Chinese manufacturer's smartwatch will be limited
ZTE's own forthcoming smartwatch device will only work with ZTE smartphones when it launches early next year, according to a new report from The Wall Street Journal. The Chinese smartphone maker already confirmed that it has smartwatch devices in the works for the second quarter of 2014, but this new word is the first that those devices will be limited in their smartphone compatibility. The limitations on device compatibility may help to ensure a larger feature set for ZTE's devices, but it will also almost certainly limit their attractiveness in the consumer electronics market.
eBay Now's same-day delivery service free until Christmas Eve
Auction site eBay announced today that its local shopping and delivery service, eBay Now, is offering free delivery from now until Christmas Eve on orders more than $25. The eBay Now service is available for customers in San Francisco and the Bay Area, San Jose, parts of New York City and Chicago for delivery of local products within an hour of ordering online.
A smartwatch unstuck in time
If the tech analysts and manufacturers are to be believed, we sit on the cusp of a boon in wearable technology. With its Galaxy Gear smartwatch, Samsung has tried to get the jump on its competitors -- pushing out a powerful, feature-heavy smartphone companion while other devices focus on displaying notifications and showing what time it is. The Galaxy Gear has had a rough debut, but does the truth of the device lie somewhere between Samsung's marketing speak and the tech press' takes on it? Find out in our in-depth review.
Sony SmartWatch 2, better made, more functional, faster
Sony started experimenting with Android smartwatches in 2012, sometime before there was any real hype about the concept. After giving the original Sony SmartWatch an update in earlier this year that extended its functionality considerably, Sony has now released its SmartWatch 2. The new device is much more substantial in its fit, finish, choice of materials and build quality bringing a new level of all-round refinement to the experience. So is it worth the trouble of owning yet another device that you have to charge?
Prototype integrates six displays
Nokia recently submitted a patent filing for a smartwatch concept that features modular display components. The application describes a wearable device with up to six displays, each capable of showing separate content as the band is rotated around the wrist.
Fitness smartwatch designed as standalone device, tracks workouts
Adidas has introduced a new smartwatch that it says is designed for runners. The watch, announced just one day after Nike revealed its updated FuelBand SE, is a standalone device that includes an integrated GPS and heart rate sensor, which it combines with movement sensors to monitor the wearer's training session.
Smartphones, smart watch sold off-contract, unlocked from Sony directly
Sony has put two new Xperia smartphones and an upgraded smart watch on sale in the United States, off-contract. The unlocked Xperia Z Ultra LTE and Xperia Z1 have gone on sale through the company's online store, and are accompanied by the follow-up to the SmartWatch, the SmartWatch 2, which also goes on sale today.
Toq compatible with Android 4.0.2 and up, available later in 2013
Qualcomm Connected Experiences, a division of Qualcomm, today announced that it will release a smartwatch sometime in the fourth quarter of 2013. Designed to serve as a second display to a smartphone, the Qualcomm Toq ('talk') smartwatch will feature the new Qualcomm Mirasol display technology, a reflective, low-power display that enables an always-on viewing experience, wireless charging by Qualcomm WiPower LE technology, and stereo Bluetooth audio, all while offering its wearer long battery life with seamless connectivity to their smartphone.
Casio chief says company ready for smartwatch revolution
The chief executive of Casio says his company is already prepared to face new competition in the watch sector from tech giants like Apple and Samsung. Speaking with The New York Times, Kazuo Kashio proclaimed that his company has long known the value of the wrist with regard to wearable computing, and that it has been preparing accordingly. Casio has already introduced devices that integrate a number of mobile technologies.
Galaxy Gear gets tipped before Sept. 4 reveal
Ahead of a confirmed September 4 unveiling new images have emerged on the Internet showing off a prototype Samsung Galaxy Gear smartwatch. VentureBeat got a look at the prototype device, which it says had been shipped out to developers and a few select partners. Samsung, reportedly, will make a big push at positioning Galaxy Gear as a fitness companion.
Gear Manager app to change watch face, app settings on Galaxy Gear
The Samsung Galaxy Gear smartwatch will pair with a smartphone over NFC, according to newly-leaked screenshots. Images said to be from the Samsung Gear Manager app show that the Galaxy Gear will initially pair quickly over NFC, with further connections between phone and watch to take place over its low-power Bluetooth 4.0 radio.
Smartwatch to be revealed at same time as Galaxy Note III
An executive at Samsung has confirmed that its smartwatch will be launching at its September 4th event at IFA, alongside the Galaxy Note III. Mobile business executive vice president Lee Young-hee said that Samsung will "be introducing a new wearable concept device called Galaxy Gear" at the event, though initial reports of a flexible screen are apparently incorrect.
