(Update: LG explains) Watch Urbane 2nd Edition LTE pulled from shelves due to hardware issues

by: John DyeNovember 24, 2015
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LG Watch Urbane 2 2nd Edition Hands On -3

Update, November 24: LG explained its decision in a statement to The Telegraph. The company hinted at a problem with one of the components, that it discovered too late.

“For competitive and supplier relations reasons we are not in a position to communicate the specifics of the issue that led to this decision. However, what we can share is that the hardware issue was related to a new advanced component that we had incorporated in the device that had never been used in an LG wearable device before.

During aggressive testing over thousands of hours under severe conditions, it was revealed that this component failed to meet LG’s quality standards and could potentially impact our image quality over the life of the device.

“We would like to make very clear that the issue in question has no bearing whatsoever on the safety of the device or the wearer. It is, simply, an issue that might affect the user experience of the LG Watch Urbane 2nd Edition over the long term”

Original post, November 19: Only a week after its launch by AT&T, LG is stopping all sales of the Watch Urbane 2nd Edition LTE smartwatch. According to 9to5Google’s sources, AT&T has notified its retail stores that those who bought the second-edition watch are eligible for a refund due to the “quality issue.”

LG has given no date for the smartwatch’s return to the market

The reason for this halt in sales and soft recall is, according to LG, “a hardware issue which affects the day-to-day functionality of the device.” The news comes as disappointing to many Verizon subscribers, as the device was slated to launch in their stores tomorrow morning, November 20th. LG has given no date for the smartwatch’s return to the market, and it might even be gone for good.

The Watch Urbane 2nd Edition was the first Android Wear smartwatch to offer cellular capabilities. This was received with much enthusiasm by fans of Android Wear, as it made the device far less reliant on an accompanying cell phone. It seemed like Android Wearers were leaving the days of leaning so heavily on Bluetooth and wifi networks behind. Unfortunately, no other manufacturers seem to have plans in the works to bring a similar Wear device to the market in the near future, although Google insists that we can expect them down the road.

LG Watch Urbane 2 2nd Edition Hands On -4Don't miss: LG Watch Urbane 2nd Edition first look10

Although it’s sad to have the Watch Urbane 2nd Edition pulled away before we even really got to know it, this move is far better for LG and consumers alike, rather than having compromised hardware plague the device. If we’re lucky, LG will get to the root of this unspecified issue and we’ll see the Watch Urbane 2nd Edition rise from the ashes like a mighty phoenix. Only time will tell.

What are your thoughts? Are you a Watch Urbane 2nd Edition LTE owner? Have you noticed any suspicious issues with your device, and will you be taking it back to AT&T to take advantage of their trade-in? Let us know in the comments!

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  • Sick & Tired

    I bought mine Monday and I have had zero issues. I think I will keep it and hope for the best. This is hands down the best smart watch on the market. All the other smart watches I have used were more of a novelty. The Urbane 2 is a useful tool. I love this watch!

    • Kessel

      I got mine the same time as you and I love it. No issues that I can find. One thing that got my attention…seems to always be on H+ and not LTE. Has anyone else seen this?

      • deweyduo

        Where are you seeing this on the watch? (Sorry, I should know this, but haven’t found it)

        • Kessel

          Mine shows for about 1 second when you pull down the settings from the top of the display.

          • deweyduo

            Thanks for the pic Kessel. I was under the impression that was the cellular connectivity. I don’t have any WI-Fi connections on my watch… i followed the direction on ATT’s site (below) and the setting for Wi-Fi just isn’t there… i wonder if this could be it… a claim of Wi-Fi connectivity on the watch that doesn’t exist? I can also confirm that LTE is available on my phone, but the watch is only on HSPA, and they are 1 ft away from each other.

            https://www.att.com/devicehowto/tutorial.html#!/interactive/id/interactive_1500002302?make=LG&model=LGW200

          • deweyduo

            This is NOT on my watch (snapshot from ATT site) or anywhere to be found…

          • Kessel

            That is odd. I’ve got that wifi setting on mine and it seems to be functioning normally. Only thing that seems a bit off is it doesn’t seem to ever “hand off” back to LTE once it loses it until I restart.

