Flat is in thanks to WP.

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 11:57 1

14. SleepingOz (unregistered)


Do you even read the BS you're posting? Seems like it's a waste of time to argue with fanboys this biased.

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 12:32

18. Liveitup (Posts: 1319; Member since: 07 Jan 2014)


How can you call someone biased for pointing out the truth. When WP was doing flat UI Android and iOS was doing something different, its a very fair call to make especially when you take into account the amount of hate that WP gets here from Android and to a lesser extent iOS fanboys.

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 11:32 2

10. rd_nest (Posts: 770; Member since: 06 Jun 2010)


Patent 6,724,403 filed way back in 2000:

http://www.google.co.in/patents/US6724403

You're welcome.

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 12:33

19. Liveitup (Posts: 1319; Member since: 07 Jan 2014)


You are missing the point buddy, Microsoft would not have been able to patent the same thing as Surfcast.

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 11:54 3

13. SleepingOz (unregistered)


So you're telling me that MS invented flat and clean design? Google was heading in the minimalistic direction since Honeycomb. The new card UI is a logical evolution one would expect.
And seems like rd_nest's got you served.

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 12:37

20. Liveitup (Posts: 1319; Member since: 07 Jan 2014)


When Microsoft was doing Flat UI, Google was being accused of copying iOS Skeumorphism UI. Microsoft introduced Flat UI before Android , before honeycomb or any OS version that Android has.

Its clear to see that even with Honeycomb update where Android was at that point to where it is now with Kitkat 4.4 is like night and day. If you want to get technical about it Zune predates Honeycomb and that was Flat.

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 13:02 3

21. SleepingOz (unregistered)


WP7 was launched in late Oct 10, first Honeycomb screenshots were leaked in late Nov 10. So you're telling me that it took only 1month to Google to build Honeycomb? Or perhaps they copied Zune? Seriously?! And never knew MS invented flat UI..

http://jetlib.com/news/2011/02/02/here%E2%80%99s-what-pulse-will-look-like-on-android-honeycomb/
And yeah right, it's literally night and day since the main difference between them are basically just the colour of the bg. From darker colours to lighter ones.. Otherwise, the UI didn't change that much.

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 18:28

29. Liveitup (Posts: 1319; Member since: 07 Jan 2014)


Honeycomb was never associated with being Flat, at least not as a consistent design language, in 2010 Android was doing Skeumorphism UI. Even so WP good much of it's flat inspiration from Zune UI . Zune was launched years before Honeycomb. WP itself was launched before Honeycomb and Flipboard.

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 14:39

26. night_elf (Posts: 38; Member since: 02 Apr 2013)


and all of the above is inspired by flipboard

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 12:23

16. andhraking17 (Posts: 36; Member since: 06 Jul 2013)


check the image 14 guys

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 17:19

27. hurrycanger (Posts: 1182; Member since: 01 Dec 2013)


That's one ugly moment.

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 13:43

22. taz89 (Posts: 2014; Member since: 03 May 2011)


Lol is this how pathetic things have gotten, people now claiming something being flat or having slim fonts is apparently copying. What's next having a settings app called settings will be considered copying too.

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 13:56

23. superduper (Posts: 150; Member since: 20 Oct 2013)


This has iOS written all over it:
White background
Symbol + Text buttons
Slender typography

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 18:25

28. Liveitup (Posts: 1319; Member since: 07 Jan 2014)


Google or Bing "iOS7 inspired by Windows Phone".

posted on 03 Feb 2014, 14:07

25. skymitch89 (Posts: 1075; Member since: 05 Nov 2010)


I don't see anything different from the WatchOn app shots here compared to what I have on my Note 3. of course, that could mean that the WatchOn app on my Note 3 has already been updated to this version and I just never had the chance to use the other version(s).

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