The Dick Tracy-style voice command watches are here. Yes, soon it’ll be OK to talk to your wrist in public. But the question is: Are today’s smartwatches techy enough for the mass market? “Only 100 million smartwatches will be shipped by 2017, in comparison to 1.6 billion smartphones and 280 million tablets,” predicts senior analyst Joshua Flood at market intelligence company ABI Research. However, current smartwatches are likely to appeal to so-called “iPhone fanatics,” thanks to their email, text, social media and phone message alerts.
In fact, the iPhone generation has provided a fashionable market opportunity for Sweden-based Mutewatch, a “retro and futuristic” timer as described by CEO Mai-Li Hammargren. Looking at it, it’s incredibly ’80s, with a touch of Knight Rider-style, but the technology is suitably now: It has no buttons, is activated with a flick of a wrist or a touch of the screen and charged via USB (battery life of three to four days).
Get ready to wear watches again.
Click through for models on the market