Jan 11 AT 11:30 PM Nick Gray 40 Comments

Hands-on with the Sony SmartWatch

sony_smartwatch

Finding the perfect accessory for your Android phone got a bit easier this week with the unveiling of the Sony SmartWatch. Like the original Sony LiveView, the new SmartWatch connects to your Android phone via Bluetooth and displays a variety of notifications from social networks, emails and even access and control of applications on your phone. The Sony SmartWatch is an improvement over last year’s model with a full color display, accelerometer and a variety of color rubber wrist bands to choose from. For those who want a more traditional look, Sony also has a wrist band adapter that will allow users to connect a standard watch wristband.

The main difference between the Sony SmartWatch and the other Android watches we’ve seen at CES is that Sony’s watch is simply an accessory rather than a standalone device. The good news is that the Sony SmartWatch can now keep the time even if it is not paired with your Android phone. By design, the SmartWatch is limited in functionality, but that allows it to retain its charge for much longer than the i’m Watch and the Motorola ACTV.

Sony’s SmartWatch is compatible with all phones running Android 2.1 or higher. The Sony rep we spoke with mentioned that the final hardware will be tweaked slightly before launch, but we should see the Sony SmartWatch show up on Sony’s website and retail stores before the end of Q1 for $149.

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Nick is a tech enthusiast who has a soft spot for HTC and its devices. He started HTCsource.com (the first HTC blog) back in 2007 and later joined the Android and Me family in the summer of 2010.

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  • http://www.youtube.com/djmeas DjMeas

    This definitely looks great! As far as the functionality goes, what does the I’m Color line offer vs this one? And I wonder if the $200 price different will be justified.

  • Angie Wimberly

    So many watches.

  • thechad

    Love these Watches. I use Endomondo and this would be an excellent complement for that purpose. Anything that allows me to leave my phone in my pocket and not pull it out all the time would be so awesome!

    • King Chris Scott

      my thoughts exactly, this watch seems more of a device for people who work out a lot cuz of the the easy sync of the music and Endomondo app. Now if they add voice reply for txts then everyone should get one cuz you could be at work and txt all day and not get into trouble for using your phone.

  • YMS123

    This is the best looking smart watch so far

  • txbluesman

    Now I am starting to feel like George Jetson. He always wore a smart watch……lol. :-) Thanks for the story Nick.

    • Gorealla

      Why not Penny from inspector gadget? She had a tablet and a smart watch.

  • txbluesman

    Now I am starting to feel like George Jetson. He always wore a smart watch……lol. :-)

  • booyootoo

    Did you guys ask whether this will really work with any Android device? Because my liveview is either eating dust or on my wrist without actually being connected to my phone.

    I will wait and see whether this one works like it should. I’d really like to try it out.

    • http://htcsource.com Nick Gray

      Yes, it will work with any device as long as you are running Android 2.1 or higher. You need to download the app from the Android Market and then you’re all set. I really like the i’m watch a lot better, but for if the price is an issue, the Sony Smartwatch is a much better deal.

    • randy

      What seems to be the problem? Cuz I’m thinking of getting a liveview for myself.

  • spazby

    Android everywhere!

  • lokidokie

    So will this run Endomodo or the like? Or at least be able to display info from the app??
    If it can manage that, then I think I’m sold!

    • http://htcsource.com Nick Gray

      They have an API that developers can use to make widgets to interact with Android apps on the SmartWatch. Currently there are about 50 apps that have LiveView support and that number should jump once the SmartWatch hits the market.

  • http://k-selezneva.blogspot.com/ KatSelezneva

    I like this idea. I think it’s very convenient to have all notifications on my wrist, especially if the smartphone is deep in my bag. 2011 results for the mobile development world http://k-selezneva.blogspot.com/2012/01/2011-results-for-mobile-development.html

  • Hall Lo

    Looking good! Love how it makes things more convenient and easy :)

  • raichleb

    First folks stop wearing wristwatches because they use their phones to see what time it is. Now we’re going to start wearing wristwatches so we don’t have to look at our phones? Oh, the irony ;-)

  • Hans Duo

    Most readers here probably wouldn’t know this, but watches have made a huge comeback. Demand for mechanical timepieces is at an all-time high. The convenience of glancing at your wrist verses digging out your phone can’t be argued. On top of that is the jewelry/fashion aspect of watches. Think of them as functional bracelets. Yes, watches are cool again.

    The big fail for me on this one is the rubber strap. Lots of folks like them, but I’m not one of them. I don’t like the feel and to me it says “cheap”. Bring out a leather or stainless steel model (+1 for titanium) and they’ll get my attention.

    • raichleb

      I didn’t know then. Then again, I’m pretty sure I’m older than most of the folks who frequent this site, and I never stopped wearing one. Interesting comment. Thanks.

    • joe

      it’s supposed to come with an adapter to put it in regular watchbands, i hate that cheap rubber crap too.

  • portable

    WOW GREAT WATCH for one it has messaging how are you suppose to type on this and were is the area for the simcard…oh wait it has none so i can only connect to everything threw wifi not so convenient after all

  • vid500

    I like it, and most of all that they fixed the showing time disaster. Will consider buying one.

  • aryin

    seems too much for a screen too small

  • Jason

    Every time I see something like this I think of all the anime and kids shows where the kid has a huge watch/wrist mounted device. What was it, Power Rangers? Digimon? Yugioh?

  • Jeremy

    Does this get internet?

  • Gadgety

    The one crucial improvement to the Smartwatch over the Liveview is the ability to keep time even if not connected.

    The previous LiveView didn’t work with most other Android phones due to bluetooth issues even though SonyEricsson said it would. There were very few updates to the software, and they didn’t resolve the issues original buyers had. So I’ll hold off until I see it working regardless of what Sony says.

    Keep in mind that the Sony Smartwatch screen is rather low resolution @139 ppi compared to the i’m Watch which has 220 ppi, or the 176 ppi of the MotoACTV.

  • mutaz

    Dears,

    I am looking to buy this item (Sony SmartWatch) and i am stay in JO so how can i get it.

  • Tarek

    Er….. The previous watch, the Sony Ericsson live view could keep the time even though its not paired, you have to pair it up first then you can disconnect and you’ll have the time. Why does the articles says it couldn’t?

  • joe

    So if you have a live view will it run the new app and software thus making it as good minus the touch screen ??

  • bayezid

    Wow!! Sony Ericsson has really made an awesome Watch. I have got a nice review on it from http://startuptunes.com/2012/04/21/sony-ericsson-smartwatch-whats-the-time/ . Tech is really going so far that unbelievable.

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