Confusingly, the LG Watch Urbane LTE doesn't run Android Wear

LG Watch Urbane LTE is confusingly not running Android Wear

LG has decided that smartwatches weren't hard enough to understand, so has launched the Watch Urbane LTE… without Android Wear.

Instead, it'll run on LG's own 'Wearable Platform', which is likely to be a mutant version of the WebOS system it purchased from HP. It's also going hard on the improved design front again, like the LG watch Urbane released a few days ago, trying to fool your friends into thinking it's a real life watch.

The screen is similar in size to LG's Android Wear range, with a 1.3-inch OLED screen plus a 320x320 resolution, which gives a 245ppi sharpness.

The big change comes with the ability to make and receive calls on your wrist, as well as get 4G data to the device without a phone tethered.

There's a heart rate monitor on the back, and it's IP67 rated for workouts in the wet… although sadly there's no GPS involved so it still can't work properly when out running.

Power to me, power to you

The battery expansion is interesting, as compared to the 410mAh power pack on the LG G Watch R, the Urbane is coming with a 700mAh unit, and combined with its proprietary platform could result in multiple days of battery life compared to the short term time away from the charger today.

Getting into the specs and, well, it's very similar to Android Wear, with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 1.2GHz CPU, 1GB of RAM, 4GB of internal memory and Bluetooth 4.0 and NFC.

LG is talking heavily about the fact you'll be able to use the watch for mobile payments thanks to the beepy NFC tech, as well as Push To Talk allowing you to use the watch as a walkie talkie. The sad thing is both will have to be enabled in your region, whether your network carrier or bank, so it probably won't work out of the box.

We've still not got news on when the LG Watch Urbane LTE will be released – or if it will be available outside of South Korea – but it certainly won't be cheap when it does step blinking into the light.

Gareth Beavis
Formerly Global Editor in Chief

Gareth has been part of the consumer technology world in a career spanning three decades. He started life as a staff writer on the fledgling TechRadar, and has grown with the site (primarily as phones, tablets and wearables editor) until becoming Global Editor in Chief in 2018. Gareth has written over 4,000 articles for TechRadar, has contributed expert insight to a number of other publications, chaired panels on zeitgeist technologies, presented at the Gadget Show Live as well as representing the brand on TV and radio for multiple channels including Sky, BBC, ITV and Al-Jazeera. Passionate about fitness, he can bore anyone rigid about stress management, sleep tracking, heart rate variance as well as bemoaning something about the latest iPhone, Galaxy or OLED TV.