Motorola, LG announce first crop of Android Wear-powered smart watches

Posted:
in General Discussion edited May 2014
Google's nascent Android Wear platform gained two standard-bearers Tuesday as American smartphone maker Motorola unveiled the Moto 360 and South Korean consumer products giant LG introduced the G Watch.



Motorola's Moto 360 is modeled after traditional round wristwatches, with a metal casing that the company says will be available in multiple styles. The shape is a stark departure from other smart watches on the market, which exclusively sport designs centered around a rectangular display.

"We decided that if we were going to do the Moto 360 we must do it round," Motorola consumer experience design executive Jim Wicks said.

"It's a very ambitious design. I remember presenting it to the engineers for the first time, this sort of dual reaction of excitement and sort of dread fear of 'how on earth are we gonna realize that," added Motorola designer Dickon Isaacs. "All the core components are technically completely brand new, ground-up in order to support this design vision."

Google features the Moto 360 heavily in its Android Wear promotional videos, though does not note the device by name. Motorola is in the midst of an ownership transition, having been sold by Google to Chinese computer giant Lenovo earlier this year.

LG G Watch


LG, meanwhile, appears to have been chosen to manufacture the de facto Android Wear reference platform. The company's G Watch sports a rectangular face, and LG -- which calls itself a "lead partner" in the Android Wear initiative -- touts the watch's low barrier to entry for developers.

"The opportunity to work with Google on LG G Watch was the perfect chance for LG to really pull out all stops in both design and engineering," said Dr. Jong-seok Park, president and CEO of LG Electronics Mobile Communications Company.

Neither company announced pricing information or hardware specifications, though both devices are expected to hit shelves this summer. Fashion brand Fossil is also planning an Android Wear-powered watch, but has yet to release details.

Google unveiled Android Wear, an initiative designed to adapt the company's Android platform for wearable devices, earlier Monday. Android Wear will provide hardware partners with access to frameworks for mobile notifications, "OK Google" digital assistant support, built-in health and fitness tracking, and two-way synchronization with Android handsets.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 82
    ws11ws11 Posts: 159member
    LG needs to go back to the drawing board on their design.

    Motorola has it right.

    [IMG ALT=""]http://forums.appleinsider.com/content/type/61/id/40027/width/500/height/1000[/IMG]
  • Reply 2 of 82
    rot'napplerot'napple Posts: 1,839member
    Looks like a lot of watch! If I were to wear a time piece no matter who made it, it better be such that I don't realize I have something on my wrist!

    I have found only one watch that is streamline enough for my tastes, and I don't even wear that... very often.

    Nice video of the Motorola watch. I wonder if the boys in Cupertino ever thought about the various department head VP of this, VP of that ever getting out and doing a video for an Apple product? :rolleyes:
  • Reply 3 of 82
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 19,817member
    Motorola has a website up already for the 360.
    http://moto360.motorola.com/
  • Reply 4 of 82
    rissriss Posts: 40member
    What a waste of time, resources and money%u2026 Why would anyone sane buy this crap? We've got smartphones for these things, even for, yeah - showing what TIME is it!

    I haven't used a watch since 1999 when they accidentally went swimming and when I got my first mobile (Nokia 6110) I never felt I need something on my wrist.
    The only thing I'm willing to put on my hand again must be more than just something spawned from a bad one night stand between a Watch and Android.

    I bet that Jony, Tim & co are rolling in tears when they see these idiotic products being introduced by clueless competitors%u2026
  • Reply 5 of 82

    Wait until Apple releases a round smartwatch and everyone screams bloody murder for copying Motorola.

     

    All while conveniently forgetting there have been several round iWatch renders and designs done by third parties that are over 1 year old now.

  • Reply 6 of 82
    singularitysingularity Posts: 1,329member
    <p>Wait until Apple releases a round smartwatch and everyone screams bloody murder for copying Motorola.</p><p> </p><p>All while conveniently forgetting there have been several round iWatch renders and designs done by third parties that are over 1 year old now.</p>
    But not from Apple. Third party renders from people that think Apple might do something doesnt count. Unless of course I missed an official Apple piece.
  • Reply 7 of 82
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member
    Originally Posted by EricTheHalfBee View Post

    Wait until Apple releases a round smartwatch and Samsung screams prior art for copying Robert Dudley.

     

    Fixed. :p 

  • Reply 8 of 82
    mazda 3smazda 3s Posts: 1,560member
    Wait until Apple releases a round smartwatch and everyone screams bloody murder for copying Motorola.

    All while conveniently forgetting there have been several round iWatch renders and designs done by third parties that are over 1 year old now.

    What do iWatch renders by fanboys have to do with Motorola's Moto 360 or a hypothetical production Apple iWatch?
  • Reply 9 of 82
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    ws11 wrote: »
    LG needs to go back to the drawing board on their design.

    Motorola has it right.

    1000

    They have the right idea with the round display (which they did on the $2000 Aura in 2008), thin bezel, and more jewelry-like appearance as compared to other "smart" watches, but I wouldn't say they have it right.

