It may not be popular, it may seems a little exaggerating and expensive, but things have changed… In this year 2014, it is a new and a prosperous year for the smart wearables. In the past, smart wearables or rather smart watches seems to be only possible in holly wood movies such as James Bond which uses his smart watch to communicate with the respective agents. Using his phone to drive his vehicle through the city seems extremely sci-fi. However, right now, whatever James Bond did with his high-tech gadgets, all is almost now possible to do so with just our smartphones and smart watches. If I remember correctly, right now there is even an application that allows you to control your car! You may refer to this link here : http://www.connect2car.com/for-mobile/androidgoogle-phones for a simple reference on one of the most fascinating technology that you will ever see. Well, lets put all the smartphone aside and lets talk about the smart wearables.
Once again, Samsung is the one who start the whole new era of smart watches. However, we may not even realising it, the first smart watch actually debuts already in 1972! At that time, ‘ Pulsar ‘ was the first digital watch which was capable to store 24 digits, making it the first watch with user-programmable watch in 1982. Made by Seiko, slowly they evolve until out present day digital watch that is capable to store memory and also programmable by the user. Casio is also one of the first & leading brands to hit the market too with their digital watches. Even till today, Casio’s watches is extremely popular around the world, especially for their Baby-G and G-Shock series. Before I got my smart watch, I was using one of Casio’s G-Shock series. Extremely reliable, in terms of quality and battery life. It has been four years ever since I start wearing it and right now apart from the strap that is a little worn out, it is still completely intact. Alright, enough history of digital watches, let’s talk about what is so unique about the smart watches.
Conventionally, our digital watch is only able to display time, date, stop watch, and timer to us. In September 2013, the first smart watch, Samsung Galaxy Gear makes it’s debut. This smart watch is not only capable to do what is mention in my previous sentence, but also your notifications too. Be it whether there is a new text message, email or an incoming call, you smart watch is able to help you to read or reply them without you touching your phone. The concept of the Samsung Galaxy is to ‘ To minimise interaction between you and your phone ‘ said by Samsung. Nowadays, these smart watches acts as a external bluetooth device. Upon pairing with your smartphone, any messages/email that is send to your phone will be synchronise automatically to your smart watch as such that you are able to view them instantly, although you can’t really reply through your watch though. As for incoming calls, you can answer and pick them up though your smart watch. Calls will be loud speaker that is found on the smart watch and we can answer by just talking to the watch, since there is a built-in mic too. Apart from that, we can see the weather forecast too, since it uses your phone’s mobile data to do so. There are many more built-in features too, such as pedometer to measure your step count and also the capability of finding your device if you misplace your phone. As long as your smart watch is paired with your phone and it is within the range 10 meters, then yup it will light up your phone as well as ringing it too. In addition, there is even a built in 1.9 megapixel camera on the smart watch for you to take some quick snapshots! Cool right?
The market demand for smart watches isn’t very high last year, after the the first Samsung Gear makes it’s debut in September 2013. However, this year especially when the new Samsung Gear 2 is launched with 2 variants available, the sales of the smart watch shoot straight up in just a couple of months. Ever since it was shipped to Singapore, apart from the Pebble Steel, the Gear 2 was leading in the market too. However, like some other experts have said, their leading sales could be due to currently they are the only smart watch available that is capable of many other features such as heart rate monitor, etc. Well, once LG’s new smart watch together with other respective brands such as HTC, Lenovo, etc arrives in Singapore, we can then see the competition.
All of them are mostly IP67 rating right now, which means that they are able to withstand up to 1 meter depth for 30 mins under water so no worries during wet weather. Also, if you prefer a mono tone screen smart watch like any other digital watch available, Pebble Steel is for you then. Your notifications, your calls, yup you are able to do so with the smart watch. The only difference from Gear 2 or Sony smart watch is that it is not AMOLED, just a mono tone screen. If you want to be like me, having a unique smart watch for certain purposes (such as able to pick up calls from your watch) yup do consider getting one though. In future, it is possible that all watches next time will be at least ‘ smart ‘ haha. In the past, yes it seems impossible because it is not necessary and it’s pricey. But right now, with technology so advanced it sort of became a need to get a smart watch or for a tech geek like me. Also, it is more affordable right now, like the Pebble Steel you can get it at only SGD$150. In conclusion, do we really need the smart wearables? You will decide for it.