Rumors of Google building a smartwatch started last summer, when the search giant acquired a wearable tech company, and now that the device is getting closer to reality, there are doubts concerning who is going to make it: LG or WIMM?
LG confirmed that it will launch a smartwatch based on Google’s mobile operating system this year, but if we are to believe some rumors, the wearable might be made for Google itself. The South Korean tech company proved at CES 2014 that it has what it takes for building wearables. Its Lifeband Touch, while not a revolutionary product, was enough to demonstrate that LG can design and manufacture nice and functional wearables.
Google, on the other hand, had plans for making an Android smartwatch and console ever since last summer, and most sources claimed that both these products would see the light of day in 2014. Since LG seems to be Google’s latest favorite manufacturer, having built both the Nexus 4 and 5, a smartwatch coming from this South Korean company shouldn’t surprise anyone.
According to Park Jong-seok, the chief of LG’s mobile unit, Google’s smartwatch will be compatible not only with this South Korean manufacturer’s smartphones, but also with devices made by other companies.
Rumor has it, however, that LG is not the only contender to making a smartwatch for the search giant. Chances are that Google’s watch might resemble WIMM One (pictured above), a wearable made by a company Google bought last August. Sources told TechCrunch that the early prototypes featured a metal strap, much like Pebble Steel. To cut down the costs and speed up production, Google is said to have replaced that metal strap with a plastic one, thus making the smartwatch look more common. On top of that, if former employees of WIMM Labs are to build Google’s smartwatch, then the wearable will focus on Google Now.
Regardless of who will be designing and manufacturing it, the Nexus smartwatch (I think it’s safe to call it that, despite the rumors that Google plans to put an end to the Nexus line in 2015) will surely be launched this year – in March or June if it’s made by WIMM’s former employees, or later on if it’s made by LG. The price is yet another detail we’ll only find out on launch day.