In the beginning, man relied on the rising and falling sun as the sole source of time-telling. Many moons later, the sun dial became one of the first standards. Then, the city squares started erecting clocks for the townsfolk. Now, skipping several other iterations, people are wearing iPod Nanos as wrist watches. …until the next advancement in January 2012.
The Italian company I’m is releasing the most progressive timepiece to date and first smart-watch, simply named the i’mWatch. Founding fathers Manuel Zanella and Massimilano Bertolini have created not merely a watch, but also an elegant, Android based connected device capable of linking with iOS, Andriod, Windows 7 mobile, and Blackberry. Boasting over 10 million site hits and next to €5 million of online preorders, I’m has benefitted greatly from their initial demo announcement at the ARM Technology Conference in Santa Carla, which was held in October 2011.
The i’mWatch runs on a custom version of Andriod, allowing for a multitasking platform that is presented on a high resolution (240×240 px, same as iPod Nano), curved 1.54″ TFT display. When paired with a smartphone, the i’mWatch will display inbound calls, text messages, emails, Facebook and Twitter notifications, and other requested information such as current weather forecasts. Additional current functionality includes push notifications for stock market date, music downloads from i’music, a photo gallery application, and calendar appointment notifications with ability to check current appointment information. Moreover, the i’m Store will provide an outlet for the many developers that have already shown interest in i’mWatch app creation (see video below for examples).
As if using the watch as a notification hub was not enough, when receiving a call, the name and calling number will be displayed on the watch. Utilizing the built-in speaker and microphone, the wearer can answer the call direct from the watch, without fumbling around to pull their phone from a jacket or bag. Similarly, outbound calls can also be placed or initiated via the address book app from the watch.
Oh, by the way, it also tells time, analogue and digital time formats are options.
Several iterations of the i’mWatch will be produced at varying price points. The i’mColor (€299), i’mTech (€499), and i’mJewels (€9,999), offer a myriad of options for would be purchasers. Depending on budget or taste, each tier is dictated only by construction materials; the i’mWatch device is the same across all price points differing only in hardware design.
The i’mColor is available in white, yellow, pink, light blue, green, red, and black. Although entry level, the i’mColor still boasts a curved sapphire crystal to cover the TFT display. Options for Titanium and Carbonium are offered in the i’mTech line. If yellow, white (with diamonds), pink or black gold is preferred, pick up an i’mJewels.
In addition to officially releasing the i’mWatch, I’m will finalize its lineup of initial apps, i’m market, and i’m music at CES January 10-13 2012. Zanella and Bertolini will be found giving their press event on Tuesday January 10 from 2:30-3:30. The company is setting up their display at booth #70215 at the Las Vegas Convention Center
Our very own J. Glenn Kunzler will be headed to CES for first hand information on the major electronic announcements and will be in attendance at the i’m press event.
i’mWatch Tech Spec Highlights
- 240x240px resolution
- 220 ppi (pixel per inch)
- 1.54″ color TFT display
- 4GB built-in flash memory
- Rechargeable Li-Po 600 mA battery
- Standby, Bluetooth connected, up to 30 hours
- FULL TECH SPECS