The (second) moment of truth has come for Google’s Android Wear platform, which probably needs a miracle right about now to catch up to the total industry dominator that is the Apple Watch.
Could the LG Watch Sport and Watch Style act as miracle workers for the oft-delayed but vastly improved Android Wear 2.0? That’s doubtful, although the former definitely fits the description of the most powerful watch yet running this particular OS, at least on paper.
With NFC for wrist payments, built-in GPS for tracking exercise and navigation, its own heart rate sensor to keep up with your workouts, and standalone cellular connectivity, the LG Watch Sport is basically a wearable smartphone.
We mean that in a good way, especially with a sporty but also relatively fashionable look, robust but likely easy to maneuver body, titanium and dark blue color options, a rotating power button, dedicated keys for Google Fit and Android Pay, plus a 1.38-inch 480 x 480 P-OLED touchscreen.
Rated IP68 for water and dust resistance, the high-end intelligent timepiece packs a Snapdragon Wear 2100 processor as well, 768MB RAM, and 430 mAh battery.
As expected, the LG Watch Style essentially downgrades everything, from cell capacity to RAM, screen size and resolution, also doing without Android Pay support, GPS, LTE and the HR monitor of its big brother.
But hey, at least it comes with Google Assistant functionality out the box, interchangeable leather and silicone bands, fashionable silver, rose gold and titanium finishes, and above all, a price cut to $249. Both this and the $349 Watch Style are set to launch stateside on Friday, February 10, spreading to carriers and retailers across Canada, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, Taiwan, UAE and UK in the “coming weeks.”
In the US, the LTE-enabled wearable piece features AT&T and Verizon cellular support, while the LG Watch Style can be found at Best Buy and the Google Store.