Swatch Prepares to Go Head-to-Head With Apple Watch

samcraig

macrumors P6
Jun 22, 2009
16,610
35,319
USA
You seem to care an awful lot about something you don't intend on buying. And by that I mean constantly defending many posts that are remotely negative.

I never said I didn't intend on buying it. I'm not 100% certain I'll get one but I might if reviews are good.

Ah, so nuance and shades of gray ala Barack Obama. :) Do you own the Mont Blanc watch? What execution did they nail?
I don't own the Mont Blanc watch.

But I am intrigued how they, and Kairos looked at the idea of smart watch and took a different approach. Unlike LG, Samsung, Apple and others - you have to admit they came at it from a completely different angle. Of course it's all in the execution. But I can still admire their departure from "more of the same"
 

Keirasplace

macrumors 601
Aug 6, 2014
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Montreal
If the original renders of the I'm Watch versus the launched product are any indication, I'd be highly skeptical of the Kairos renders. Smartwatch presentations are invariably sleeker during the planning/crowdfunding phase than they are when they hit the market. Expect smaller screens, thicker bezels, shallower curvatures. Ultimately the engineers have to deal with the laws of physics ignored by the designers when the products were first conceived (even Ive's genius couldn't avert Antennagate).

I'll believe the Kairos when I see it.

UPDATE. When I originally posted I hadn't reached this post yet:
Then also have to deal with the laws of economics, and the actual performance of the parts they'll put in it... How much does it cost to make it that way, will it actually last and perform decently (you know, watch, and watch band are beat up pretty badly).
 

Rogifan

macrumors Core
Nov 14, 2011
20,666
22,381
I don't own the Mont Blanc watch.

But I am intrigued how they, and Kairos looked at the idea of smart watch and took a different approach. Unlike LG, Samsung, Apple and others - you have to admit they came at it from a completely different angle. Of course it's all in the execution. But I can still admire their departure from "more of the same"
I'll admire it if it works. Different doesn't necessarily mean better.
 

Sigma4Life

macrumors member
Apr 26, 2008
51
34
Texas
The vast majority if people bashing the :apple: Watch will be praising it once they actually use it. Same as the iPad and the iPhone before it. Wash, rinse, repeat.
 

lowendlinux

macrumors 603
Sep 24, 2014
5,155
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North Country (way upstate NY)
I think the difference lies in the idea's of what a smart watch is. Some of us don't want to interact with the watch we want a one way communication device others want a kind of mini-phone on their wrist. I like the Montblanc effort because it lets me keep my watches and provides that one way communication. I don't need a high resolution screen and colors to see a text.
 

k995

macrumors 6502a
Jan 23, 2010
881
133
Thanks for the link, I didn't realize that they have functioning hardware. My two concerns are that the hardware watch face is too hard to see and that the watch is HUGE. It's about twice as thick as the Apple Watch.
Of course you have to wait reviews , but I posted it because of the concept whch for me seems better integrated.

And no, the height is 16.5mm, apple watch is 12/13mm.
 

Pilgrim1099

Suspended
Apr 30, 2008
1,110
596
From the Midwest to the Northeast
At this point what we've seen/heard about this Kairos product is vaporware. It reminds me of the Microsoft Courier. Everyone drooled over that concept too yet we never actually saw a working prototype.

That Montblanc watch looked nice when we first saw the render and the screen showed off perfectly crisp text as if you were looking at a printed page. But then we get a hands-on of the real thing and it doesn't look nearly as great.
Kairos, the company, is still alive and kicking and their new watch offering is not vaporware. If you look closely at their website, they offer the T-Band watch which is a red label styled link on the upper left part of the screen.

Here's the url in case you didn't see it: http://kairostband.com

Definitely not vaporware. Especially when there is a video in their recent blog proving it's for real. I rather have that than the Apple Watch because it's far more focused and less feature cramped. And more professional, I should add.

