Android Wear Announces their First LTE-Enabled Smartwatch

The new LG Urbane 2. (Image courtesy of Android Official Blog)
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When it comes to smartwatches, one of the biggest limitations has been the need to be in close proximity to your phone or to a WiFi connection for them to connect to the Internet, send texts, or make calls. Products like the Apple Watch require a Bluetooth connection to your iPhone, or a WiFi connection, to take advantage of all the watch’s features.

Some question the point of having a “do anything” watch on your wrist if it necessitates carrying your phone around in your pocket anyways.

That’s all about to change with the recent announcement that Android Wear now has the ability to add LTE cellular support to their devices. This is a massive step forward in the world of smartwatch connectivity.

The first Android Wear watch with LTE cellular support is the LG Urbane 2nd Edition, which is able to squeeze an LTE radio into its stunningly small form factor (which includes a 480x480 circular screen). This means you can leave your phone behind, and as long as both devices are connected to the network, when people call your number, your watch will ring (and you can take the call right there).

At its heart, the LG Urbane 2 has a 1.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon processor (from the same family as the processor on the Qualcomm DragonBoard) doing the heavy lifting, and also incorporates Bluetooth 4.1, WiFi connectivity, and a 9-axis gyroscope/accelerometer/compass sensor, along with a barometer and a heart rate sensor. The 480x480 OLED display offers 348ppi resolution. This watch will go on sale this week at both AT&T and Verizon.

This is a big upgrade for smartwatch enthusiasts, and consumers can expect to see other smartwatch manufacturers following suit in the near future.

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