HTC is said to be prepping a smartwatch for debut in March at MWC alongside its new One M9 flagship smartphone. The new smartwatch will tap into Under Armour’s fitness tracking software service, according to Bloomberg, but little else is known at this time about its design or features. The M9, however, is said to remember the M8 in terms of sign and looks, but will also feature improved audio and camera technology, including Dolby 5.1 audio output.
The HTC smartwatch would be the first such wearable from HTC, which has so far stayed out of the race despite the participation of virtually every other major Android OEM. It isn’t specifically stated what platform will power HTC’s wearable, but Android Wear is a likely suspect, given that it has also been embraced by most of HTC’s competitors. Some, like Sony, have tried their own Android-based wearable OS, but ultimately they switched to Android Wear for their latest SmartWatch 3 product. HTC also doesn’t have its own homegrown alternative, as does Samsung with Tizen.
As for the HTC One M9, if these rumors prove true, it should be quite similar to the M8 from last year, which is good considering how well HTC did with that design. The M8 was a favorite for many critics in 2014 thanks to its strong, all-metal industrial design, as well as the smart Sense custom user interface on top of Android. The M9 is also said to have a more powerful eight-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor, alongside new UltraPixel-based camera tech and the aforementioned Dolby sound.
HTC’s press event for MWC takes place March 1, and that’s where we’ll see exactly what they’re announcing, hopefully complete with pricing and availability. If the company can bring the same design chops to bear on a smartwatch that it has used to create the best-looking Android phones available, then the wearable should indeed be something to watch out for.