I personally think Apple is shooting itself in the foot for keeping the watch iOS exclusive. Can you imagine the reaction of new customers wanting the watch, interesting in buying it and then finding out that they're required to have an iPhone to use it, and on top of that, the phone they want is out of supply for the time being? I'm talking about customers that don't have an iPhone but were considering it. Apple is notorious for new iPhone shortages due to demand and if the company is not careful, it may spread itself thinly.

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I'm with you on the heartbeat sharing. That's a geekbrag I would expect from Google, not Apple.

On the other hand, the drawing function might turn out to be surprisingly useful, as it allows users to come of with their own communication shorthand, a sort-of roll-your-own emoji. It could also allow for more rapid writing of non-Western characters, perhaps a highly marketable feature to Asian and Middle Eastern customers.
I think the problem with the Apple Watch is the feature creep and the pricing. When I got the original iPod ( click wheel 2002 version ), it was $400 for that size and storage capacity of 5GB.

The heartbeat thing is still disturbing to me. I don't think it's a geek thing. It's something else. The drawing function is a bit odd for such a small screen. I don't think adults will use it much unless they have a family of their own or kids in school using them to communicate visually that way.

Health and productivity should be the focus of the watch.
 

Rogifan

macrumors Core
Nov 14, 2011
20,666
22,381
Honestly I think digital touch and the whole taptic engine is one of the most unique features of the watch and I believe it will be more popular than people think. Watch is compatable with all the 5 series phones. And one would hope by the time the Watch launches the iPhone supply/demand is in balance.
 

Elvergun

macrumors 6502
Aug 1, 2011
295
101
I think anyone willing to use their imagination can see the potential of Force Touch and the Taptic Engine in a wearable computer.
Use your imagination and tell me what practical applications you would use it for. After the novelty wears off I can't see the majority of Apple Watch owners using it at all. I mean, if it something some people might like to play with, why not make it a downloadable app instead of using resources (resources of the watch as well as Apple's developers time) for something that is practically useless? The drawing thing is another useless function (IMO). In the watch demos I saw the drawings created were awful - the screen is to small to draw with a finger (it seems you need a stylus to create something meaningful).

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Just a hunch. Some folks in my Twitter feed have said similar. Of course I coul be way off base and it never gets used. :)
I have a hunch I would never those functions. I would have made the tap\drawing thing into an app. Those who want it can use it...those who don't can ignore it.

The tap function is basically one of the few things that other smart smart watches don't have. This is what will make the Apple Watch stand apart from the competition? Oh, i forgot about the terrible battery time...another unique feature of the Apple Watch.

Where is Steve Jobs when you need him? :(
 

Gameboy70

macrumors 6502a
Sep 21, 2011
502
217
Santa Monica, CA
I personally think Apple is shooting itself in the foot for keeping the watch iOS exclusive. Can you imagine the reaction of new customers wanting the watch, interesting in buying it and then finding out that they're required to have an iPhone to use it, and on top of that, the phone they want is out of supply for the time being? I'm talking about customers that don't have an iPhone but were considering it. Apple is notorious for new iPhone shortages due to demand and if the company is not careful, it may spread itself thinly.
I think Apple sees the market as a power curve of many high-value customers versus the larger demographic of low-value customers. Having one customer buy an aWatch that needs an iPhone yields much greater lifetime value to Apple than four or five prospective customers who pass on it (now) because of their Android phone. The former will upgrade the watch and the phone, be more inclined to buy other Apple devices, etc. If the watch succeeds and its brand cachet increases, some holdouts will reconsider. Apple has always pursued the best customers (in terms of lifetime value), not the most customers. For every five customers who won't buy the aWatch for being iPhone-only, one customer who wants the aWatch will switch to an iPhone just to have it.

