The Google smart-watch could debut at I/O this June, might have plastic band and color LCD display
For the first time since last October, we are treated to a another course of rumors about the Google smart-watch. According to insiders at Mountain View, the smart-watch will be showcased at Google's I/O event this June. This is the expo which the company hosts to announce its latest hardware and software developments, and connect with the tech community. Although an earlier release was considered, the watch team "believes" the premiere will be pushed to June. It seems the device needs more time for polishing before it's market-ready.
Before the June reveal, Google could announce a smartwatch-centric variant of Android in March. This stripped-down version will rely mostly on Google Now's voice recognition and search capabilities, which sounds similar to how Google Glass operates now. This announcement is likely to happen in a blog-post.
Reportedly, LG will be producing the rumored device. This assumes a continuation of the Nexus device model, in which manufacturing is handed to a Google hardware partner. Having produced the successful Nexus 4 and Nexus 5, LG is arguably one of Google's most trusted partners. All this also makes the smart-watch a candidate to join the Nexus lineup, appearing for sale in the Google Play Store.
Google's smart-watch is said to have a plastic band and a full-color LCD display that "looks like a cheap smartphone". This statement is open to interpretation, but we naturally associate it with a low pixel density and unspectacular viewing angles. The watch pairs with Android smartphones, but there is no mention of iOS, WP8, or other mobile platform support. The device shows notifications and Google Now alerts, but cannot run 3rd-party apps at this point.
This sure sounds surprising, considering Google's efforts to foster a developer community long before launching Glass - a considerably riskier product – to the mass-market. However, developers should be able to code for the smart-watch following future updates, or after root-ing their way to freedom. It would be very non-Google to lock the device down.
There is no concrete term for release currently, but at this point, the smart-watch's existence is a "public secret". Allegedly, working prototypes are being tested under high confidentiality in a "Google building", and are unable to be taken outside at all. One of the early prototypes had a metal band, square face, and displayed an animated background which blended gradient colors. We are also told that designers from the Android team have been working on the smart-watch as well.
All of this information is sourced straight from the rumor mill, so better keep an open mind in the months until June. Also, just to clarify, the thumbnail picture is a designer concept.