Acer has decided to throw its hat into the growing ring of wearable devices with the fitness tracking focused Liquid Leap smartband, that may be free when bundled with the Liquid Jade smartphone.
Along with the Liquid Jade 5-inch smartphone, S.T. Liew, Acer's President of its smartphone division, had another surprise up his sleeve (literally) at Acer's global press event this past Tuesday. The Liquid Leap is a wearable activity tracker, what Acer is calling a smartband, that is designed to work with the Jade smartphone.
As with the Jade, Acer wasn't ready to share with us much information about the Leap, but they did have an actual working model they could show us. It is quite thin (17 mm) and unobtrusive and reminds us a lot of the LG Lifeband Touch activity tracker that was shown earlier this year at CES. S.T. did say that the Leap would at first only be coming to selected markets and would initially only be available bundled with the Liquid Jade phone, however, there is a chance that it may be free when bundled. It was not made clear whether the Leap is only compatible with Acer's own phones, like Samsung's Gear wearables, or if it works with any Android phone.
Given that the Liquid Leap is more of an activity tracker than a smartwatch, S.T. showed us a couple of the different fitness focused functions of it, including this 'calories burned' screen.
The Liquid Leap's touchscreen, like the Samsung Gear Fit's, is vertically oriented on your wrist, which may prove a little awkward when trying to read notifications and other information, but at least Acer is aware of this, since in the picture you can see that the icons are correctly aligned.
The Liquid Leap was also shown in red at the event, but this model wouldn't power on. It's not clear if there will be other color options, but we assume there will be since releasing devices in a wide variety of colors seems to be one of Acer's current strategies.
Here is the Leap compared to the Samsung Gear 2 Neo, a full-sized smartwatch, and as you can see, the Leap's screen is tiny when compared to the Gear's. This will limit its functionality beyond its fitness focus, but then again, the Leap should have a substantially longer battery life, and will be a lot cheaper than the Gear (or even free).
Acer did not announce any further details about the Leap at the event, but with a projected release this summer in selected markets, we are sure there will soon be more information available about it.