Crowdfunded smartwatch touts built-in 3G data connection, 5MP camera
Another smartwatch has taken crowdfunding platform Kickstarter by storm, beating its initial $100,000 funding request within its opening days. The Omate TrueSmart is billed as a "truly standalone water-resistant smartwatch" that is able to work independently of smartphones, thanks to its built-in 3G connection.
New tablet, phablets from LG due by end of 2013
LG will be releasing a tablet by the end of this year, according to a company executive. Dimitar Valev, mobile communications head at LG Bulgaria, also revealed that it will also launch a new phablet later this year, as well as hinting at what to expect from the company in terms of smart watches, bendable displays, and Firefox OS devices next year.
Samsung Galaxy Gear, dual-core 2.5-inch display, for Galaxy phones-only
The Samsung Galaxy Gear smartwatch expected to be unveiled on September for ahead of IFA Berlin has had its specifications leak out. According to Gigaom, the device will sport a multitouch 2.5-inch 320x320 OLED display and be powered by a dual-core processor clocked as high as 1.5GHz. Like the rumored Apple iWatch, the Samsung Galaxy Gear will also include health sensors designed to tie in to the health-based apps that feature on the Galaxy S4.
Report claims Galaxy Gear reveal occurring on same day as Galaxy Note 3 launches
Samsung is going to launch its long-rumored smartwatch at its Unpacked 2013 Episode 2 event on September 4th, according to a report. The smartwatch, named the Samsung Galaxy Gear according to recent trademark filings, could end up sharing the company stage at the IFA event in Germany with the expected Galaxy Note 3.
Touchscreen, ring flash touted for titanium smart timepiece
Hyetis has revealed a new Swiss-made smartwatch that the company will be opening up to pre-orders in the future. The Hyetis Crossbow boasts a 41-megapixel camera with a ring flash located on the top edge, contained in a titanium case with a sapphire crystal-fronted touchscreen, yet retains an automatic wound movement to keep time once the batteries run out.
Samsung smartwatch patent turned into render
The team at Voucher Codes Pro has engaged a graphic designer to mock up renders of what a recently filed Samsung smartwatch design patent would look like in the flesh. If the device, rumored to be called the Samsung Gear, reaches the market in this form it could be a runaway hit. Samsung has been developing flexible AMOLED technology, which it has dubbed Samsung Youm, for a number of years, but has yet to ship a product it. A wristwatch could be the most practical way of bringing the tech to a shipping device.
Second 'Gear' filing narrows focus to smartwatches, confirms name
Samsung may be bringing its long-rumored smartwatch under its Galaxy branding, according to a new trademark filing. Following on from an earlier trademark registration filed in late June of this year for the "Samsung Gear," the company has opted to file another registration, but this time for "Samsung Galaxy Gear."
Samsung smart watch said to have model number SM-V700
Samsung has already confirmed that it is working on a smart watch design for release some time in the near future, and now the device's model number has apparently leaked to the media. The model number SM-V700 showed up on Saturday on Zauba, showing a supposed device that is billed as a "Samsung mobile accessory (for R&D purpose)." The leak has no information on when the device might become available.
Sony SmartWatch 2 coming September 9, packs NFC, larger display
The Sony SmartWatch 2 has been confirmed for a September 9 launch after some confusion that it might have been due for a July 15 launch. When it was revealed in June, Sony informed the press that the device would reach customers in September and it appears the company will meet its launch window. While Sony is on to its second-generation smartwatch, Apple’s rumoured smartwatch appears as though it won’t reach the market until late 2014 as the company grapples with the technology that it plans to pack into the device.
Smartwatch being prototyped by Surface team, using translucent aluminum
The team behind the Microsoft Surface are working on a smartwatch for the company, according to reports. The wrist-based device, surfacing in rumors back in April, is apparently being prototyped by the team, which could end up adding Microsoft to an ever-increasing list of companies that are manufacturing smartwatches.
Name is trademarked, in some cases already associated with shipping products
After reports of Apple's trademarking of the term "iWatch" in a number of countries, it has been discovered that the name has already been trademarked for some time in the US, the UK and, in what could be a troubling development, China. In fact, China has previously trademarked both the term "iWatch" and "iWatching," reports Chinese news journal Sina Tech. In the US, a company that was trying to raise funds to manufacture a smartwatch (but was unsuccessful) already trademarked the name, while the UK trademark is used for a monitoring smartphone app.
