Smart watches such as the Pebble, Cookoo, and Metawatch have been around for a while now, and at this point, it’s become abundantly clear that the market for wearable technology is absolutely ripe for innovation. But given the smart watches that are already available, could a new entry into the smart watch market really offer anything new and exciting enough to uproot the current champions?
PH Technical Labs thinks so, and they’ve just launched a Kickstarter campaign for a unique new wearable device called the HOT Watch. But just what makes the HOT Watch so different from the Pebble or the Metawatch? According to the Kickstarter page…a lot. First, the device goes one step further than the Pebble or the Metawatch, offering full dialing call answering and rejecting, and emergency calling abilities. It can even detect when a user falls down, and can automatically dial for an ambulance (which would be very handy for older individuals, or those prone to breaking bones).
From the official press release sent to us by PHTL:
PH Technical Labs unveiled its ground breaking new Smart-watch entitled HOT Watch that, for the first time, allows users to make and receive private phone calls directly from the watch. The user sees the caller’s name/number and simply holds the watch-hand-palm up to his/her ear, speaks into the built-in microphone and listens via simplistic, yet innovative “palm and sound waves” technology (i.e. the receiving voice is amplified by the user’s palm.) HOT Watch is also the first to include an advanced touch screen, gestures and call and message functionality in a stylish, slim package. HOT Watch will debut on the popular crowd-funding site Kickstarter today.
That’s not all the device will offer, however. Aside from calling, HOT Watch also supports sending and reading SMS test messages, and includes apps for a variety of purposes, such as weather, stocks, Twitter, and a pedometer. It even includes an accelerometer, and support for active gestures that detect the movement of your watch in space (by rotating your wrist, raising your hand, etc.)
Perhaps the most exciting feature, however (at least to me), is the “private calling”, which uses a uniquely designed speaker and a technology called Hands On Talk (HOT, reflecting the name of the watch) to reflect call audio off of your palm, allowing you to hear the call by holding your hand to your ear, but keeping it private to those nearby.
The device is also water resistant, sports an e-ink display (like the Pebble), and includes multi-touch input – something which none of the major competing smart watches currently offer. The Kickstarter campaign is hoping to raise $150,000 to fund the development of the watch – and considering that it’s already up to $86,000 at the time of this writing, less than 24 hours after the campaign began, it seems likely that it will reach its goal.
If you want to contribute to the project and reserve a HOT Watch for yourself, you’ll need to pledge at least $109 before the campaign runs out of slots. There are 4 different designs to choose from, depending on how much you pledge. For more information, or to make a pledge, head on over to the official HOT Watch Kickstarter page!
UPDATE: A huge congrats to PH Technical Labs – the HOT Watch received it’s full Kickstarter funding in barely over a single day!