    The display is too large to be unisex and probably even too large to appeal to most non-geeks (unless they can change the culture like we've seen with smartphone sizes).
    The casing is too thick.
    No evidence of advanced biometrics which I believe are key.
    The round display gives rise to cost and production concerns.
    The thin bezel is great but I wonder if the final product will different.
    No info on specs like the PPI, processor, display type, or battery life make me wonder how this can be ready this Summer.
    The bright, mostly white display being shown seems to be strikingly different from what I'd expect from a device with a small battery.
  • Reply 10 of 82
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,589member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by WS11 View Post



    Motorola has it right.

    I am not so sure. I wonder if the 'classic watch' look will get tired rather quickly. 

     

    I think the Google video (last thread) did a great job of showing the potential of a wrist device beyond the medical/fitness applications. They made it look fun and youthful, though still geeky. 

     

    The advances will be fast and furious for certain. I suspect that the 'look' will be important but there are so many other variables such as functionality (not just what it 'can' do, but whether it actually works flawlessly), and battery life, that will determine whether the device will be truly a game changer. 

  • Reply 11 of 82
    jamieljamiel Posts: 20member
    How fragmented will the Android wearable market become. We've all seen what happened to Android. Fork this, fork that.
  • Reply 12 of 82
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member
    Originally Posted by JamieL View Post

    Fork this, fork that.

     

    Android Edibles. Because Google wants to be inside you without buying you a drink first.

  • Reply 13 of 82
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    riss wrote: »
    What a waste of time, resources and money%u2026 Why would anyone sane buy this crap? We've got smartphones for these things, even for, yeah - showing what TIME is it!

    I haven't used a watch since 1999 when they accidentally went swimming and when I got my first mobile (Nokia 6110) I never felt I need something on my wrist.
    The only thing I'm willing to put on my hand again must be more than just something spawned from a bad one night stand between a Watch and Android.

    I bet that Jony, Tim & co are rolling in tears when they see these idiotic products being introduced by clueless competitors%u2026

    1) Your assumption is that a wrist-worn wearable should be for primarily telling time and mirroring other features of a smartphone. I don't think this is what Apple has in mind.

    2) Watches a huge business even today.

    3) I can't conceive of a future where wearable electronics aren't a major part.
  • Reply 14 of 82
    moreckmoreck Posts: 187member
    Bless their hearts. They're trying so hard to emulate Apple, but they just. don't. get. it.

    A round smartwatch is the dumbest idea I've heard in a long time. Good job blowing money on R&D just to be different.
  • Reply 15 of 82
    bloggerblogbloggerblog Posts: 1,809member

    It seems any company who launches any product, no matter how incremental or insignificant it is, are yelping how their product is so "innovative" and a total "game changer". They're watering-down those terms to a point where one starts to look for new adjectives to describe what these terms once meant.

  • Reply 16 of 82
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    moreck wrote: »
    A round smartwatch is the dumbest idea I've heard in a long time.

    Why? It's certainly harder to produce a round display but I think it's the right direction for a wrist-worn device that needs to maintain the same appeal as a high-end watch.

    It seems any company who launches any product, no matter how incremental or insignificant it is, are yelping how their product is so "innovative" and a total "game changer". They're watering-down those terms to a point where one starts to look for new adjectives to describe what these terms once meant.

    We already have a term for adding water to poop. Diarrhea.
  • Reply 17 of 82
    ws11ws11 Posts: 159member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Moreck View Post



    Bless their hearts. They're trying so hard to emulate Apple, but they just. don't. get. it.



    A round smartwatch is the dumbest idea I've heard in a long time. Good job blowing money on R&D just to be different.

    Why is a round smartwatch so dumb?

     

    It looks pretty natural to me:

    image

     

    Even the UI adapts well to the circular display:

    image

    image

     

    Motorola's smartwatch check-list:

     


    • Quality build

    • Fashionable design

    • Clean UI

    • Large ecosystem

    • Functional

     

    While we're still waiting on complete specs, what else do you think Apple can do different? 

  • Reply 18 of 82
    mobiusmobius Posts: 376member
    moreck wrote: »
    Bless their hearts. They're trying so hard to emulate Apple, but they just. don't. get. it.

    A round smartwatch is the dumbest idea I've heard in a long time. Good job blowing money on R&D just to be different.

    What if you.just.don't.get.it?

    I think this a remarkably beautiful design for a smart-watch. I believe the key to developing a popular design is to make it either look very similar to the most prevalent watch form factor, which is round, or make it radically different - such as curving around the wrist.

    Providing the battery life is at least 3 days on a single charge, I think these will be very popular with geeks and non-geeks alike.
  • Reply 19 of 82
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    ws11 wrote: »
    While we're still waiting on complete specs, what else do you think Apple can do different? 

    Advanced biometrics (which don't look present by looking at the bottom of the rendered device), smaller size or sizes, thinner design, more classic design, better fit and finish, better UI, better battery life (which I interpret as using something like OLED with a light coloured Thin Helvetica Neue font on a black background to reduce power consumption), and a general lack of trying to make it a watch that has smartphone capabilities but rather a wrist-worn wearable that complements the iPhone and perhaps other Apple devices, like a secure BT system that will auto lock/unlock my iDevices and Macs based on proximity.
  • Reply 20 of 82
    clemynxclemynx Posts: 1,509member
    Keep note of all these devices. I wish AI would make a nice comparison once the iwatch comes out.
    A round design is a nice departure from what all others have been doing though.
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