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CES 2015: Sony makes big wearable push

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A multi-sensor, waterproof headset prototype and a new-look, sleek stainless steel SmartWatch 3 leads Sony’s biggest push yet in wearable technology, with a range of partnerships adding to its options.

At the International CES 2015 in Las Vegas this week, Sony introduced new products, partners and experiences to its SmartWear range. These include a stainless steel edition of SmartWatch 3, new Lifelog collaborations, and concept wearable devices, including a multi-sensor, waterproof headset prototype designed for optimising performance and providing real time insight on the running track.

Our approach to smart, wearable technology is based on the fundamentals of building depth and variety in user experiences, and providing choice with beautiful, functional products,” said Kaz Tajima, Senior Vice President, Head of UX Creative Design and Planning at Sony Mobile Communications. “The expansion of Lifelog – both in terms of its open API and our vision for new wearable concepts – will allow creative partners to integrate their apps and services to our platform – giving our users access to the richest, most varied wearable ecosystem.

At CES last year, Sony first showcased SmartBand SWR10 – a 24/7 wearable device: fully waterproof (rated IP58) despite its exposed microUSB port. A light, unobtrusive wearable that first featured Sony’s modular approach – the independent “core concept” – it allowed the technology to be worn in different colours and styles, to suit individual taste and personality.

Over the past year, Sony Mobile has worked with creatives and brands from across the lifestyle, fashion, and design spectrum to explore custom apparel, establishing collections for Sony SmartWear from the likes of Jack Vartanian, ALTEWAISOME, and Ted Baker – and most recently, the popular women’s lifestyle brand, ROXY.

SmartWatch 3 features a 1.6″ 320√ó320 TFT LCD Transflective display for visibility in bright sunlight, and is water protected, rated IP68 – it charges via a standard microUSB port.

­To further broaden the range of wearing styles available, Sony also unveiled a new SmartWatch 3 holder, allowing users and partners alike to customise SmartWatch 3 with any standard 24mm watch strap: available from the early part of 2015.

ESmartWatch 3 offers standalone functionality – featuring native music playback, intelligent sensor technology and inbuilt GPS sensor.

Golfshot and iFit are two developers already creating Android Wear experiences with SmartWatch 3’s standalone capability, for both performance on the course and track respectively – from January, every SmartWatch 3 user will have exclusive access to the premium Golfshot and iFit apps out of the box.

Sony also announced a new collaboration with Virgin Atlantic – to explore SmartWear initiatives together, to develop unique solutions using Sony’s SmartWear products to support operational activities and enhance the customer service experience for Virgin Atlantic customers. More news will follow over the coming months.

Downloadable from the Google Play Store, Lifelog is the popular Android app built to help set personal goals, monitor progress and make smarter choices about health, entertainment, and more.

Users can now access Lifelog through their browser at lifelog.sonymobile.com. It’s a new web interface that uses the open API functionality and latest HTML5 technologies, for a more visual experience. The site will work with any screen size, from smartphone to tablet to TV – via a Sony Entertainment Network account.

The new feature reflects Sony’s strategy to regularly bring new functionality and features to Lifelog.

Sony is teaming up with a variety of lifestyle and health apps, which will allow users, among other, to:

· Access Recipes on IFTTT

· Develop healthy habits with Habit Monster

· Use Withings Smart Body Analyzer and its other connected health devices, to monitor weight, BMI, and body fat.

Lifelog is inspiration through insight, and our first partners are helping us bring this to life in new ways,” said Yasuharu Nomura, Director of Experience Planning at Sony Mobile Communications. “We specifically designed the Lifelog platform on open principles, with capability that will help developers to build new experiences and access the Sony ecosystem like never before – it’s going to be an exciting year ahead.

Off the back of launching the software development kit, Sony is also sharing new applications for current prototype, SmartEyeglass Developer Edition, along with a new conceptual style, SmartEyeglass Attach! – a single lens display module for attaching to regular glasses, allowing developers to create applications for sport and performance.

Sony’s Smart B-Trainer prototype was also introduced – a waterproof all-in-one headset style device with multi-sensor capability specifically designed for runners. The current prototype features inbuilt memory – and will provide voice coaching, as well as music playback, intelligently suggesting the most suitable soundtrack to accompany a runner during a workout.

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