LG Watch Urbane LTE preview: Android Wear not missed in this heavy hitter

MWC 2015: No Android Wear in sight but we're not sure that's a bad thing
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Variety is the spice of life. That's obviously the thinking at LG HQ as, not content with unleashing the super stylish Android Wear-running LG Watch Urbane, the Korean tech giant also revealed an entirely different LTE smartwatch too.

The LG Watch Urbane LTE was on show for the first time over in Barcelona at MWC 2015 and Wareable was on hand to take a look.

Update: When will your smartwatch get Android Wear 2.0

We'll deliver our full review after a proper testing period but, in the meantime, read on for our early thoughts.

LG Watch Urbane: Design


It's heavy. So heavy. Weighing 115g, it's more than double the weight some of the Android Wear brigade. It's a chunky block of metal packing no fewer than three buttons. Yep, three! That's probably one too many as the bottom one doesn't do a great deal.

Essential reading: Best smartwatch 2015 round-up

But that extra bulk isn't a bad thing. Luxury watches are meant to feel heavy and, given the Urbane LTE plays nicely with the latest Audi sports cars, it's definitely intended to be a luxury product.

It feels reassuringly solid and, worn side by side with its Android Wear brethren, feels a lot more manly.

In fact, apart from the name there's not a great deal that the two Urbane models have in common. They look pretty different and, what's more, they play pretty differently too.

That's because the LG Watch Urbane LTE shuns Android Wear in favour of a forked webOS experience. Don't worry, it's not a Palm Pre for your wrist; the interface has only the slightest hint of being webOS powered.

LG Watch Urbane: Features

Unlike Android Wear, the UI encourages users to explore and find apps. This is easily done as a press of the middle button brings up the app menu – a scrollable wheel of icons that feels as natural a smartphone setup as we've come across.

The hardware packed into the Urbane LTE is substantial to say the least. It packs a quad-core Qualcomm processor, 1GB of RAM, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS and, of course LTE cellular connectivity.

The latter means you'll be able to, just as with the Samsung Gear S, use the Urbane LTE as a standalone device, complete with full calling functionality. You won't, of course, no one will – but the option is there.

The display is bright and vibrant – it's the same 1.3-inch P-OLED panel found on the LG G Watch R.

LG Watch Urbane: Early verdict


The LG Watch Urbane LTE is a funny one because on the one hand, it's exciting due to its uniqueness but on the other, it could end up stranded because of its uniqueness.

Android Wear has hundreds of apps, Samsung's Tizen apparently boasts over 1,000 and there's already a strong dev community knocking up exciting apps for the Apple Watch.

If this is the first LG webOS(ish) smartwatch of many then great. But we've got a sneaky feeling it's a glorified Audi advert. Time will tell.

TAGGED Smartwatches

How we test

Paul Lamkin


Wareable Media Group co-CEO Paul launched Wareable with James Stables in 2014, after working for a variety of the UK's biggest and best consumer tech publications including Pocket-lint, Forbes, Electric Pig, Tech Digest, What Laptop, T3 and has been a judge for the TechRadar Awards. 

Prior to founding Wareable, and subsequently The Ambient, he was the senior editor of MSN Tech and has written for a range of publications.

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