The first Samsung Gear did came with a camera but it wasn’t the most loved feature of the watch. And there are a number of reasons behind it, one of them being the inability to move the camera. To make good use of a camera, you need to be able to move it in any direction, like we do in our smartphones. But for a watch that is on your wrist, it’s not that feasible.
Samsung was quick to acknowledge this fact and dropped the camera from its smartwatches for once and all. The consensus ever since was that a smartwatch didn’t need a built-in camera. However, LG may now spring a life to the feature, but with a different, and much feasible technology. The company plans to configure the camera in such a way that it can moved in the direction of the object to be photographed, and has patented a few designs with the USTPO (United States Trademark and Patent Office) and the WIPO (World Intellectual Property Office).
Camera on the strap
LG has detailed several camera integrations, but they all have one thing in common – they’re all built into the strap, and not on the watch body. By doing so, LG not only keeps the already little space of the watch body for other components, but also makes the camera movable.
The solutions from LG include an adjustable wrist band that allows the wearer to easily angle the camera. Another design uses a metal link for the watch band where one of the links comes with an integrated camera. A third design shows camera in a spring clip which can be placed anywhere along the watch band.
Having a camera on a smartwatch could have some useful real-life applications. And no, we’re not talking about spying. LG thinks the camera could be used to take a picture of your food to track your caloric intake, or even scan the barcode/QR code at the supermarket. If the company succeeds in implementing this technology in an actual product remains to be seen.