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Wednesday, February 08, 2017
Android Wear 2.0 Goes Live With New LG Watch Sport And Style Smartwatches, Verizon's First Smartwatch

Android Wear 2.0 is finally here in the LG Watch Sport, the LG Watch Style, and Verizon's first smartwatch, the Wear24

Android Wear 2.0 was first announced way back in May 2016 at Google I/O, and is the most significant update to the smartwatch operating system thus far. It was originally set to launch in the fall last year but Google pushed the release in order to ensure software quality requirements.

Google's updated smartwatch platform gives you more informative watch faces, better workouts, new ways to use apps, more ways to stay in touch and on-the-go help from Google Assistant.

You can now personalize your Android Wear always-on watch face with information and actions from your favorite apps. Glance at your wrist to check your next appointment, stock performance, progress on fitness goals, or whatever is important to you. A quick tap on your watch face lets you order an Uber ride, start a workout, or get in touch with your significant other. If you are interested in different info throughout the day, just swipe to switch your watch face as you go from the office to the gym to dinner with friends and home again.

Google Fit, the pre-installed fitness app on most Android Wear watches, now lets you track your pace, distance, calories burned and heart rate as you're walking, running or cycling. You can also measure weight-lifting reps, in addition to push-ups, sit-ups and squats. When you work out with a cellular-connected Android Wear watch, you can stay in touch with calls and messages, stream tunes from Google Play Music and still use your favorite apps right on your watch.

With Android Wear 2.0, you can choose which apps you want on your watch and download them directly from the new on-watch Google Play Store. If your watch has a cellular connection, you can make calls and use your watch apps no matter where your phone is. Whether you use an Android phone or iPhone, you'll be able to use apps built for Android Wear 2.0, like AccuWeather, Android Pay, Bring!, Foursquare, Google Fit, Google Messenger, Google Play Music, Lifesum, Robinhood, Runkeeper, Runtastic, Strava, Telegram, Uber and many more.

Now it's easier to read and respond to a message right from your watch. When you receive a message, you can expand the notification and tap to respond by dictating, typing or handwriting your answer, or drawing an emoji. Try it out on apps like Facebook Messenger, Glide, Google Messenger, Hangouts, Telegram or WhatsApp. Need to respond quickly and discreetly? Use Smart Reply, which instantly and intelligently suggests different responses based on the message you received.

Android Wear 2.0 brings the Google Assistant to your wrist, so you can find answers and get things done hands free. Ask your Google Assistant about the weather or remind yourself to bring an umbrella. Make a restaurant reservation or navigate to work. To ask for help, hold down the power button on your watch or say "Ok Google." The Google Assistant is available in English and German on Android Wear and will be available in other languages in the coming months.

The first watches with Android Wear 2.0 are the LG Watch Style and LG Watch Sport.

The LG Watch Style is thin, light, and comfortable to wear. It's available in three classic designs and finishes-silver, rose gold and titanium-and compatible with snap-and-swap 18mm leather and silicone bands out of the box. The rotating power button lets you scroll through your stream, bring up the app launcher, or get help from your Google Assistant.

The LG Watch Sport is Android Wear's most powerful watch yet. Available in titanium and dark blue, the LG Watch Sport comes with a high performance elastomer strap, NFC for payments, GPS for tracking exercise and navigation, a heart rate sensor for your workouts, and cellular connectivity. With dedicated buttons for Google Fit and Android Pay, plus a rotating power button, it lets you instantly launch your favorite apps. From phone calls to payments, LG Watch Sport is pretty much everything you need whether you're running the trails or just running some errands.

If you're in the U.S., you can find the LG Watch Style at Best Buy and the Google Store and the LG Watch Sport at AT&T, Verizon and the Google Store, starting February 10. These watches will be available at carriers and retailers across Canada, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, Taiwan, UAE and UK in the coming weeks.

LG Watch Sport LG Watch Style
  • 1.38-inch P-OLED, 480 x 480 pixel display
  • Ambient light sensor
  • 316L stainless steel
  • Gorilla Glass 3
  • Thermoplastic Polyurethane strap
  • 1.1GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon Wear 2100 processor
  • 768MB RAM
  • 4GB storage
  • 430mAh battery
  • Wi-Fi
  • Bluetooth
  • GPS
  • NFC (for Android Pay)
  • IP68 dust and water resistant
  • Titanium or Dark Blue colors
  • $349
  • 1.2-inch P-OLED, 360 x 360 pixel display
  • Ambient light sensor
  • 316L stainless steel
  • Gorilla Glass 3
  • Italian leather strap
  • 1.1GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon Wear 2100 processor
  • 512MB RAM
  • 4GB storage
  • 240mAh battery
  • Wi-Fi
  • Bluetooth
  • IP67 dust and water resistance
  • Silver, titanium, or rose gold colors
  • $249 ($279 for rose gold)

Android Wear 2.0 will be available for all supported watches in the coming weeks.

Current watches getting Android Wear 2.0 include: ASUS ZenWatch 2 & 3, Casio Smart Outdoor Watch, Casio PRO TREK Smart, Fossil Q Founder, Fossil Q Marshal, Fossil Q Wander, Huawei Watch, LG Watch R, LG Watch Urbane & 2nd Edition LTE, Michael Kors Access Smartwatches, Moto 360 2nd Gen, Moto 360 for Women, Moto 360 Sport, New Balance RunIQ, Nixon Mission, Polar M600 and TAG Heuer Connected.

Verizon's first smartwatch

Besides the announcement of LG?s first Android Wear 2.0 watches, Verizon is also releasing its own branded Android Wear device, called the Wear24.

Like LG?s newest watches, the Wear24 runs the newly released Android Wear 2.0 software. It offers a 1.39-inch circular display at 480 x 480 resolution, with LTE, Wi-Fi, and NFC connectivity options, along with the usual gamut of sensors, including an accelerometer and heart rate sensor.

The Wear24 will be available on Verizon for $300 with a two-year contract sometime next month.

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