Sony has announced the Sony SmartWatch 2, taking the time to point out how the company has been in the smartwatch business for some time.

Unfortunately the sample on display at the London launch event for the new Sony Mobile devices was a prototype, so we've only had the chance to have a look at the design, and we'll be looking at the user interface as soon as we can.

The SmartWatch 2 has an aluminium frame, with the same button design as the Xperia Z or the Xperia Z Ultra, launched alongside the SmartWatch 2 today.

READ: Sony Xperia Z Ultra pictures and hands-on

The sample we got our hands on had a leather strap, although Sony confirmed that there will be a choice of strap styles, as well as a range of colours if you want to make it a little more exciting.

There's not a lot more to add. Sony has sad the battery will last for a few days and that there will be a run of features to make the SmartWatch 2 act as a companion to your Android smartphone, such as remote shutter control, reading messages or viewing mapping.

We’ll bring you more on the Sony SmartWatch 2 as soon as we can.

UPDATE: We've now had a second look at the Sony SmartWatch 2 at a recent event held by Sony and this time it was working.

The interface is very in keeping with Sony's Android experience, but as you can imagine, pared back to fit on such a small display. At any one time you'll get six icons on the screen, and these will feature largish (certainly in comparison to the icon) number counts so you can see how many notifications to the apps you have.

sony smartwatch 2 pictures and hands on image 14

At the moment the app selection is fairly limited, but Sony looks to be talking with a number of third-party developers already including Evernote, Facebook and Gmail, and some fitness apps. Expect more of these to be added in the future.

As for the apps themselves, you aren't going to be using the watch solely to keep up to speed on Facebook for example, but it might just be enough to see what's happening at a quick glance, especially if you've been mentioned.

As we've seen before with smartwatches, the idea here is to glance at information before getting your phone out, not use it to replace your phone. 

In daylight the screen is bright enough to see what's what, and to prevent accidental touches you'll have to press that largish button on the right.

For those who don't like the plastic strap, there is a more rigid metal offering with a much stronger clasp to keep it on your wrist.