Qualcomm says a sports smartwatch with the Snapdragon Wear 3100’s sports mode is still coming
Smartwatches started out with a ton of attention with many OEMs jumping on board to support the brand new industry. As time went on though, sales started to slump and that led to multiple companies dropping out of the smartwatch market entirely. It’s still being held up thanks to a handful of OEMs, but many feel the overall market has stagnated and the lack of innovation when it comes to silicon (which is somewhat tied to battery life). We talked about the Qualcomm Snapdragon Wear 3100 wearable SoC late last year and the company says a smartwatch that utilizes its Sports Mode feature is still in the works.
A number of people who are not happy with how the Wear OS market turned out actually blame Qualcomm. It’s been said that a dedicated chip for smartwatches was too late to the market and Qualcomm’s latest attempts haven’t kickstarted the industry as many had hoped. The Snapdragon Wear 3100 SoC has a feature that was supposed to help build this industry, an industry that is said to double by 2021. It’s called Sports Mode and we still haven’t seen a Wear OS device use it.
When the chipset was announced, Qualcomm was very proud of this feature saying it would decrease overall battery life when a person is physically active for an extended period of time. This is really where Wear OS ends up lagging behind the competition. If you’re just lying around all day then the battery life of any smartwatch will last you longer than most. It’s when you are being physically active for a long time that really begins to drain the battery. In these cases, Sports Mode will kick in on the Snapdragon Wear 3100 chip offload the work onto the new co-processor.
During Qualcomm’s initial Snapdragon Wear 3100 announcement we were told that this new Sports Mode feature would be made available in a “future release” of a smartwatch from a “major sports brand.” However, there wasn’t any timeline given and we have yet to see the feature used in any smartwatch that is currently on the market. The folks over at Droid-Life reached out to Qualcomm for an update on this smartwatch that would feature Sports Mode and they were told the company will still on track with the sports brand.