LG has unveiled another smart-watch to rival Apple’s impending new device.
The South Korean electronics company has unveiled two new models it will pit against its American rival, which it announced on the eve of the Mobile World Congress trade fair in Barcelona.
LG’s Watch Urbane will come as a basic version powered by Android Wear, and a high-end one with a 4G chip and a new operating system.
The higher end model can make and answer calls and send texts without needing to be linked to a phone.
The LG Watch Urbane LTE features a 1.3in plastic OLED display within a brushed stainless steel frame.
As well as being able to make calls, the watch also features a push-to-talk facility, essentially a walkie-talkie, which is compatible with other devices on the same data network.
Interestingly, the watch features a button that acts as a panic alarm. When the user presses the button, it calls a preset phone number and uses its built in GPS to send details of the wearer’s location.
The LG Watch Urbane also features an NFC chip for touch-and-go payments, IP67 dust and waterproofing certification, a heart rate monitor, barometer and nine-axis accelerometer.
The high-end model will be the first device to run LG’s Wearable Platform OS, which would also feature in other future products.
The basic model is slightly thinner and features a smaller capacity battery and lacks GPS and NFC functionality.
Despite this, some experts believe its cheaper price and use of Android Wear OS will see the watch as a popular alternative to Apple’s expected expensive smartwatch.
The LG Watch Urbane is the fourth smartwatch model it has unveiled in less than a year.
LG says its goal is to design a smartwatch that looks like a classic timepiece packed with modern features, and its latest model pays testament to that.
Despite its slick design, it still may well come off second best in the design stakes compared to Apple’s device, which is due to hit the market in April.
The Apple Watch has recently beat 2000 entries to win gold in the 2015 iF Design Awards, which is awarded every by the Germany-based iF International Forum Design.
Apple’s new device is spearheaded by designer Jony Ive.
The Apple Watch will come in three varieties, including the entry-level Sport model that will start at $349, and a high end Apple Watch Edition that could sell for as much as $4,999 and higher.