BARCENA— is taking a different approach to its wearables strategy. It’s hoping to appeal to those who value style design over utilitarian functionality.
The G tch R was the first incarnation of this design philosophy, now ’s following it up with two more: the tch Urbane the tch Urbane E. I got to try on both during a closed press event at Mobile rld Congress.
This is a smartwatch I can’t wait to wear. The tch Urbane is one of the most stylish smartwatches I’ve worn thus far, it actually reminds me of some of the women’s watches sold by fashion brs like Kors. I particularly love the Urbane’s rose gold chassis, not to mention the comfortable leather b outfitted it with. There’s also a brushed stainless steel version of the Urbane, if gold is not really your thing.
ke the G tch R, the Urbane sports a 1.3-inch D display contains a Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 processor 1GB of RAM. It’s also got a 410mAh battery, which said should last more than a day on just one charge. I’m curious to test this claim once we get the device in for review, especially since Android ar devices haven’t had the most reliable battery life.
The Urbane is essentially a more stylish, narrower version of the G tch R. It has many of the same features as its predecessor, like a heart-rate monitor, always-on watchface, barometer, water- dust-proofing. I imagine the style conscious will be much more attracted to this Android ar device than any of the others out on the market right now—I definitely was.
tch Urbane E
The Urbane E is not as stylish, or as thin, as the regular Urbane. It’s heavier, thicker, the watchb utilizes a metal clasp rather than a buckle.
It’s powered by all the same hardware as the regular Urbane, except for larger a 700mAh battery pack. As the name states, it also has stalone E. said it’s still sussing out the details of the data plans for this device, but that we’ll learn more about it in the next two months.
The Urbane E also has NFC built into the watchb for mobile payments, though you won’t be able to swap the watchbs because of this feature.
To get the mobile payments feature running, swapped out Android ar for its own custom version of webOS. The software utilizes a similar cards-like interface as ’s SmartTV UI, it’s packed with specialized fitness-centric apps developed by that can do things like measure your golf swing or map your hike with built-in G. so, instead of Now, the Urbane E uses ’s own Q Voice.
The Urbane E has three hardware buttons: one to bring up the interface, two on either side that you can customize to your liking. There is a bit of a learning curve; the interface isn’t like Android ar. said that if ’s Android ar does incorporate NFC payments in the future, it may then opt for the OS, but for now it’s sticking to webOS to offer these features. Though it doesn’t run Android ar, the Urbane E will nonetheless only work with Android devices.
said it will release both of these watches in Korea before launching them globally. It also explained it wanted to announce them now so as not to “lose momentum in wearable devices,” especially since it’s rumored the Apple tch may be launching soon.