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Ready yourselves for a year of smartwatch leaks.

Case in point: this series of leaked images of what’s reportedly a prototype Motorola smartwatch. Unearthed by the folks at Android Police, sources say this smartwatch could have been an early version of the official “Google Watch” — had Google not sold off Motorola Mobility to Lenovo for $2.9 billion.

Now, reports claim Google is looking to LG for its smartwatch, which will likely debut at the Google I/O developer conference in June.

Motorola smartwatch prototype 2There’s not much to gather from these images, but they give us a sense of what Motorola is aiming for with its upcoming smartwatch. There’s a square display (it’s hard to tell if its monochrome or color), a simple rubber band, and buttons that hint at some useful features (an exercise mode and instant sound recording, for example). The design looks slightly more streamlined than Samsung’s original Galaxy Gear.

Android Police notes that this prototype was apparently something Motorola was developing last year, so its upcoming smartwatch may look completely different.

Motorola officially confirmed on Twitter yesterday that it’s working on a smartwatch for release this year.

After gadgets like the Galaxy Gear and Pebble introduced to the idea of smartwatches to the general public last year, this year the category is heating up with entries from Google, HTC, and potentially even Apple. Moreso than smartphones, though, we still need someone to convince us that we need smartwatches in our daily lives. Simply being able to view notifications from your phone isn’t enough — as I noted in my review of the Galaxy Gear. The ideal smartwatch is something that solves an actual problem for consumers.


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