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Lenovo Magic Watch: a smartwatch with a difference

Barry Collins
28 May 2015
Lenovo Magic Watch
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Lenovo unveils a dual-display smartwatch, with a secondary screen that looks far bigger than it actually is

Why have only one screen on your smartphone when you could have two? That's the prospect offered by the Lenovo Magic Watch, which has a secondary display built into the watch strap.

That second screen is no ordinary LCD, either. It uses a patented Light Guide Optimal Element that makes the screen look much larger than it actually is when viewed head-on. Lenovo says this effectively creates a display that's 20 times the size of a normal smartwatch screen, allowing users to view digital photos and perform other tasks that are tricky or impossible on a tiny LCD display.

As you can see in the video below, using the second screen is a little awkward. The presenter has to raise the watch to within a couple of inches of his face to see the display, because it has a viewing angle of only 30 degrees. This, at least, has the benefit of preventing the person on the Tube seat next to you from seeing your photos.

Lenovo demonstrated the Magic Watch at its Tech World conference in Beijing, but it's currently only at the prototype stage and doesn't have a target release date. One challenge Lenovo will almost certainly be struggling to overcome is keeping the two-screen watch running past lunchtime. Most single-screen Android smartwatches barely last a day, and fitting larger batteries isn't a practical option.

The Magic Watch is just one of the devices Lenovo has unveiled in Beijing. It's also been showing off a smartphone with a built-in projector, similar to those we've seen in the past from Samsung. The company has also unveiled a puck-shaped media streamer called the Lenovo Cast.

 

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