here is a global landscape that's still buying smartphones like crazy

July 05 [Fri], 2013, 18:05
Sony's SmartWatch 2, which pairs with an Android smartphone, can be personalized with more dedicated apps than any other smartwatch, the company said.

It can take photos remotely, as well as manage emails and text messages. It is water- and dust-resistant, just like its predecessor.

What's new is the NFC capability, a higher-resolution screen, longer battery life, standalone watch functionality and a variety of additional apps -- many of which are preloaded -- that have emerged since the last SmartWatch was introduced in April of 2012.

The SmartWatch 2 will be available worldwide from September. Pricing was not disclosed, but its predecessor cost US$150.
There might be some method in Sony's madness -- after all, this is the company whose late cofounder and chairman Akita Morita declared in his autobiography, Made in Japan, that Sony's plan was to lead the public with new products rather than ask them what kind of products they want.

"The public does not know what is possible but we do," he wrote.

The SmartWatch "is one of the potential interfaces for the digital home," said Maribel Lopez, principal analyst at Lopez Research. "I believe Sony looks at this as part of the control system for your digital life."

That digital life is the latest battleground for consumer electronics manufacturers such as Sony and Apple, which are locked in a battle for the home entertainment center.

As for the Xperia Z Ultra, "there is a global landscape that's still buying smartphones like crazy," Lopez pointed out. "There are many levers Sony can pull -- pricing, distribution, for example -- to be successful
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