  • Marc Perrusquia

    I got mine at launch and haven’t had any issues.

  • Acaa Aca

    wonder what hardware issue

    • Edge of Surreality

      If it affects day to day functioning I am guessing it probably is the funky large battery or one of the antennas.

  • Edge of Surreality

    It would have been nice if someone told at&t about the cancellation, they kept cancelling my order as it was preparing to ship…Let’s hope LG can streamline the device a bit and figure a way to have interchangeable watch band, a less bulky height, and watch buttons that can be reassigned to other functions besides contacts and health!

    • LJ

      An interchangeable watch band, like the LG WL100 that will fit any 22mm strap? 😉 How things go backwards

  • Dlux408

    I purchased the LG Urbane 2nd edition on launch day (Friday), and just returned it today because even with a bluetooth headset connected, it would not let me take the call through it. I had to use the speaker on the watch for the calls. Why use the speaker when a headset is already attached?! Also, the buttons on the unit should be given the option for whatever apps or services we want. We’re so close! I can taste it!

  • Dwayne Bailey

    I bought mine on Wednesday, and I haven’t observed any issues yet. I’m really hesitant to return it without knowing the specifics of the problem, since there’s nothing else in the android wear space to replace it. And, given that I had to drive to a store 45 minutes away to get it after AT&T had cancelled my online orders TWICE, I feel pretty attached

  • gencodeinc

    I am not having any issues like others, so what is wrong with the watch they won’t tell anyone? I use the AT&T version on T-Mobile, is the issue that its not locked or something, if so I like that issue ;-) I called they wont tell me whats wrong with it, I just don’t get why they wont tell anyone what the actual issue is.

  • goconfigure

    I was also lucky enough to get one of these and my experience has been very positive. No issues at all. In fact, I bought this thinking I would have to pay the restock fee if I returned it because I was going to try my T-Mobile SIM in it. To my amazement my T-Mobile SIM card works fine in it and I’m able to make and receive calls to and from the watch. I can also receive texts and can send canned replies back. I cant however connect to Google Now or any internet service like the default Weather app or use my voice to reply to texts. This leads me to believe that the phone watch is clearly unlocked and maybe ATT didn’t like that. I’m also not able to edit the APN settings at all. This could be the way ATT wanted it to keep out other SIMs. I’ve come to realize over the last couple days that even though it works as a T-Mobile phone, I’m not going to SIM swap to this device as my day to day phone. But being the Android watch user I am, I have found a way to use its unique feature sets to my advantage. Since this is one of the only Android watches with a speaker, the Bluetooth pass-thru function is just awesome. I love taking calls on my wrist! I have turned off the LTE radio and just use it as an Android watch and because it has a huge battery to run the LTE radio, turning it off has yielded about a 3 day battery life! I’m keeping mine.

    • gencodeinc

      GoConfigue, I am also using TMobile with my ATT Urbane 2, were you ever able to get data to work?
      There is an advanced but not much you can change there.

  • Steven Edmonds

    I have my LG Urbane 2. Been using it daily for a week now… I have noticed some pretty buggy wifi and Bluetooth issues (can’t use BT headset for calls. when using watch as speaker for phone, it will toggle itself from phone to watch a few times randomly. annoying stuff like that). Other than that, I love this thing… Looks like I won’t be getting any kind of patch for these wireless issues… shame. I wonder if I’d get more $$ selling on eBay since this thing is now a rare gem… Especially with Christmas around the corner, mwahaha… Still my favorite smartwatch, even with it’s issues… so far.

    • Steven Edmonds

      Any word on how far out AT&T will accept for refund? I wanna hang on to it as long as I can. It’s still the best smart watch out there by far.