For the time being, “smart watches” aren’t a smart bet. So far most companies are producing mobile phones that fit on your wrist, not truly thinking of what the utility of a wrist mounted computing device should be used for. Google’s Android Wear watches seem to be the first coherent thought in this brave new world, but unfortunately it’s focused on being a cool gadget for the tech-savvy first while putting the everyday people market second.
That’s where Withings and their new Activité watch come in. At first glance what do you see? A watch. A beautiful watch designed in Paris and made in Switzerland out of stainless steel and unbreakable sapphire glass. This is first and foremost a beautifully designed object that will appeal to folks who still wear watches. Looks are deceiving though as it features a variety of helpful, tech focused features like monitoring distance (walking, running, or swimming), calories burned, and quantity and quality of sleep, all of which will sync with Withing’s existing Health Mate app.
This to me feels like the natural progression of smart watches. Be sure that they appeal to a market of people that still wear watches, a number which I’m sure is dwindling, and give them more functionality with less fuss. The less fuss? The battery in the watch will last a year, not the nightly charging that Google’s watches require. I suppose time will tell how these devices evolve.