If you’re looking for a smartwatch in the next few years, you likely won’t want for choice. A new report pegs LG as developing its own take on the new category, according to The Korea Times on Friday. LG is supposedly working on a smartwatch as well as a product “similar to Internet giant’s Google Glass,” according to the paper’s sources, as part of a strategy to remain competitive long-term.
The LG smartwatch is in development alongside the Glass-like product as a “non-commercialized” R&D project, which essentially means it isn’t ready to ship. LG, like Samsung and a number of other handset makers, is no stranger to combining mobile phone technology with watch-based designs. The LG-GD910, for instance, was demoed at CES 2009 and featured a touchscreen and built-in 3G.
LG joins Samsung (which confirmed earlier this week that it was working on a smartwatch), Apple (which hasn’t confirmed anything, but which is reported to be working on it from various sources), and now Google (a new FT report claims it’s in on the action just this morning) as companies reportedly developing smartwatches. And of course Sony already actually shipped one, plus there are offerings available from Pebble and MetaWatch, among others.
In short, everyone has or is working on a smartwatch. And while the list is shorter for Google Glass, at this “non-commercialized” stage described in the Korea Times report today, you can bet your britches everyone else is working on that, too. We’ve already seen rumors about Microsoft, Sony and Apple developing Glass-type devices too, and now LG adds to that list.
The thing is this: if you’re a major electronics manufacturer, and at this point you haven’t assigned at least one guy with a lab coat or an engineering degree to look into both wrist- and head-mounted wearable tech, you’re already out of touch. For better or for worse, these wearables are happening, and at this point I’m more surprised not to hear that a company is working on those areas. I’m looking at you HTC and BlackBerry: where are your reports of clandestine research projects? This doesn’t count: