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Samsung design patents show off smartwatches with rounded displays

A new set of design patents from Samsung give us a look at Samsung's rounded display ambitions.
By
July 30, 2014
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When we first learned about the Motorola Moto 360, we couldn’t help but be impressed by the round design. After all, it was a look that stood out from a growing sea of square watches, while managing to look a bit more like a traditional watch. If you are one of those that like the idea of rounded smartwatches, you’ll be happy to know that Samsung might be joining the club sometime in the future. As first discovered by MobileGeeks, yesterday the USPTO granted Samsung three new design patents for smartwatches with rounded displays.

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Now it’s important to note that Samsung didn’t necessarily steal the idea from Motorola, as the patents were originally filed back in March of 2013. Interestingly enough, all these watches appear to have the cameras built into the watch band, in a manner that appears to be similar to the original Galaxy Gear. Since Samsung has since moved away from this design with the Gear 2, it’s possible that the final look of Samsung’s first rounded watch might differ a bit from the three designs seen in these drawings, if and when Samsung chooses to release such a device. On the other hand, patent no US D709,873 S describes some sort of new gesture recognition system using the mounted camera for detecting fingertips, so it is possible Samsung could keep the camera where it is.

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Aside from sharing a similar placement for a camera/sensor, all three watches also feature a charging port built into the clasp. Beyond this, each patent has slightly different aesthetics, with one of the designs giving us a shape that isn’t just a circle but instead just features nicely rounded corners.

As for what operating system these watches might go with? Judging by the camera in the band, we’d say Tizen is the obvious choice. Then again, Samsung could release at least one model without the camera-band as a successor for the Gear Live. At least for now, we wouldn’t get our hopes up too much, one way or the other. While the presence of design patents shows us that Samsung is interested in going round, it doesn’t mean that they will make the move anytime soon — if ever.

What do you think of these new design patents, like the look or not?