Google Smartwatch Release Date Confirmed, Mass Production Of Nexus Device Starting Within Months [REPORT]
Wall Street Journal Says Google Now Based Smartwatch Coming Soon, Early To Mid-2014 Launch Anticipated
The Google smartwatch release date has been confirmed following , the Wall Street Journal reports that the device is coming in a matter of months. The Google smartwatch was previously rumored to be called the "Google Nexus Gem" smartwatch, but so far we don't have any confirmation about the name. What we do know is that the Google smartwatch is in its late stage of development and Google is preparing to begin mass production of the device through Asian suppliers. This information basically confirms Artem Russakovskii's rumor about the Google Gem, though he was wrong about the release date, " Google will announce a Nexus watch, codenamed Gem, likely together with the KitKat announcement. The date I have, which, once again, is about a month old, is also October 31st."
The Google smartwatch release date will certainly come well after the anticipated Nexus 5, Nexus 10 2 and Android 4.4 KitKat release date on November 1. The Google smartwatch seems likely to be a Nexus device running stock Android 4.4 KitKat. This seems particularly true because Phandroid has reported that Google Now will be the main element of the new Google smartwatch. Google Now is well regarded for its commands and ability to provide users with various notifications including, appointments, meetings, events, directions, remainders, movie show times and adapt itself to information that users are interested in. In terms of hardware the Google smartwatch doesn't seem like it will be a slouch either. Google has been working on software customization and features that would take advantage of the smartwatch's smaller profile and reduced hardware capabilities. For instance Google has prepared Bluetooth Low Energy support and notification listener services which will help reduce the strain on the smartwatch's battery life.
Having Google Now on a Google smartwatch linked to any Android phone would give the Google smartwatch a significant amount of functionality, well over what the Samsung Galaxy Gear, Sony Smartwatch 2 and Pebble smartwatch currently provide. This is doubly true if Google prices the Google smartwatch below the $300 Samsung Galaxy Gear which only works with the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 and Samsung Galaxy S4. Samsung is expanding compatibility but it will still be limited to other Samsung devices like the Samsung Galaxy S3, Samsung Galaxy Note 2. Samsung Galaxy Mega and Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini. The main differentiation between the Google smartwatch and many of these rival devices will be the stock Android 4.4 KitKat that a Google smartwatch will run, combined with the Google Now features as well as the lower price point that Google is able to set on Nexus devices. In our estimation the Google smartwatch is most likely to be built by Motorola which was rumored to be working on a xWatch way back when the Moto X was first released. Though on the other hand Google did acquire the smartwatch maker WIMM Labs two months ago, so Google could simply have them work under their Android team.
The Google smartwatch release date will likely fall in line with the anticipated release dates of other rival smartwatches. It seems like Apple is intending to hold off on releasing or announcing a smartwatch. The Apple event which saw the release of the iPad Air, iPad Mini 2, Macbook Pro and Macbook Air did not include the anticipated Apple iWatch. In all likelihood Apple is waiting to see how the smartwatch market plays out and what its competition will be. The smartwatch market is likely to get crowded with companies like Qualcomm releasing the Mirasol-enabled Toq smartwatch, an LG smartwatch in the future and HTC making noises that it too will be developing a smartwatch. Right now none of these first and second generation smartwatches are particularly attractive because they lack a great deal of functionality and app support. However, eventually we anticipate that once the proper infrastructure is in place we could see smartwatches become a major market and potentially revive the practice of wearing wrist watches. According to the Wall Street Journal there is money to be had in the wearable devices market, "However, analysts say that with the development of improved applications, wearable devices will become increasingly mainstream and a growing battleground for tech industry heavyweights like Google and Apple Inc. AAPL -0.86%Annual sales of wearable devices are projected to reach 485 million units by 2018, according to market-research firm ABI Research."
There is potential in the market, particularly if Google bundles the smartwatch together with the Nexus line of devices. A Nexus 5, Nexus 7 and Nexus 10 that can interact with the Google smartwatch, particularly if they come in some kind of package deal would make the Google smartwatch very attractive in a way that few rivals can compete with. Samsung and Sony are developing their own apps for their smartwatches but in terms of app support most consumers can anticipate the Google smartwatch to have better support in a way that only Apple can really rival. The first and second generation smartwatch market may have a wide range of devices being released but we expect that after the third and fourth generation there will only be two or three major competitors in the market.
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