Uh oh. The word cancel is never one that OEMs want to use when referring to a brand new product launch. Unfortunately, that is exactly what LG said today regarding launch of the brand new LG Watch Urbane 2nd Edition LTE. The odd thing about canceling the launch of this watch is that it is already on sale at both AT&T and Verizon. In addition, quite a few people have already purchased the watch, myself included.
According to sources at The Verge, the AT&T is offering refunds to customers that purchased the device. The cancelation is apparently due to a unnamed hardware issue which LG says impacts the day to day performance of the watch. Verizon has also halted preorders of the device and is refunding previous preorders at this time.
At this point, it seems pretty unlikely the watch will be relaunched. If this were a software issue, it wouldn’t be a big deal, but recalling all devices and remanufacturing them will be a huge pain for LG. The question remains, what could the hardware issue be? In my time with the device I haven’t noticed any serious battery life or overheating issues. The main issues I’ve noticed are the following:
- Poor LTE network switching. My watch has been on HSPA+ most of the time I’ve had it. When the watch goes from LTE to HSPA+, it never comes back to LTE unless I manually switch cellular off and then back on. Of course, this could be particular to AT&T, my local area, and is also likely something that could be fixed with software updates.
- Bluetooth calling doesn’t work from watch. You can only listen to music via bluetooth, no calls. Also, you cannot listen to music via the speaker…only make calls. Pretty lame, but also something that could likely be fixed via a software update.
- GPS doesn’t work with all apps. You can’t get navigation from Maps when using stand-alone mode. This is also pretty lame, but also easily fixable in a software update.
Those are the only problems I’ve noticed, besides the watch being huge in size. None of them seem like hardware issues, especially ones big enough for a recall. I’ll be interested to see what comes out in the next few days as the primary reason. In the meantime, I hope this watch isn’t giving me wrist-cancer until I return it to AT&T. Let me know your thoughts on this interesting cancelation by LG. Did anyone buy the watch and have a severe hardware failure? Let me know in the comments!
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