Sony Unveils Android Wear-Powered SmartWatch 3
BERLIN -- Top mobile manufacturers like LG, Motorola and Samsung have all caught the Android Wear bug, and now it's Sony's turn. Launching this fall for roughly $300, the company's SmartWatch 3 touts Google's wearable-based operating system while delivering some style and functionality improvements over its predecessor.
Not unlike the LG G Watch and Samsung Gear Live, the SmartWatch 3 sports a rubber wristband and a rounded, rectangular display. The device's 1.6-inch, 320 x 320 TFT LCD Transflective display is built for maximum view-ability in bright light, and its IP68 waterproof rating makes it a bit more safe for a swim than the IP57-rated SmartWatch 2.
On the inside, the SmartWatch 3 packs a 1.2-GHz quad-core ARM A7 processor with 512MB RAM and 4GB of storage, as well as an accelerometer, gyrometer, compass and GPS for tracking your activities and whereabouts. The wearable works with smartphones running Android 4.3 and up, and, like other Android Wear-based devices, supports voice commands via its built-in microphone.
If you don't need Android running on your wrist, Sony also unveiled its simpler but still-stylish SmartBand Talk. Taking the shape of a fitness band, this rubber wrist wearable allows you to make HD voice calls and features a 1.4-inch, persistent e-paper display that displays the time and notifications. The accessory is IP68 waterproof, and sports both an accelerometer and altimeter to accurately track how you tackle your daily runs and hill climbs.
Both new watches will support Sony's new Lifelog app, which allows users to set fitness goals, bookmark their favorite achievements and view their activity data on the Sony Mobile website. Sony said that it will open the Lifelog API to other services, which makes the app sound like the company's answer to Apple's HealthKit.
With the SmartWatch 3 and SmartBand Talk, the rapidly growing Android Wear and fitness band markets just got even bigger. We expect to get some hands-on time with both watches here at IFA 2014, so stay tuned for our hands-on impressions.