Baselworld is a watch event where watchmakers around the world show off their latest wrist watches. For 2015, things were a little different to previous years because smartwatch fever had gripped the show. We saw a large number of traditional watch manufacturers showcasing smartwatches of all different shapes, sizes and platform compatibility. Examples of the companies showcasing watches included Tag Heuer, Alpina, Bulgari, Mondaine, Gucci (in conjunction with Will.i.am) and Vector. These watches differ from the Android Wear and Apple Watch products in that they are being designed first and foremost by watch designers, then being engineered to have smartwatch functionality, rather than being designed by gadget engineers and shoehorned into a wristwatch chassis. Neither technique is “better,” but has so far resulted in slightly different products with different strengths and weaknesses.It’s the Vector smartwatches that are making the headlines as we now have a time of when to expect the two new products: September.
At Baselworld, Vector announced two smartwatch products, the Luna (with a round face) and the Meridian (with a square face). These two devices run a proprietary operating system that can cooperate with Google’s Android, Apple’s iOS and Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform. The watches will be available in a range of steel finishes with a choice of leather or link interchangeable straps available. The devices feature a typical vibration motor as a notification system and will alert the wearer but will not display or dismiss the message until the user raises and subsequently lowers his or her arm. Vector have designed the smartwatch platform with a thirty-day battery life thanks to the use of a memory LCD rather than a touchscreen; there are three buttons along the side of the smartwatch for using it. The smartwatches will be capable of displaying similar notifications as other smartphones can such as incoming text messages and similar. Information will be delivered via the edges of the analogue-style display. Furthermore, Vector have included an activity tracker and the ability to integrate with third-party applications including Google’s Nest and IFTTT.
The price for the Vector smartwatches? The round faced Luna is $349 and the square faced Meridian is just $199, and they are the watches that are due in September, which is right around the corner.