Samsung smart watch set to have messaging app Line pre-installed

By Ted Chen, The China Post

TAIPEI, Taiwan — Operators of the popular messaging and voice call application LINE yesterday announced that its service will come pre-installed on Samsung’s Galaxy Gear, an upcoming wearable computing device set to be released in October.

The company’s office, based in Taiwan, yesterday stated that an optimized variant of its software, named LINE for Galaxy Gear, will be featured on the upcoming smart watch device. Running on the smart watch, the application will enable wearers to receive text messages and emoticon stickers without additional fees. The software will also display notification alerts via the display of the smart watch whenever a user’s account receives a text message. Users may also browse their text messages history on the smart watch’s display. An accompanying LINE Watch Manager software suite will also be released to facilitate connection between the smart watch and phone.

However, the company stated that its service is only available to existing LINE users, noting that new users are required to first start a new account via the software’s desktop or mobile versions. The company stated that the intention of its migration towards wearable devices is designed to offer greater convenience to existing users, and not an avenue for seeking new subscribers.

In addition, due to the smaller format of the smart watch, the device may only display incoming messages and is not equipped to compose or send messages, said the company, adding that its application will retain the same Web-based voice call functions as its mobile or desktop counterparts.

Samsung’s new smart watch device will be simultaneously launched in Taiwan, Europe, and North America in October.

According to the company, LINE has garnered over 230 million users worldwide since its launch in 2011.