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Asus Could Develop Smartwatch Without Android Wear

Asus Could Develop Smartwatch Without Android WearFocus Taiwan has reported Asus CEO Jerry Shen has confirmed that Asus will use Android Wear in one of its second generation ZenWatch models before investigating the potential of a second operating system.

“The major concern is about saving power,” Shen told Focus Taiwan.  

“We will continue to work with Google on Android Wear, and we will have another (smartwatch) that is not based on Android Wear and features a longer battery life.”

The news follows the recent release of Canalys figures revealing Android Wear got off to something of a slow start in 2014.

Canalys found that over 720,000 Android Wear devices shipped in 2014 out of a total of 4.6 million smart wearable bands.

The challenge of providing improved battery life is a key consideration for manufacturers as the next wave of smartwatches now hit the market, however increased battery life may come at the expense of reduced power and features.

The Apple Watch, expected to be released in the first half of the year, is expected to promote significant growth in the smart band market, with Canalys analyst Daniel Matte noting Apple “made the right decisions with its WatchKit software development kit to maximise battery life for the platform”.

Asus chairman Jonney Shih had previously indicated the company is focused on providing improved battery life in future smartwatch releases.

“The ZenWatch is defined by us as a companion to a smartphone, and we think it still has a lot of room for improvement,” the Taipei Times reported Shih as stating towards the end of January this year.

“As a companion device, its central processing unit and operating system should be more simplified than the current version, so that I can use it for up to seven days on one charge, rather than for just two days.”