How to Make Network Connections on Your Gear S2

By Eric Butow

The Connections options screen on your Gear S2 smartwatch, shown here, allows you to change options for the Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and Near Field Communication (NFC) settings so that you can turn these options on and off as well as control related features.

3001_Connections
The word On appears underneath the Bluetooth setting to let you know the Bluetooth service is on.

Bluetooth

To open the Bluetooth options screen, tap Bluetooth in the options list. The Gear S2 turns on Bluetooth by default after you set up your smartwatch for the first time. You can turn off Bluetooth by tapping Bluetooth on the screen. If you have a Bluetooth headset, you can connect your headset to your Gear S2 and listen to music stored on your smartwatch. Just tap BT Headset to have the Gear S2 search for your headset. When your Gear S2 finds the headset, your smartwatch connects with the headset automatically so that you can start grooving.

Wi-Fi

Tap Wi-Fi in the options list to open the Wi-Fi options screen. The Gear S2 turns Wi-Fi on automatically after you set it up for the first time. Tap Wi-Fi on that same screen to turn off Wi-Fi.

By default, the Gear S2 connects to your smartphone using the Bluetooth service, so the Gear S2 uses your smartphone’s Wi-Fi connection as well. However, if you turn off your smartphone, your widgets won’t be able to connect to the Internet and give you correct information, such as the correct temperature in the Weather widget.

Samsung has your back (or is it your wrist?). Search for available Wi-Fi networks by swiping up in the Wi-Fi options screen and then tapping Wi-Fi Networks in the menu. The Gear S2 scans for available Wi-Fi networks and displays a list in the Wi-Fi Networks screen. You can view all entries in the list by swiping up and down on the screen or rotating the bezel left and right. If you can’t find a network, tap Scan at the bottom of the screen.

When you find a Wi-Fi network, connect to it by tapping the network name. You may need to type the password (which is a challenge on the Gear S2). After you type the password or enter any network-specific information on the screen, tap Connect.

After a second or two, the connection screen appears for another second or two. The Wi-Fi network in the Wi-Fi Networks screen shows that you’re connected. Press the Back button three times (just as with the ruby slippers) to return to the Connections options screen.

If you find that you don’t have a Wi-Fi network, press the Back button three times until you reach the Connections options screen. Then you can turn the Bluetooth service back on and connect to your smartphone’s Wi-Fi network.

If you turn on the Bluetooth service while you’re connected to a Wi-Fi network, the Gear S2 automatically disconnects from the Wi-Fi network and then turns on the Bluetooth service.

If you connect to an open Wi-Fi network, you open the possibility for evildoers to intercept the data being transferred over the network. It’s always good practice to connect to a secure Wi-Fi network whenever possible, no matter whether you’re connecting to a Wi-Fi network with your Gear S2 or with your Android smartphone.

NFC

NFC (no, not the pro football conference; it stands for Near Field Communication) is a cool new feature that allows you to pay for goods and services right on your watch using a supported pay feature such as Samsung Pay, which Samsung plans to make available in the United States sometime in 2016.

NFC is turned on by default, but you can turn it off by tapping NFC in the options list and then tapping NFC in the NFC options screen. You can also pay for an item from within the NFC options screen by tapping Tap and Pay. If you don’t have a payment app installed on your watch, you see a screen informing you of that fact.

Samsung Pay on the Gear S2 was already available in some countries before its availability in the United States, so check the Samsung website to see whether you can use Samsung Pay with your Gear S2 where you live.