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LG Watch Sport: First impressions of the most feature-packed Android Wear device yet

Nearly two years after the original Android Wear announcement, Google is officially bringing version 2.0 to market. While there have been developer previews running on the LG Watch Urbane 2nd Edition and Huawei Watch, two new watches from LG will be the true standard bearers for the final release. Richard did the honors of discussing the LG Watch Style, which features a low-profile design. In this post, I'll be taking a look at its incredibly feature-packed big brother, the LG Watch Sport.

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Android Pay for Wear smartwatches doesn't work if your phone has an unlocked bootloader

After confirming with Google, we've learned that Android Pay for Android Wear will not function if your paired smartphone has an unlocked bootloader. This is not surprising, but it is disappointing nonetheless. This is despite the fact that we know the actual Wear app runs totally independently on the smartwatch, with the phone at most acting as a data pipe over Bluetooth. But the phone is integral in the actual setup process for Pay, and we suspect this may be where the limitation comes into play.

If you have an unlocked bootloader, the Android Pay app on your phone won't even let you add a card, and setup will fail, notifying you that your device is unsecured.

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You can't replace the LG Watch Sport's bands because they're full of antennas

The LG Watch Sport is the most fully-featured Android Wear device ever released. It has LTE, GPS, NFC, a heart rate sensor, barometer, Wi-Fi, and several other acronyms. What it does not have are replaceable watch bands - the bands of the Watch Sport are fixed in place by screws, weirdly.

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LG and Google's new smartwatches use crazy in-display ambient light sensors

Looking at LG's newest smartwatches, developed in collaboration with Google, you'll notice that both have round displays with no flat tires. This has typically meant the omission of one key feature in a smartwatch: an ambient light sensor. But LG has apparently cracked the code on this limitation, as both the Style and Sport have such sensors which allow them to adjust display brightness automatically.

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Android Pay for Android Wear is here, and this is how it works

Android Pay for Android Wear (which is a mouthful) is easily the most-requested feature in Google's wearable OS, and probably has been since Wear was first announced. It's taken a while - a long while, if you ask me - but it's finally here with the announcement of the LG Watch Sport. The Watch Sport is, for now, the only Android Wear smartwatch that supports Android Pay. No legacy devices are receiving the feature as far as we know.

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Google and LG announce the Watch Style and Sport, coming February 10th for $249 and $349, respectively

While not exactly the best-kept secret, Google and LG's collaborative smartwatch effort was fully announced today with the detailing of the Watch Style and Watch Sport. Pretty much every rumor you've heard from us and others to date was on point here, so a lot of this is going to be rehash, but we'll go through the motions.

First, the details you'll want if you're a prospective buyer: Both watches go on sale on February 10th in the United States. Both will be on the Google Store, where you'll be able to get the Watch Style for $249 ($279 for rose gold), and the Watch Sport - including a Google Store exclusive blue version - for $349.

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Source: The first new smartwatch with Android Pay, the LG Watch Sport, will cost $349

After revealing late last week that LG's Watch Style will come in at $249, today we can confirm via one of our trusted sources that its bigger, LTE-enabled brother will cost $100 more. The LG Watch Sport will have an MSRP of $349 here in the US, though it is unclear if color or band options could raise that price for certain configurations.

As a reminder, the Watch Sport brings a lot of features that the Watch Style will lack: LTE for true standalone functionality, NFC for Android Pay, GPS, a heart-rate monitor, a bigger, denser screen, and more buttons.

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[Update: Better shots] Google's LG-built Android Wear 2.0 watches appear to have leaked in low-res form

We're just a few weeks away from the release of Android Wear 2.0, and along with that we expect Google's new watches to arrive. Google has confirmed it's working on these devices, but little else. Following a spec-heavy report last week from VentureBeat, there's now a new piece of the puzzle. An image has leaked that purports to show the two watches, and they look very much like we'd expect them to look.

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VentureBeat: Google's smartwatches are built by LG, have digital crowns, will launch February 9th

In the most detailed report regarding Google's upcoming smartwatches yet, Evan Blass of VentureBeat says that LG will be the manufacturer of the devices, which are scheduled to launch on February 9th, the day he previously said Wear 2.0 would launch. Sales will commence the next day in the US, with international rollouts following throughout February and March. Blass confirms that our original renders of the watches are accurate.

They will be called the LG Watch Sport and Watch Style, meaning the names contain no Google branding. The Sport will have a 1.38" display, while the Style will be 1.2" across.

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