At long last, here are some smartwatches that you will actually want to wear.
As tech fans are counting down to the release of the Apple Watch in April, three Swiss watchmakers have announced plans to launch their own range of smart watches.
Popular Swiss watch makers Frederique Constant, Alpina and Mondaine, in partnership with Silicon Valley based Fullpower Technologies, which specialises in motion tracking software, have formed a new company called Manufacture Module Technologies (MMT) that will offer traditional horological quartz watches with combined smartwatch technology.
The fact the new watches, which will be marketed as Swiss Horological Smartwatches, look like traditional timepieces rather than a typical smartwatch will almost certainly be more appealing to regular watch lovers.
Whilst the new watches are not able to display notifications in the same way a watch like the Moto 360 does, they do include ‘smart’ capabilities of their own.
Like a typical smartwatch, each of the watches connects to your phone via the accompanying Android and iOS app which it uses to set the time of the watch, as well as store data on calories burned, steps taken, movement and sleep patterns.
According to the makers, the new watches will have a battery life of more than two years, which of course is much longer than typical smartwatches, most of which need to be charged after about 12 hours of use.
The luxury Frederique Constant smartwatch from MMT will cost around $1,300, although the company says prices for its horological smartwatches will start at $250. The company states there will be as many as 10 different models for both ladies and gentleman, which will be available to buy by the end of the year.
The full range of Swiss Horological Smartwatches are expected to be showcased at Baselworld later this month.
Apart from only slight forays into the smartwatch market from Swatch and Montblanc, the Swiss watch industry has remained largely ambivalent towards the emergence of smart watches, although the upcoming release of the Apple Watch, as well as the recent announcement of a series of great looking smart watches from Chinese tech company Huawei, perhaps add a little more pressure on Swiss watchmakers.
Despite increasing in popularity in recent years and following predictions from Jony Ive that the Apple Watch will be a serious threat to the Swiss watch industry, generally speaking, smart watches are yet to truly enter the mainstream and it remains to be seen whether the latest trend in wearable consumer tech will result in a resurrection of some of the problems Swiss watch makers faced during the Quartz Crisis of the 1970s and 80s.
Related: Frederique Constant Linked to Motion – Horological Smartwatch
Source: Frederique Constant
Jonathan is our Google Nexus and Android enthusiast. He is also fanatical about football which makes it all the more strange that he should support Stockport County. In addition to writing about tech, Jonathan has a passion for fitness and nutrition and has previously written for one the UK’s leading watch and horology websites.