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Sony SmartWatch launches, delivers 'Android power' to wrist

Image representing Sony as depicted in CrunchBase
Image via CrunchBase

The watch lets wearers read social updates, handle text messages, and manage calls directly from their wrist. It retails for $150.

Sony's SmartWatch works with Android smartphones.
(Credit: Sony )
Have you ever wanted a watch that can communicate with your Android phone? Sony sure hopes so.
Sony today launched its SmartWatch, a timepiece for the wrist that allows owners to read text messages, social updates and e-mail, manage calls, and control music. The SmartWatch connects to an Android phone via Bluetooth in order to deliver its functionality and capture what Sony calls "Android power."

The SmartWatch might be useful for those who don't want to continuously pull their smartphone out of their pocket, but it certainly won't win a fashion contest. The device's strap is rubber and comes in several colors, including white, pink, mint, and blue. However, the black strap comes standard, while the additional colors must be purchased separately. Sitting atop the strap is the watch's touch-screen OLED display measuring 1.3 inches. To alert users to an event or an incoming call, the timepiece vibrates.
Sony announced the SmartWatch at the Consumer Electronics Show in January. The company said at the time that the watch would work with Android phones from Sony, HTC, Motorola, Samsung, and others. Sony says the handset can run four days on a single charge and is both dust and splash proof.
This isn't Sony's first foray into the watch business. Back in 2010, the company launched LiveView, another watch that interacted with Android phones. Although it floundered after launch, the device is still for sale on Amazon for $54.99.
Sony's SmartWatch is available now for $149.99 on the company's online marketplace and in its stores. Sony says that it will "soon" announce availability at other retailers.
Sony sure has its hand in a lot of cookie jars. There’s the consumer electronics division which consists of TVs, Walkmen and everything else they used to be known for. There’s the computing division, Vaio and the like. There’s the gigantic PS3 brand and the not-so gigantic Vita brand. In short, the company likes to be a big part of whatever is going on in the tech-world. Now they are have hopped on the burgeoning smartwatch train as well. The cleverly named Sony SmartWatch is a functional and downright cool device that packs a punch at a fairly reasonable price.
If you haven’t been following Sony’s new wearable baby, the Sony SmartWatch is your average touchscreen-enabled watch that offers the kinds of smartphone integration that has become standard in the industry. This lets you read emails, texts and social network updates on the OLED-enabled device. There are also a ton of apps available for the watch, about 100 as of last count. You can check the weather, login to Facebook, Google Maps and do just about anything you do on your phone. Well, you probably can’t play Grand Theft Auto III(yet.)
Speaking of apps, Sony has just released a new SDK that is completely open source. This will allow developers full access to the creative suite of app-making tools without having to deal with the company directly. This SDK directly affects music and gaming applications, so if you are looking to make an app that finds clean toilets in your immediate vicinity you are, sigh, crap out of luck for now. If you have a great idea for an app, click here to access the code.
The Sony SmartWatch is still $150 and the company says a front-facing camera and Skype will appear in future iterations of the device. The future is awesome!


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