With 140 million iPhones sold (74m of which were last quarter alone), Apple has plenty of runway to prioritize increasing the percentage of iPhone owners who buy the aWatch. Those iPhone owners have already bought into Apple's ecosystem, and they're far more likely to buy the watch than Android owners. The situation was much different with the iPod. The install base of Mac users was so small compared to Windows users, Steve ultimately had to relent to supporting Windows.
 

Gameboy70

macrumors 6502a
Sep 21, 2011
502
217
Santa Monica, CA
I think the problem with the Apple Watch is the feature creep and the pricing. When I got the original iPod ( click wheel 2002 version ), it was $400 for that size and storage capacity of 5GB.

The heartbeat thing is still disturbing to me. I don't think it's a geek thing. It's something else. The drawing function is a bit odd for such a small screen. I don't think adults will use it much unless they have a family of their own or kids in school using them to communicate visually that way.

Health and productivity should be the focus of the watch.
It's interesting how the heartbeat sending feature has become such a lightning rod of criticism when it was only mentioned during the presentation in passing. It's a novelty feature, to be sure, but Apple spent 10 minutes on the health features and only 10 seconds on the heartbeat messaging.

As for the drawing feature, I think the popularity of emoji demonstrates that people are looking for ways to convey nuanced messages without having to type full sentences. If they're constrained by a phone's keyboard, they'll be far more constrained by phone's input offerings. I think "drawing" is a misnomer. The object is to facilitate the creation of user-defined glyphs—e.g. "L?" for "Lunch?" (easy to type on a keyboard, hard on a watch).
 

Elvergun

macrumors 6502
Aug 1, 2011
295
101
It's interesting how the heartbeat sending feature has become such a lightning rod of criticism when it was only mentioned during the presentation in passing. It's a novelty feature, to be sure, but Apple spent 10 minutes on the health features and only 10 seconds on the heartbeat messaging.
Have you seen the demo videos on youbute? There are a lot of them from different tech sites which attended Apple Watch events. They are basically all the same:
They give the reporter a watch on a demo loop...then the Apple employee does a presentation on a working unit. Almost one third of the demo is focused on the tap and drawing feature -- another 1/3 of the presentation is wasted on showing how to change the watch faces and how to change the colors of those watch faces.

I hope the final product has more features than what they showed in the demo because all the Android watches I've seen (again, on youtube) have more features than the Apple Watch.

As for the drawing feature, I think the popularity of emoji demonstrates that people are looking for ways to convey nuanced messages without having to type full sentences. If they're constrained by a phone's keyboard, they'll be far more constrained by phone's input offerings. I think "drawing" is a misnomer. The object is to facilitate the creation of user-defined glyphs—e.g. "L?" for "Lunch?"
As opposed to sending a text message saying, "Lunch" (or typing an "L" for "Lunch")? How did we ever survive the dark ages of technology. I'm glad humanity's suffering is about to reach an end (thank goodness, because it seems that without the Apple Watch human beings will just starve to death). ;)
 
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rjlawrencejr

macrumors 6502
Jun 7, 2007
392
41
LA/OC/IE
Have you seen the demo videos on youbute? There are a lot of them from different tech sites which attended Apple Watch events. They are basically all the same:
They give the reporter a watch on a demo loop...then the Apple employee does a presentation on a working unit. Almost one third of the demo is focused on the tap and drawing feature -- another 1/3 of the presentation is wasted on showing how to change the watch faces and how to change the colors of those watch faces.

I hope the final product has more features than what they showed in the demo because all the Android watches I've seen (again, on youtube) have more features than the Apple Watch.



As opposed to sending a text message saying, "Lunch" (or typing an "L" for "Lunch")? How did we ever survive the dark ages of technology. I'm glad humanity's suffering is about to reach an end (thank goodness, because it seems that without the Apple Watch human beings will just starve to death). ;)
Since th taptic/haptic aspect makes the watch that much more personal I bet it is a hoot once slipped on the wrist - which is probably why so many of the people who have tried it on have a "golly gosh" response to it.

