IFA 2014: Asus ZenWatch, Team Shih’s first Android Wear smartwatch gets real

IFA 2014: Asus ZenWatch, Team Shih’s first Android Wear smartwatch gets realWe all knew it was coming, and BOOM! IFA 2014 is the place where Shih gets real (see what I did there?).

Taiwanese manufacturer Asus has lifted the lid on its first Android Wear smartwatch, the appropriately named ZenWatch. It’s notable for being a) one of the most affordable pieces of Android Wear kit to date, and b) pretty sexy.

Starting with Asus ZenWatch price, well, it’s not quite as cheap as we were led to believe. In reality, the rumoured “between $99 and $149” translates as €199, or roughly £160 in our money (more on the UK price below).

For that, you’re getting a 1.63in curved “2.5D” rectangular display with Gorilla Glass 3, paired with an Italian-made leather strap and quick-release clasp. Nice. And the 320 x 320 resolution means you’re treating your eyeballs to an impressive 278PPI (pixels per inch), more than enough for a relatively small smartwatch.

Other Asus ZenWatch features include a quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 processor (which capably captains the Moto G, incidentally), choice of 100+ watch faces, and a “wellness manager” that tracks steps taken, calories burned, and heart rate – among other health-related stats.

Pairing with an Android phone – that’s any Android phone, not just Asus’ weird hybrid thingies – you can cover the ZenWatch to silence incoming calls, automatically unlock your handset, and take advantage of Find My Phone to – you guessed it – find your phone should you misplace it.

Fancy it? We're told the Asus ZenWatch should arrive in plenty of time for Christmas, hopefully priced south of £200.

Meanwhile, we’ve more Asus ZenWatch news over on sister site Wareable, and they’ll be going hands-on as soon as. Paul, I'll take one if you can sneak out unnoticed.

Read more about: Android

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