Motorola squashes hopes of imminent Moto 360 3rd gen release

Motorola is calling timeout on its smartwatch plans, saying it won't release a new wearable for Android Wear 2.0's arrival in early 2017, thus putting hopes of an impending Moto 360 3rd gen release to bed, at least for now.

The word comes from Shakil Barkat, head of global product development at Moto, according to The Verge. There just isn't "enough pull in the market" for Motorola Mobility, which is owned by Lenovo, to field a new smartwatch right now ... or in the foreseeable future.

"Wearables do not have broad enough appeal for us to continue to build on it year after year," he said. 

Motorola isn't putting the kibosh on smartwatches for good, though it doesn't sound like a wrist-worn device - such as the follow up to the Moto 360 - has a shot of making the company's product roster until the tech gets a big boost. 

Worn out

Barkat did note the firm still sees value on the wrist, and that smartwatches will eventually "provide value to consumers more than they do today," though their place on Motorola's annual road map is far from certain.

We asked Motorola to elaborate on its plans for smartwatches, but were told the company has nothing more to add.  

The decision by Motorola to skip Android Wear 2.0's release is a sizeable blow to both the operating system and smartwatches in general as the sector continues to sag. 

Google already pushed the upgraded OS's launch to next year, and several manufacturers, Motorola included, skipped releasing a new smartwatch for the 2016 holiday season. 

Apple, meanwhile, has seized the top ticker spot, though we're still missing official sales numbers for the Apple Watch Series 2

With interest in smartwatches waning, we can't say it's not wise of Motorola to take a step back. Seeing where it takes wearables next - the firm has said it sees promise in connected cellular watches - is something we'll just have to wait on.

Michelle Fitzsimmons

Michelle was previously a news editor at TechRadar, leading consumer tech news and reviews. Michelle is now a Content Strategist at Facebook.  A versatile, highly effective content writer and skilled editor with a keen eye for detail, Michelle is a collaborative problem solver and covered everything from smartwatches and microprocessors to VR and self-driving cars.