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Teen-led Neptune to Beat Apple to the Smartwatch Market

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Neptune Pine keyboardMONTREAL, Canada – Neptune Computer Inc., a company co-founded by teenager Simon Tian, announced the world’s first full-feature smartwatch.

The Neptune Pine appears to be a regular wristwatch, although it has the full functionality of a high-end smartphone. The Pine can make calls, take video and pictures, and access the web.

The smartwatch will have a micro-SIM card tray, a 2.5-inch screen with resolution of 320 x 240 pixels, a touch keyboard, 8 GB of internal storage, and a 5-megapixel camera that has the same resolution as the iPhone 4’s one.

Tian, who ended his college preparation to start Neptune using funding from family and friends, says that the watch, like the Samsung Galaxy S3 or the LG Optimus G, will run on the Android operating system.

The device is already available for pre-order at an introductory price of $395, and it will ship in the late third quarter of 2013. Prototypes of the device will be released as early as mid-April.

In the meantime, reports suggest that Apple is working on its own iWatch. Unlike the fully-functional Pine, the iWatch at this stage is being packaged as an accessory to the iPhone. About 100 product designers are said to be working on prototypes for Apple’s own smartwatch. The Cupertino tech giant will add itself to a market where smartwatches have come and left, with many unable to be successful, such as the LG GD910.

Neptune is still looking for a manufacturer to mass produce the device, so it is still a wide open race in the high-tech time piece arena.

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By , International Correspondent, Cebo (Philippines) office
Published on Feb 18th, 2013 GMT +2

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