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LG Will Debut a Rounded Smartwatch Next Week, as the Year of the Smartwatch Ticks On

Daniel Howley
Technology Editor
Yahoo Tech
Blank smartwatch face

Not content with having one smartwatch on the market, LG looks like it’s about ready to launch another watch next week, per a YouTube teaser video posted this week. Unlike its sibling, the recently released rectangular LG G Watch, this new watch will sport a more classic circular face.

LG doesn’t show much about the watch in its teaser, which the folks at Engadget have learned will be called the LG G Watch R, but it’s clear that the watch will have a rounded design and debut at the IFA technology conference in Berlin, which begins next week.

LG’s original G Watch runs Google’s Android Wear wearable operating system, so it’s likely that the G Watch R will do the same.

With its rounded design, the new watch looks to be a competitor for Motorola’s upcoming Moto 360. Like the G Watch R, the Moto 360 is an Android Wear watch that has a rounded display.

So far, the G Watch and Samsung’s Gear Live are the only Android Wear watches on the market. Both devices, however, received heavy criticism and were largely received as half-baked due to their limited features and small number of Android Wear apps.

The G Watch and Gear Live also took hits for their short battery lives. Competing watches, such as the Pebble Steel, can run for up to a week on a single charge, while the G Watch and Gear Live last just a day.

The timing for the G Watch R’s unveiling puts it on a collision course with the hotly anticipated Moto 360, which is expected to make its debut during a press event Sept. 4. Taiwanese tech giant Asus is also said to be working on an Android Wear watch that could be revealed next week.

Of course, the most highly anticipated smartwatch is Apple’s rumored iWatch, which could debut in early September during Apple’s iPhone 6 reveal or sometime in October.

The smartwatch market is seen as the next frontier for many tech companies, as the devices make it easier for wearers to receive notifications from their smartphones without having to pull their handsets out of their pockets.

The downside is that the majority of smartwatches require a Bluetooth connection with your smartphone, which not only runs down your phone’s battery, but also makes them virtually useless if you leave your smartphone at home.

Despite such imperfections, there’s still something cool about being able to check the Internet from a supercomputer on your wrist. In other words, we’re excited to see what LG has to offer.

Email Daniel at dhowley@yahoo-inc.com; follow him on Twitter at @DanielHowley or on Google+ here.