Second, I'm not sure how old you are, so it may be difficult to believe, but I can remember when we coordinated our schedules in advance and committed to a time because we had no phones or email at our fingertips. As you well know, when a new form of technology appears we adjust accordingly and incorporate it into our lives.
 

bobob

macrumors 68030
Jan 11, 2008
2,880
1,641
I think anyone willing to use their imagination can see the potential of Force Touch and the Taptic Engine in a wearable computer.
I mean, if it something some people might like to play with, why not make it a downloadable app instead of using resources (resources of the watch as well as Apple's developers time) for something that is practically useless?
They are both hardware features.
 

Rogifan

macrumors Core
Nov 14, 2011
20,666
22,381
I hope the final product has more features than what they showed in the demo because all the Android watches I've seen (again, on youtube) have more features than the Apple Watch.
Care to name a few? I don't follow Android Wear so don't really know what it does outside of the same stuff Watch does.

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It's interesting how the heartbeat sending feature has become such a lightning rod of criticism when it was only mentioned during the presentation in passing. It's a novelty feature, to be sure, but Apple spent 10 minutes on the health features and only 10 seconds on the heartbeat messaging.

As for the drawing feature, I think the popularity of emoji demonstrates that people are looking for ways to convey nuanced messages without having to type full sentences. If they're constrained by a phone's keyboard, they'll be far more constrained by phone's input offerings. I think "drawing" is a misnomer. The object is to facilitate the creation of user-defined glyphs—e.g. "L?" for "Lunch?" (easy to type on a keyboard, hard on a watch).
I'm willing to go out on a limb and say digital touch and taptic engine will be more popular than people think. There was a time when people said Touch ID was just a gimmick. I don't think anyone is saying that now.
 

samcraig

macrumors P6
Jun 22, 2009
16,610
35,319
USA
Care to name a few? I don't follow Android Wear so don't really know what it does outside of the same stuff Watch does.

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I'm willing to go out on a limb and say digital touch and taptic engine will be more popular than people think. There was a time when people said Touch ID was just a gimmick. I don't think anyone is saying that now.
I think tap vs push and having contextual responses is interesting. Taptic feedback, to me, is more gimmicky. But I could be wrong. I'm just not sold on needing a variety of types of "vibrations" on my wrist. Frequency or long/short vibrations yes. But all of the other smart watches have that.
 

Elvergun

macrumors 6502
Aug 1, 2011
295
101
Care to name a few? I don't follow Android Wear so don't really know what it does outside of the same stuff Watch does.
I don't follow Android either, and I don't own a smart watch...but I have watched a few youtube videos.

Off the top of my head, here are some features the competitors (not only Android) offer:
Wifi, GPS, longer battery life, better designs (subjective, I know), bigger screens...some don't only work with an iPhone, and some don't need a phone at all...there are models which run with the screen always on (and they offer better battery time)...you can make phone calls with the Gear S.

I was hoping to buy the Apple Watch, but now I'm thinking of waiting to take a look at the Kairos watch or the Kairos T-Band.
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They are both hardware features.
Err...you mean features of the OS, right?
 
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LordVic

macrumors 603
Sep 7, 2011
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I think tap vs push and having contextual responses is interesting. Taptic feedback, to me, is more gimmicky. But I could be wrong. I'm just not sold on needing a variety of types of "vibrations" on my wrist. Frequency or long/short vibrations yes. But all of the other smart watches have that.
We keep talking about "taptic" feedback like it's something new and never heard of before.

Yet, I'm finding a real hard time finding anything regarding taptic feedback as a real thing. it sounds again, similar to the "retina" moniker. It's a name Apple is inventing to apply to something that is already fairly common.

Doing research on the term Taptic doesn't report back very much. Just a bunch of articles on the Apple Watch.

What I can determine is that "taptic engine" that apple is using is just Haptic feedback.

Maybe i'm missing something, but what exactly is the "taptic engine" other than a haptic feedback engine, which is not exactly new or unique to Apple.