LG is ready to reveal on centerstage the upgraded LTE version of its smartwatch, the Watch Urbane, which brings support for mobile payments, at the upcoming Mobile World Congress (MWC) in March.
The good news is that Watch Urbane LTE will be able to make mobile payments on its own without the need to pair to a smartphone. The LG smartwatch will also be the first to tout an LTE radio, according to the company.
With its leather strap and round dial, the Watch Urbane LTE is quite stellar looking. The LG smartwatch also wins brownie points for its ability to make Voice over LTE (VoLTE) calls, so users can speak via the smartwatch even in the absence of their smartphones. This feature was notably absent in the original Watch Urbane.
The device also packs in the one-touch emergency call capability and houses an "LTE walkie-talkie" functionality, which enables several people wearing the watch to communicate via a chatroom real time. Users can also share their location.
Thanks to the NFC chip, the Watch Urbane LTE is able to make mobile payments just like the Apple Watch. The mobile wallet feature may receive a warm welcome from users who would want to make use of the functionality to purchase items -- all by simply tapping their NFC-enabled smartwatch against an NFC-compatible transaction device to make the payment.
The LTE functionality is not the only feature that sets the new watch apart from Watch Urban. The Watch Urban LTE model has three buttons on the side, compared to the Watch Urbane's single button. These three buttons are basically for quick settings and navigation.
The Watch Urbane LTE also has the ability to perform foreign language translation through voice recognition.
LG has also bolstered the lifespan of the LTE variant's battery by endowing it with a 700mAh battery vis-à-vis the Watch Urbane's 410mAh one. This battery offers 1.7 times greater support than that of Watch Urbane's.
The Watch Urbane LTE also houses a Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 processor, clocked at 1.2GHz. The metal body and leather straps of the water-resistant smartwatch are both rust- and scratch-proof.
LG has revealed that the Watch Urbane LTE will not run on Android Wear like the original, but a platform from LG. However, the LTE variant will not be a webOS device.
The LG Watch Urbane LTE is slated to make its debut at the MWC 2015, which kicks off in Barcelona, Spain on Mar. 2.