Sony straps on Internet-linked wristwatch

Sony on Thursday released an Internet-linked wristwatch powered by Google-backed Android software.

SmartWatch gets online by connecting wirelessly to a wearer's Android smartphone using Bluetooth technology, according to Sony.

The high-tech timepiece reminiscent of one worn by classic comic strip detective Dick Tracy was priced at $150, available online and at Sony stores.

"SmartWatch provides access to live content and entertainment on the go," said Sony Mobile Communications customer unit president Paul Hamnett, who billed it as the first in a series of gadgets to "expand the smartphone's reach."

SmartWatch can switch from displaying time to acting as a touchscreen interface for smartphone information.

Vibrations or alerts flashed on the 1.3-inch (3.3-centimeter) screen can signal incoming calls and wearers can glance at their wrists to peruse email or text messages as well as Facebook or Twitter updates by friends.

Mini-applications tailored to add features to SmartWatch devices were available at the Google Play online shop, according to Sony.

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