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Why ASUS is building new smartwatch without Android Wear

by Todd Haselton | February 16, 2015February 16, 2015 12:00 pm EST

ASUS ZenWatch-03

The ASUS ZenWatch is one of the finer-looking Android Wear smartwatches available right now, but it’s impacted by one major issue that seems to affect all Android Wear devices to some degree: battery life. You’ll be lucky to get more than two days on some models, though most, in my experience, barely get me through more than a full day of use. That’s a problem in the face of Pebble and other gadgets that run longer and, if early Android Wear sales are any indication, perhaps it’s a suggestion that consumers want something that can last a bit longer than one day.

ASUS is ready to tackle that problem, according to statements made by CEO Jerry Shen to Focus Taiwan. The company will create a smartwatch that doesn’t run Android Wear but that will hopefully offer longer battery life than its current ZenWatch product. “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 longer battery life,” Shen explained, noting that the goal is a device with a week of battery life, according to Focus Taiwan. “The major concern is about saving power.” ASUS is currently considering a low-cost and low-power MediaTek processor that might help save power. The company’s ZenWatch employs a Snapdragon 400 processor.

Shen didn’t provide a timeframe for when we might expect the new ASUS smartwatch to launch, but considering it’s still trying to pick out a processor, it’s probably not going to happen immediately.

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Todd Haselton

Todd Haselton has been writing professionally since 2006 during his undergraduate days at Lehigh University. He started out as an intern with...