Casio announced that it will officially release the PRO TREK Smart WSD-F30 smartwatch on January 18, 2019. This announcement comes several months after the tech firm unveiled the wearable during the IFA 2018 event. Aside from the device itself, Casio will also release an optional extra-long cloth accessory band for the WSD-F30 identified by the item number WSA-BX1. This accessory, according to the tech firm, will permit users to wear the smartwatch over the sleeve of thick rugged jackets.
Casio also collaborated with the developers of the cycling map application Bikemap to expand the feature set of the WSD-F30. This partnership allows Casio to offer information maps and routes that the users of the WSD-F30 smartwatch may download before a trip for offline access. Meanwhile, the records of the person’s cycling activity captured by the device, which may include the routes taken, time spent traveling, and the cycler’s speed and the distance covered during the trip, are synced automatically to the Bikemap app.
Background: Casio already detailed the specifications and features of the Casio PRO TREK Smart WSD-F30 smartwatch in an announcement made last August. The device ships with Google’s Wear OS pre-installed, and it is compatible with handsets that run Android 4.4 KitKat or newer. The WSD-F30 smartwatch is water resistant at a depth of up to 50 meters even with a microphone installed on the product. The wearable is also enclosed in a MIL-STD-810 case, which permits the device to withstand extreme environments like temperatures lower than -10 degrees Celsius and repeated falls onto concrete. In comparison with the previous generation WSD-F20 smartwatch, the case of the newer product is slightly smaller and has reduced bezel thickness. The WSD-F30 also includes a circular dual-layer display comprised of a monochrome LCD panel and a color LCD screen. The color LCD display is useful in showing maps while the monochrome panel is used to show time and the measurement of the atmospheric pressure and altitude. The device is compatible with a number of satellite navigation systems, including GPS, GLONASS, and Michibiki, and it also supports both Bluetooth Low Energy 4.1 and 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi connectivity standards.
The smartwatch offers three different operation modes, with each mode offering varying lengths of battery life. In the normal mode, the monochrome and color displays, GPS, Bluetooth, and Wi-Fi radios are all activated, and it offers a battery life of up to 1.5 days. On the other hand, the Extend Mode doubles the battery life of the wearable to 3 days by switching off the device’s Bluetooth and Wi-Fi radios, while the multi-timepiece mode further lengthens the device’s battery life to one month by only activating the smartwatch’s monochrome display. Casio will offer three color variants of the device, namely blue, orange, and black, and it will likely ship with a price tag of $549.
Impact: There is little information about the availability of the WSD-F30, although users may expect that this device will be available on Amazon just like the device’s predecessor. Furthermore, the collaboration between Casio and Bikemap as well as the new accessory released by the tech firm will benefit the smartwatch’s target market of outdoor enthusiasts, especially the consumers who either travel by cycling on a regular basis or live in extreme environments that require extra layers of clothing.