Wednesday, 1 April 2015

Baselworld 2015 Swartwatch Roundup.

The announcement of the development of an Apple Watch some 14 months ago has clearly galvanised the world of horology.  Aside from the Breitling and Gucci Will I Am watches already discussed here, no less than six other companies have created smartwatches to announce at the show.  
Two things significant.  Aside from the Breitling and Bulgari watches no true high end watchmakers have attempted to enter this market.  And no Manufacture's.  Also, Bulgari.  The Minority Report-Tom Cruise Bulgari super-watch just became one step closer.

From Alpina offers something for the ladies, an all stainless steel, silver faced, in a 39mm case, with stones on the numerals, and around the bezel.  The bluetooth linked, app controlled technology within the watch will give users the ability to track activity, sleep, fitness levels, fitness goals, and all activity levels, including an altimiter to track flights of stairs walked.  The dial at the 6-o-clock gives seconds, and, with a small red hand,  track users meeting their daily goals. 

Bulgari have gone the way of creating something which on the surface has no disernable technological advances, but happens to both be a digital wallet, and NFC tech wonder.  Cast from carbon. magnesium and gold, it will allow the owner to store all private information, open car doors, activate technology, and pay for purchases.  

Budget luxury brand Frederique Constant have unveiled a male version of the Alpina watch, Alpina being also owned by Freqerique Constant, which features the exact same technology, activity tracking, sleep tracking, and app linked to a mobile phone or other device, on a smart gold plated 42mm case, plain face, and brown crocodile band.  The automatic movement also powers the technological element of the device, meaning it will never need to be recharged.

Guess watches unveiled a pretty underwhelming offering, a basic quartz watch with bluetooth linkage and a single line lcd display that display notifications from a linked device.  Nothing particularly new here, as this technology has been around for several years, indeed G-Shock released a a bluetooth smartwatch that performs in exactly the same way over a year ago.  But Guess is of course a fashion watch brand,. so this is not particularly shocking.

Kairos have created a gold plated rubber banded smartwatch with a hybrid digital and analogue display, automatic Swiss or Japanese movement, semi transparent screen, and bluetooth linkage to Android or iOS and Windows phone devices.  The display will show information sent from the linked device, and the separate movement means the watch will still display the time after the digital element stops working.

Mondaine's Helvetica 1 Smartwatch has chosen to step away from the iconic railway clock face style, and gone for a helvetica font style.  App linked, this offers the ability to change the time from the app, and activity tracking, fitness, and sleep tracking.  Being a quartz watch, this does not require recharging, it will merely run till he battery exppires, then the user will change the battery.

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