Asus ZenWatch brings its own sense of style and features to Android Wear

ASUS ZenWatch-03

Asus officially introduced the ZenWatch, its first Android Wear smartwatch, on Wednesday. The digital timepiece debuted at an Asus press event in Berlin during the IFA show and looks much like what we expected from leaked information over the past few weeks. Image leaks, however, don’t tell the whole story: It’s clear Asus has spent some time adding its own features to this Android Wear device.

ASUS ZenWatch-02

As far as looks go, the Asus ZenWatch appears pretty stylish to me. It has a curved 1.63-inch touch display with 320 x 320 resolution surrounded by stainless steel. The watch comes with a leather band and quick-release clasp; of course, you can swap out the band, as the ZenWatch accepts any 22-millimeter strap. All in all, this looks more like a watch than a device.

Inside is a familiar package, as the ZenWatch has the same components as some other Google Android Wear smartwatches: A 1.2 GHz Snapdragon 400 chip, 512 MB of memory, 4 GB of storage, a microphone, 9-axis accelerometer and heart-rate monitor. The latter two sensors work with a companion Asus ZenUI Wellness app to track steps, calories, activity duration, level of exercise and relaxation.

That’s just the first bit of software that Asus put some effort into as an attempt to stand out from the Android Wear crowd. Aside from its own included watch faces, Asus is presenting the ZenWatch as a strong companion to a Bluetooth-connected phone with these features: Watch Unlock, Tap Tap (a way to execute a custom task with a tap), Remote Camera, Cover to Mute, Find My Phone and Presentation Control.

In Europe, the Asus ZenWatch will cost €199. No U.S. pricing was announced, nor did Asus specify an availability date.

This post was updated at 7:17am to correct the memory capacity.

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