Feb, 15 2011

The Sony Ericsson LiveView is already available in several regions, but without a US release I had not seen the nifty little accessory in the flesh…or plastic, rather.  When I stumbled upon it at Sony Ericsson’s booth at MWC I couldn’t pass up the chance to check it out. Good news was learned, too. The LiveView is a mere few weeks away from a US and Canadian release.

Initially believing the LiveView only worked with Sony Ericsson devices, speaking to the head of application outreach at SE I learned the platform is completely open both to developers and users of handsets from other manufacturers. You need only to install a LiveView bridge app and the LiveWare software that allows you to narrow down Android Market results to LiveView-compatible services. They download on your phone and install to the device over the air.

But the idea of the LiveView is what makes it so compelling. A sports bundle that includes a running app download from the market and some accessories to mount your gear while in motion highlights just one of the areas where the LiveView becomes extremely useful. Your phone takes care of all the monitoring of distance, time, and calories burned while the LiveView’s mini display presents the information in an easy manner. Just glance at your wrist with no need to manage your phone while running.

Of course, you could always use it as a smart watch to display time, recent texts and emails, and countless other applications for just about anything you could think. So it looks a little dorky…but SE promises us their working on that too. A new version will be a bit sleeker than the current chunky plastic. The LiveView retails for about 70 euro; stay tuned for a full review in the near future.

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