Sony has two new wearables coming at you this fall. At IFA in Berlin, we’ve gotten a look at the SmartBand Talk and SmartWatch 3, two wrist-worn devices that will work in tandem with Sony’s Lifelog app.
Neither of the new devices are standalone, like what we recently saw with the Samsung Gear S. The SmartBand Talk is primarily a fitness tracker, although it does have a limited capacity to communicate with your smartphone. Thanks to Bluetooth 4.0 LE and NFC connectivity, you can use it to field calls coming in to your smartphone, as well as issue voice commands to your smartphone. I say limited because while battery life in general is decent at three days, talk time is pretty short, at one hour.
The SmartBand Talk is also a fitness tracker, with stats you can view on the 1.4″ e-paper display or on Sony’s Lifelog app, which is a place to store not only fitness stats, but life memories and communications logs. The device is waterproof (rater IP68), and will come in black or white.
The SmartWatch 3 will offer a more robust wearable experience, thanks to a 1.6″ 320×320 TFT capacitive touch display. It runs Android Wear, Google’s OS designed for wearables, which means you’ll be able to get notifications, reminders, weather updates, and contextual information like flight times at the airport. The watch features NFC and Bluetooth 4.0 LE connectivity so you can connect it to a smartphone. And, like the SmartBand above, the SmartWatch 3 is IP68 waterproof. There’s also 4 GB of internal storage you can use to store music playlists for offline use.
Voice, however, seems to be less of a feature for the SmartWatch 3. It seems like you’ll still be able to issue voice commands through Android Wear, but there’s no mention of being able to use the watch to send or receive calls. It also sounds like it’ll be more limited as a fitness tracker compared to other wearables—you can truck runs using the built-in GPS, but there’s no mention of any sensors to record steps taken, heart rate, or any other standard fitness tracker fare.
Battery life on the SmartWatch 3 will be anywhere between two and four days, depending on usage habits. When the device first hits stores, you’ll be able to get it in black or lime, but white and pink bands are planned for the near future.
The SmartWatch 3 goes for a very simple, if nondescript, look. The plastic band is about as plain as it gets. The SmartBand Talk is a little more fashionable, going for a thin, sleek look that has become the norm for fitness trackers. The e-paper display looks great, though, and might be enough to set the SmartBand Talk apart from the pack for you.
Both wearables will hit stores sometime this fall. The SmartBand Talk will retail for €160, and will eventually be available in red, blue, pink, and lime. Bands can be purchased in packs of two for €25. The SmartWatch 3 will retail for €230, with each extra band coming in at €25. Release dates and prices for North America are as of yet unknown.