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Sony: we didn't want to make a round smartwatch

Sony: we didn't want to make a round smartwatch
It's still about power over form for Sony
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Sony's new Smartwatch 3 could have been created to rival the LG G Watch R and Moto 360, but the brand decided against it.

Speaking at the launch of the new product, Calum MacDougall, Director of Product Marketing Programme, at Sony Mobile Communications, told us that while the brand did look at a round face for the new wearable, it decided that a square screen offered a better experience.

"We felt in the design language [for the SmartWatch 3], that the choice we made with a square screen is the right one, particularly as a smartwatch."

Two options

"It's also a second screen for Lifelog, and gives this device more flexibility. We looked at a round screen, but this [design] offers the best user experience."

While it seems to be that round screens are the new option most are looking for in terms of aesthetic pleasure on today's smartwatches, companies like Sony still believe that the square screen offers a larger and more expansive experience for using it as a touchscreen.

It raises an interesting question of what the smartwatch's primary function is: should it be pleasing on the eye first, mimicking an actual watch which is as much a fashion accessory as a tool, or a second screen to work alongside your phone?

Either way, Sony's new Smartwatch 3 is one of the more powerful wrist-based devices with GPS onboard too (something the rivals haven't added in yet) so will go at least some way to providing an answer as to what people are after.


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.