LG has just showed its new hand in the smartwatch market by unveiling the round G Watch R just days before IFA 2014 commences. But while it may have stolen the spotlight from the equally round Moto 360, LG's German outfit has revealed the Android Wear device's biggest, and perhaps only, flaw: it's price.
The G Watch R is practically the G Watch encased in a more stylish circular frame. You will enjoy the same hardware and same Android Wear features, including the 1.2 GHz Snapdragon 400, 512 MB of RAM, 4 GB of storage, and an Ingress Protection (IP) rating of IP67. But it also adds just a bit more, with a higher 410 mAh battery and, for the first time, a heartrate monitor. Unlike the Moto 360, however, LG utilizes the whole surface of the 1.3-inch 320x320 Plastic OLED (P-OLED) display, giving it a much bigger effective area to utilize.
But do those improvements, as well as the round watch face, warrant a drastic increase in price? Unlike the global announcement, LG Germany has revealed that the SRP for the G Watch R stands at 299 euros. Directly converted, that's around $395. In contrast, the LG G Watch only costs $229, and that is already higher than the Samsung Gear Live's $199. But even if it were to surprisingly only cost $299 in the US, that is still quite a price jump.
That said, we still don't know the Moto 360's price tag, or its features for that matter. Motorola's first Android Wear smartwatch might win against the LG in that category only. Plus wireless charging, if that indeed comes to pass. A bigger battery, a heartrate sensor, and a circular face are definitely enticing new features that would make you want to reach out for a LG G Watch R, but are you also willing to pay the price for it? Let's find out when come face to watch face at IFA 2014 next week.