Motorola gives up on smartwatches, for now

Posted on Dec 2 2016 - 12:00pm by Huzoor Bux



Moto 360, version 2, came out in 2015.

Image: Jhila Farzaneh/Mashable

Motorola’s Moto 360 was the first Android Wear smartwatch with a circular design — a trait later taken up by most Android smartwatches — pushing the company to the forefront of the wearables market. However, it now appears we won’t see a new smartwatch under the Moto brand anytime soon. 

Lenovo, the parent company of Motorola, told The Verge that it’s not planning to release a Moto smartwatch in time for the next major version of Google’s smartwatch platform, Android Wear 2. 

According to Shakil Barkat, head of global product development at Moto, the company doesn’t “see enough pull in the market” to launch a new smartwatch. He did leave open the possibility of a Moto smartwatch at a later date, saying that customers might eventually start valuing gadgets on their wrists more than they do today. 

The smartwatch market has shrunk.

The last Moto smartwatch out was version 2 of Moto 360, which came out in Oct. 2015. 

Other gadget makers, including LG and Huawei, previously said they do not plan to launch a new smartwatch in 2016. Android Wear 2 is slated to arrive in early 2017, and it’s reasonable to expect the new version of the OS will coincide with some hardware announcements. 

The news comes hot on the heels of reports that Fitbit is buying Pebble, mostly for its technology and intellectual property, which probably means the end of Pebble smartwatches. According to an IDC report from Oct. 2016, the smartwatch market has shrunk a hefty 51.6 percent in the third quarter of 2016 compared to the same period last year. 



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