With Apple making the headlines recently for its release of the new Apple Watch, the term “Smartwatch” has now hit the spotlight amongst the majority. However, many people in the tech industry have known about smart watches and its potential to become the next “big thing” in technology. For me, the term “smartwatch” came around back in 2012 when Pebble launched its crowd funded kickstarter campaign and exceeded expectations by 100x the amount they wanted. And last year, Google launched their Android wear operating system for manufacturers to go ahead and make watches.
Obviously, with watches, there are certain physical constraints that have to be reasonably adhered to in order to be a watch and these cause limits to what a device can and can’t do. Unfortunately, I don’t know any manufacturer which has hit the nail on the head with getting what I would call “my perfect smartwatch”.
The Basics of my Smartwatch
First and foremost, it must tell me the time! I don’t want to have a watch which does everything but tell the time. It must be the first things I see when I glance at my watch.
The Form of my Smartwatch
- No bigger than the old popular g-shock watch
- No smaller than a classic Casio illuminator
- Preferably as little bezel as possible
- Looks like a normal watch
- Fully round, or rectangular. No other shape
- Normal looking straps or extra screen real estate utilising curved screen technology
- Scratch Resistant
The Health and Fitness Capabilities of my Smartwatch
As an owner of the Fitbit Flex, it’s important that it is a worthy replacement of it.
- Track steps
- Track sleep movement
- Monitor heart rate
- Silent Alarm
- Exercise Tracking
- Can possibly hook up to the Fitbit system for competing with friends
Interaction with my Smartwatch
- Touch screen
- Intuitive User Interface
- Side buttons/dials
- No on screen keyboard – too tiny for that
- Little vibration on notifications
- Time screen as default
- An API to extend it with apps.
- Always on screen
- Choice of analogue and digital clock face.
- Remote control to your phone (i.e. music player).
- Map navigation
- No games unless augmented
Battery Life of my Smartwatch
Unfortunately, I doubt that a smartwatch will be able to last as long as a standard wrists watch and I think I will be waiting years/decades before we get a smartwatch where we won’t have to worry about its battery. It does however need to:
- Last for 5 Days+
- Have wireless charging
Ultimately, a smart watch shouldn’t be more than just an extension to your phone with the benefits of being able to monitor your health around the clock.
Currently the only thing that comes closest to my requirements is the Fitbit Surge but in the last year there has been 5-10 different smart watches announced and released and I am sure 2015 will have a flurry of more. I doubt I will see anything that would be “My perfect smartwatch” but I hope to have one which will be close to being my “My perfect smartwatch”.