Motorola announced Wednesday that the Moto 360 watch would be the grand prize in a design contest. The manufacturer gave the unreleased wearable a $249 promotional value in the for the sake of the contest, and several sites are running with the information as a hint to the device's retail price.
Motorola quickly added an asterisk to the terms and conditions of the contest as the story began picking up steam. "ARV for unreleased products is furnished for tax purposes. Actual suggested retail price at launch may be substantially different," Motorola said in the updated terms and conditions. Those hoping to pick up the Moto 360 might need to plan on spending more than $250 when it becomes available for purchase this summer.
"Thanks for your excitement around our Moto 360 Design Face-Off contest,” the company said in a statement. “We want to make clear that the 'approximate retail value' (ARV) indicated in our rules is included for tax purposes only and should not be interpreted as the suggested retail price of the Moto 360 when it becomes available for purchase."
The unique round design of the Moto 360’s watch face, coupled with the use of materials like leather and steel for its bands instead of the rubber or plastic found on most of its competitors, has many Android users eagerly anticipating its release. The lead designer of the Moto 360, Jim Wicks, said that fitting the necessary hardware into a round design was a “scary” feat for its engineers.
So far, Motorola Mobility has remained tight-lipped about the exact date and price for the smartwatch, only confiming this summer as a release date, and sending mixed messages on how much it will cost. The manufacturer has also kept mum on details of the Moto 360’s specs, but Motorola will most likely lean towards low-powered hardware to maximize battery life, which it has said was imperative to offering a wearable that consumers would enjoy.
The International Business Times estimates a release date late in summer for the Moto 360. Motorola released the well-received Moto X phone in August of 2013, and will likely follow with the expected Moto X+1 this August, as most manufacturers stick to a regular, annual release cycle for smartphones. LG has said it would release the “first Android Wear” device this summer, meaning the G Watch will likely arrive sometime in June, perhaps to coincide with the annual developer conference Google I/O. Therefore, Motorola will most likely start selling the Moto 360 later in July, giving the smartwatch a month to build steam before the releases of the Moto X+1.