Dell exploring possible smart watch, wearable devices
Dell may be looking towards moving into wearable computing, as the company continues to struggle against receding computer shipment figures. Global vice president of personal computing Sam Burd said that the PC producer is "exploring areas in that space," which could see Dell go against other major manufacturers in an emerging product market.
Trademark filing mentions watches, clocks that communicate with other devices
Samsung may have decided on a name for its smartwatch brand. A trademark filing with the United States Patent and Trademark Office placed on June 27th this year lists the trademark "Samsung Gear," with the potential name accompanied by a substantial list of electronics and software-based goods and services it could be applied to.
Jet Black Pebble on sale at first, others to follow after Kickstarter orders completed
The Pebble smartwatch will be hitting retail for the first time this weekend, allowing potential owners to pick up the device without waiting months for a pre-order to be fulfilled. The Kickstarter-funded watch will be appearing at Best Buy through an "exclusive retail launch partnership" with the retailer, with stores receiving stock of the watches for sale on Sunday, July 7.
Sony SmartWatch 2 can pair with smartphone using one-touch NFC
Sony has revealed it is making a second wearable computing device, something the company teased at the end of last week. The Sony SmartWatch 2 offers a larger 1.6-inch, 220x176-resolution touchscreen display compared to an earlier version of the watch, and this time adds a casing that's declared to be both dust and water resistant to an IP57 rating.
Sony Xperia Twitter account hints at SmartWatch update
Sony may be making an upgrade to its SmartWatch in the future, after the company made a number of hints on its Twitter account. Posts also mention the Mobile Asia Expo in Shanghai, which starts on Wednesday next week, which suggests it will be the venue of some sort of reveal, though it is not clear if it will be a brand new product or an update.
E Ink creates 1.73-inch display for smartwatches, launches in Sonostar Smartwatch
E Ink, a manufacturer of monochrome displays, has announced it is creating a 1.73-inch e-paper screen for use with smartwatches. Offering 16 shades of greyscale, a resolution of 320x240, and low power requirements, Slashgear reports that the display will be surfacing in the Sonostar Smartwatch, due to be shown later this week at Computex.
Pebble smartwatch firmware update adds multiple notifications, watchface
The Pebble smartwatch has received a firmware update, introducing more changes to the user interface. Notifications have been updated to allow for multiple items to be viewed, the UI for setting the time has been reworked, and the wearer's current speed in the RunKeeper app can now be viewed from the Pebble display. The minimalist Simplicity watchface has been added as an option instead of the Fuzzy Time watchface, which has now been transitioned to the watchapp library, according to the version 1.11 firmware release notes.
Smartwatch able to communicate back to smartphones
Pebble, the smartwatch that started life on Kickstarter, has received an extra $15 million in funding. The additional funding from investors, on top of the $10.2 million received through its Kickstarter campaign, comes at the same time as the company updates its SDK to include two-way communication for third-party Pebble apps.
Software giant's move into hardware may continue
Microsoft is the latest tech giant said to be working on designs for a smartwatch. Sources tell The Wall Street Journal that the Redmond-based company has been working with suppliers in Asia to acquire components for a wearable computing device, though the likelihood of such a device's release is uncertain. Should a Microsoft smartwatch emerge, it might find competition from similarly rumored devices from Apple and Google, as well as a confirmed device from Samsung.
Pebble firmware update fixes showstopping bug
Kickstarter-funded smartwatch Pebble has received an update to fix a showstopping bug. The new 1.9.1 firmware came into being following reports received by Engadget of users finding their timepieces stopped working after shutting down, and is said to fix the issue. Customers with watches on older firmware that do not switch back on can request for a replacement through e-mail or the companion Pebble app.
Sony SmartWatch points the way to the future
Sony released a major update for its year old Smartwatch over the past week and Electronista has spent some quality time with it over the past few days. With the hype starting to grow around possible smartwatch releases by Apple, Samsung, LG and Google this year, the Sony SmartWatch is a good yardstick for what we might expect. However, unlike rumors circulating regarding the smartphone-independent capabilities of the next-generation of smartwatches, Sony’s SmartWatch relies entirely on a companion smartphone to function.
Report claims LG joining race to develop smartwatch
LG is building their own smartwatch, according to reports. A source of the Korea Times claims the South Korean electronics manufacturer was developing such a device, though did not reveal if it would operate under Android, Firefox OS, or another operating system. The report follows other claims that Apple, Google, and Samsung are working on their own versions, in order to catch up with the Kickstarter-funded Pebble and the Sony SmartWatch.
Google latest company linked to intelligent wrist-based devices
Google is exploring the possibility of building its own smartwatch, according to reports. The device is allegedly being created by the company's Android division, instead of the X Lab where Glass was created, and follows news of other companies creating their own smartwatch devices, such as Samsung and Apple.
