Traditional watches have a certain appeal that will ensure that they will not completely disappear even as smartwatches become more ubiquitous. We have already seen a number of solutions that aim to give traditional watches some if not all of the functionality of a smartwatch. Montblanc came up with the Montblanc Timewalker Urban Speed e-Strap while IWC is teasing us with the IWC Connect which attaches to a watch strap. Chronos meanhwile is working on a small disk that will attach to the back of a traditional watch. A new Kickstarter project is offering yet another approach. The uBirds Unique smart watch strap aims to solve the problem in a more discrete fashion.
The Unique watch strap incorporates a multi-colour LED, vibration alerts and gesture recognition to deliver much of the functionality that a smartwatch does. Supported functions include an activity tracker (distance, calories burned, steps, speed), notifications including phone calls and messages and alerts when you’re about to leave your smartphone behind. Gesture control will enable you to easily perform actions like dismissing an incoming call with a simple tap on the strap. It will also come with an NFC tag to support a range of additional functions although contactless payments will not be among them.
Unique delivers smart functionality in a way that is subtle and non-intrusive. Using cutting-edge technology, we’ve managed to integrate all the electronic components into the strap itself, so there’s no visible difference between Unique and a traditional luxury watch strap. Unique is beautifully functional, unlike smartwatches that are merely functional – and thanks to gesture recognition you can control your phone directly from your watch strap. Which means that, for the first time, you can transform your treasured heirloom or precision chronograph into a piece of technology that will help you every minute of the day.
A dedicated uBirds Unique app, compatible with Android and iOS, will allow you to get information about your activities, progress against personal goals and selecting which notifications are sent to the strap.
The Unique will have a battery life of about two to three days. It can be recharged wirelessly using a wireless inductive charger.
uBirds has already raised more than half of its US$50,000 goal. You can back the project and get a unique strap (Light Brown, Dark Brown or Black) for US$169 (about CA$225). You can also design your own uBirds Unique smart watch strap with the company’s creator for US$499 (about CA$670).
Source : Kickstarter