Google Inc. tried to cash in on the buzz surrounding the Apple Watch event Monday by releasing an advertisement for its Android Wear smartwatch platform. Sales of watches running the company’s new operating system have so far been disappointing, but analysts say they could get a boost from Apple’s first foray into wearable devices.
Google’s new Android Wear advertisement plays up the company’s wide variety of devices, offered from several manufacturers including Motorola, LG, Samsung, Sony and Chinese newcomer Huawei. The Shenzhen-based manufacturer recently announced a luxury smartwatch with a round face, along with digital watch faces that make the device look like a high-end analog wristwatch.
“Six unique watches powered by Android. Be Together, not the same,” Google claims in the ad. The target is clear: Apple and its new Watch, which will only work with the iPhone and feature differing metals as well as bands. Google also plays up the different watch shapes offered to consumers with Android Wear.
“Round or square: wear what you want with #AndroidWear. Be together. #NotTheSame,” the search giant boasted on social networks sharing the ad.
Versions of the Apple Watch are the most expensive products the company has ever sold, with some 18-karat gold models priced at $17,000. Analysts expect the iPhone-maker’s smartwatch to dominate the category, with more than half of 2015 sales, but some claim Apple’s rising tide will lift all boats, increasing smartwatch sales for competing manufacturers as well.
The Huawei Watch is the most expensive Android Wear smartwatch to date, with a price tag topping $1,000. The least expensive Android Wear models include Samsung’s $199 Gear Live, while the least expensive Apple Watch will retail for $349 when it arrives on April 24.