New Sony SmartWatch update brings new watch faces, other tweaks
Sony has given its SmartWatch the first major software update since its release. The device reached US shores nearly one year ago in April of 2012, during which time it has received one of two minor software revisions. The new update brings with it six new watch faces as well as other tweaks, arriving at a time where there is renewed interest in smartwatches thanks to reports that both Apple and Samsung are working hard to bring their own devices to market.
Samsung exec admits smartwatch deep in development
Samsung is racing to get its smartwatch to market ahead of the anticipated equivalent device from Apple, reports Bloomberg. According to the executive vice president of Samsung’s mobile business, Lee Young Hee, the Korean company has been working on the device for some time and is working hard to get it out the door. Smartwatches, along with wearable devices generally, are considered by some observers to be the next major growth segment in the mobile space and both Samsung and Apple are keen to tap into as soon as possible.
Adhesive for waterproofing partly to blame
A teardown of the Pebble smartwatch found it to be a fairly unrepairable device, though its expected longevity is a saving grace. The team at iFixit declined to give the Pebble a repairability score due to its uniqueness, but did praise the combination of its low-power e-paper display and weekly charging cycle, which gives the non-replaceable battery a lifespan of between six and ten years.
Samsung set to join the smartwatch trend
Screenshots purported to be from a forthcoming smartwatch from Samsung have emerged on a Korean messageboard. Spotted by Slashgear, the Samsung Galaxy Altius looks as though it will give users quick access to date and time, music playback controls, and email notifications. If accurate, the leak suggests that Samsung, like Apple, could well into the development of the next generation of wearable smart devices.
Apple could be well into smartwatch development
Lending further weight to Apple’s rumored plans for an ‘iWatch’, the company is said to have assigned up to 100 people to the project. An earlier rumors suggested that Apple might be experimenting with smartwatch-like device running the company’s iOS mobile operating system and using a new type of curved glass. The fresh rumor reported by Bloomberg would have Apple much closer to a potential product launch than previously thought.
No proof that it exists, but Nano users may have given Apple ideas
The watch-like shape of the previous-generation iPod nano inspired a cottage wristband industry of its own, turning the music player -- which also had a clock-face app and a few limited other uses -- into a form of "smart watch" that caught the fancy of millions. With advancements since 2010 in connectivity, Bluetooth and miniaturization, Apple could -- according to former Apple Human Interface Group founder Bruce "Tog" Tognazzini -- create its own smartwatch that could do even more.
First 500 watches despatched, delayed over airport paperwork
The Pebble smartwatch has started shipping to Kickstarter backers, though less than initially estimated. The low shipment numbers problem is accompanied by news of a possible delay in the iOS app for the watch, limiting what actions backers will be able to perform on the device once they receive their orders.
Factory creating 15,000 Pebble watches per week
The Pebble smart watch will be shipping to backers on January 23rd. Company CEO Eric Migicovsky made the announcement at CES, adding that the e-paper timepiece will be shipping in batches, and is good news to Kickstarter backers that have waited for the wrist-based gadget, including through a number of production delays.
Project Glass, smart watches to lead sales
The market for wearable computers will reach $1.5 billion by the year 2014, according to a recent study. The increase from the existing $800 million in sales this year will be driven by consumer spending on fitness and healthcare-related devices, which would include the likes of Google's Project Glass as well as smart watches.
Bluetooth 4 added to MetaWatch dev kit for iPhone 4s connectivity
Meta Watch has officially released a new smartwatch development system with Bluetooth 4.0, capable of integrating with both iOS and Android devices. A previous beta was limited to Android only. In iOS, an app pushes basic notifications to the watch for things like calls and messages. Developers have access to an API, though, which will let their own apps push virtually any information.
Extensions for Sony SmartWatch made open source
Two extensions for the Sony SmartWatch have been released as open source in an attempt to foster app development for the device. The 8 Game extension, a simple game based on sliding tiles to reorganize a picture, shows potential developers how they could create their own titles that can run on the timepiece. The Music extension permits the accessory to control music playback on the linked phone through supported media players, letting existing programming teams add SmartWatch functionality to their software.
Parties interested in developing for the $150 SmartWatch can download the SDK from Sony, with a further request from the electronics giant to suggest other extensions to release as open source.
SmartWatch allows remote Android phone control
Sony has made the MW2 SmartWatch available to preorder through its US online store. The SmartWatch offers a wearable 1.3-inch OLED touchscreen able to access most functions of a nearby Android smartphone remotely over Bluetooth 3.0.