We already have some potentially awesome smartwatches to look forward to by the end of the year – including the Google Pixel Watch – and it seems we can add one more to the list, courtesy of Mobvoi and its TicWatch brand.
Mobvoi apparently has emailed (opens in new tab) certain customers about a new device, as seen by 9to5Google (opens in new tab), and all signs point to a flagship smartwatch powered by Wear OS being on the way. No name is given, but it is likely to be the TicWatch Pro 4.
We were pretty excited about the TicWatch Pro 3 that launched in 2020 and the Ultra version that followed in 2021. We’ve also seen cheaper TicWatch wearables hit the market, but the next one will likely be positioned at the pricier end of the spectrum.
Mobvoi mentions a “flagship” watch with “premium design” in its email. There are also hints of long battery life, support for NFC payments and GPS, and IP68 water protection. That sounds like a pretty high-end smartwatch to us.
The release also mentions being able to monitor irregular heartbeat (atrial fibrillation) and stress levels – these features are also present on the TicWatch Pro 3 Ultra, but Mobvoi hints that the new model will offer further improvements.
As we heard at Google IO 2022, there’s a new dynamic behind the Wear OS platform and devices that support it. It appears that Mobvoi wants to be a part of this, with the email stating that the product in question is “close to release”.
Analysis: Fresh start for Wear OS
Wear OS, formerly known as Android Wear, is the smartwatch operating system that Google developed to take on the mighty Apple Watch – and it’s fair to say that devices running the software have improved in recent years had a mixed fate.
It was really only Mobvoi, with their TicWatch brand, and Fossil, with their impressive range of smartwatches, that flew the Wear OS flag. Meanwhile, the Apple Watch has been gaining strength with each passing year.
However, the signs for the future are promising. Google has been investing more time and effort into Wear OS lately, while Samsung has transitioned its own watches to the platform – with the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 and Watch 5 Pro now just around the corner.
Then comes the Google Pixel Watch later this year. Add to that whatever the new TicWatch model is, and we’re talking serious competition for the Apple Watch by the end of 2022.
- The best Wear OS smartwatches you can buy right now
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