CoWatch, a shiny new Amazon Alexa boasting smartwatch, has hit Indiegogo, and boasts enough power and a low enough price to make any competitor sit up and take notice.
The CoWatch is built by IMCO and runs Cronologics OS, a fully fledged Android-based smartwatch operating system. Cronologics is a start-up featuring former Android and Android Wear developers, including Leor Stern, who spent 10 years at Google and more recently IFTTT. And Wareable caught up with the team ahead of the crowdfunding campaign to take a look at the new smartwatch.
Essential reading: Best Android Wear smartwatches
Down to brass tacks the CoWatch is a fully featured round-faced smartwatch, featuring an AMOLED 400 x 400 display with a pixel density of 286PPI. It's impressive stuff that blows pretty much all the existing Android Wear crop out of the water – with the exception of the Huawei Watch, which it matches pound-for-pound.
The case itself is constructed from stainless steel and ceramic, which means there's no plastic on the watch body at all.
Inside, there's a 1.2GHz Ingenic M200 processor, 1GB of RAM and 8GB of storage, double what's provided in most smartwatches.
It's all highly impressive, but it's perhaps the presence of Amazon's Alexa virtual assistant that really impresses most. We were treated to a demonstration of Alexa in action, which boasts Siri-like functionality from the wrist, including scheduling reminders, calling or messaging contacts, retrieving web queries and of course, adding stuff to your Amazon shopping list.
The CoWatch isn't short of sensors either. All the usual accelerometer and gyroscopes are onboard, as well as a heart rate sensor for activity tracking. But there's no GPS for real sports – which kind of makes sense given the high-end design and the fact that the CoWatch comes with options for leather and Milanese bands. Hardly sporty.
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And the final boast concerns battery life. The company claims it works for 32 hours with an always-on display and three days in low power mode, where the screen turns off when not in use.
With working samples and a delivery date slated for June 2016, CoWatch looks like the real deal. So it's slightly odd that the company is looking for a weighty $80,000 on Indiegogo go get the project off the ground.
But it stands every chance with such a competitive price tag. Early backers can bag a CoWatch for just $159, and the full price will be $279. To put that in perspective, the Huawei Watch costs $349. Buyers can also choose between black and stainless steel.
We'll be checking back in with CoWatch if and when the company hit its goal.