Consumers in the U.S., Mexico, U.K., France and Germany can initially use Moto Maker to customize their watches.
Another big change is the introduction of the Moto 360 Sport, which was developed to let users go on a run without having to bring their smartphone. The smartwatch has a silicon unibody design, onboard GPS and can play music.
Motorola has also developed a new screen technology for the Sport called AnyLight, which is an LCD display that combines a traditional backlit transmissive screen with a front-lit reflective technology. The smartwatch can switch between the two as lighting conditions change, for example like when walking out of a dark movie theater to a street during the day. The drawback is that the screen isn’t as bright as the screen on the main models, Motorola said.
On the software side, Motorola added what it calls live dials. They are visible on the watch face, and show information such as weather and steps taken. Motorola is also working with third-party app developers, including Shazam, which has developed a live dial. The aim is to provide the user with more information upfront instead of having to flick through the user interface.
With the exception of the Sport model, the new models will start shipping in September and are now available for pre-order. Prices range from US$299 to about $429. The Sport will also cost $299, but Motorola didn’t reveal when it will ship.
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