Mar 25 AT 9:05 AM Alex Wagner 8 Comments

Sony to pass on Android Wear, will use own SmartWatch platform instead

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LG and Motorola recently showed off their upcoming Android Wear devices, and Google has confirmed that companies like Asus, HTC and Samsung are also on board with its new wearable platform. Notice a major manufacturer missing from that group? Yeah, Sony.

Turns out that that’s not a mistake, as Sony has confirmed that it doesn’t plan on using Android Wear on its devices. Instead, the company will continue to utilize its own Android-based SmartWatch platform, which has powered both the original SmartWatch and SmartWatch 2. Sony Mobile Communications USA President Ravi Nookala explained that his company has already invested time and resources into building up its own platform, and so it would like to continue to use it.

It’s understandable that Sony doesn’t want to suddenly drop its SmartWatch platform after pouring efforts into building it up, but it also seems that shunning Android Wear may not be the most awesome idea that Sony has ever had. The fact that Android Wear is backed by Google and several major manufacturers means that it’s likely to get quite a bit of attention from consumers, and while Sony SmartWatches may continue to sell after Android Wear products hit the market, the number of Android Wear devices will likely be much greater than the number of SmartWatches. That’s not exactly good news for Sony and its potential SmartWatch adoption rate.

After touching a bit on wearables, Nookala talked about smartphones. The exec revealed that sales of the T-Mobile-exclusive Xperia Z1S are “20 percent to 25 percent” higher than the number of Xperia Z units that T-Mobile moved during the same timeframe. When asked if Sony had any plans to launch Xperia phones on U.S. carriers other than T-Mobile, Nookala would only tease that his firm is in talks with all of the major operators.

Source: CNET

Editorial Director of News and Content for PhoneDog Media. Fluent in whisk(e)y, video games and phones. Can be followed on Twitter at @alw.

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  • Bill Brubeck

    This is not a smart move to pretend that Sony’s smart watch platform has any hope of succeeding after Google Wear devices come out. Sony Mobile Communications USA President Ravi Nookala is a fool. I’d take off that label if he had the common sense to at least have both their own smart watch platform while also using Google Wear.

  • Louie

    “The fact that Android Wear is backed by Google and several major manufacturers means that it’s likely to get quite a bit of attention from consumers, and while Sony SmartWatches may continue to sell after Android Wear products hit the market, the number of Android Wear devices will likely be much greater than the number of SmartWatches.”

    Yeah, more crappy/cheap devices has proven to always be a better business technique then fewer devices with focused design. I mean, just look at PCs and netbooks! There are so many people that need to get out of the prediction business.

    Sony may succeed or fail but their future is in their hands and not mingled in with everyone else’s offerings.

  • alphabravocharlie

    bad move by sony

  • donger

    Why Sony?

  • http://theandroidappshow.com Lane

    This confuses me. Hasn’t Sony been moving lately to implement an experience on phones that is as close to vanilla as possible without fully being vanilla? Why would they continue to operate their watches on a fork of Android rather than a version built specifically for watches?

    Maybe the spec requirements are too high and they are trying to come in even lower on price is the only thing I can think of.

  • http://www.technogasms.com Sean Riley

    I love their cameras and even their phones to some degree, but having used both their smartwatches they don’t know what they are doing and could probably use Android Wear more than anyone including Samsung.

  • jamal adam

    Clearly they know what they are talking about, especially considering their smartwatches have been selling crazy….not. I hope that they decide against this before it’s too late.

  • masterpfa

    Why Sony
    Are you telling us you are pulling out of the Smart Watch arena?

    To date your watches have not been a success so unless you have something up your sleeves I personally think this is a bad move. Or is this just the opinion of one person on the Sony board that in a few years will result in an embarrassing climb down?