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Meta announces new premium iPhone-connected smart watch lineup

post #1 of 23
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Meta, the smart watch maker formerly known as MetaWatch, has announced its next generation of iPhone-connected, wrist-worn devices, set to launch this spring with an all-new look and premium design from the brains behind Vertu luxury electronics.

Meta


Meta's newly announced products will be on display at this week's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Nev., though the new smart watches won't go on sale until later this year at Best Buy and other retail partners. The "premium" smart watches were created by famed designer Frank Nuovo, of Nokia and Vertu.

As part of its branding shift, Meta is now focusing on what it calls "beautiful, premium smart watches." Pricing for the new products has not yet been announced, but the "premium" distinction may signal that the devices could be more costly than the company's previous lineup, which currently tops out at $200 for the "Frame" model.

"This is the official start of our new brand evolution to Meta," said Meta Chief Executive Bill Geiser. "The Meta brand expresses a blend of modern and classic style while integrating technology as a means to enhance the human side of your digital life."



Meta's new slogan, "The Art of the Glance," focuses on the fact that its smart watches are widget-driven, allowing users to quickly glance at their wrist to view information beyond the current time, with local weather, sports scores, upcoming calendar entries and more capable of being displayed simultaneously.

In the new design, the pivot points that hold the band in place on the watch are located further inward, toward the center of the display. Meta officials say that the new design change allows for a more comfortable fit on the wrist.

"The new META line provides a visibly unique, classically influenced style, which is inspired and driven by our theme: 'Art of the Glance,'" Nuovo said. "It's a perfect solution for customers personal fashion sense and a desired improvement to their digital mobile experience."

Tech specs for the new Meta lineup were not provided, but images appear to show an improved display on the latest watches. AppleInsider took a look at the MetaWatch Frame in late 2012, and found that the mirrored monochrome LCD display was a weak point on the device.

AppleInsider will be at CES this week, and will be offering full hands-on impressions of the new premium Meta watches, as well as any other wearable devices that may debut at the show. For more, see our ongoing coverage of CES 2014.
post #2 of 23

I wonder if these watch designers ever think, "What would Jony do?"

 

It doesn't look like it.  

 

Best.

post #3 of 23
I think if Apple enters this market, the watches will be "normal" looking instead of the ongoing parade of monstrosities that everyone else keeps introducing. Hopefully it will just be a screen (round) with a BLE connection to the iPhone.
post #4 of 23
There is enough "wearable tech" in my 1959 Breitling Navitimer. A whole lot more style though.
post #5 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by focher View Post

I think if Apple enters this market, the watches will be "normal" looking instead of the ongoing parade of monstrosities that everyone else keeps introducing. Hopefully it will just be a screen (round) with a BLE connection to the iPhone.


Why does the screen have to be round? There are analog watches with square faces after all

post #6 of 23
I bet they all keep better time than my Rolex, heck a Timex would! 1biggrin.gif
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post #7 of 23
not feeling it for any of these devices... not sure even iwatch would kindle my interest. IMO not sure what a 'watch' brings to the party except convience.
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post #8 of 23
God I can't wait until CES and the endless parade of "look at us, we're innovating!" is over.
post #9 of 23

Here's what I wear (sometimes). Swiss Army brand, sapphire crystal (no scratches in 12 years), titanium band (purchased in Switzerland in 2001). 5/16" thin, 1-1/2" dial. Anything larger and more obtrusive and I'm not wearing it. Cost me $150 and will last a lifetime. Change the battery every 5-7 years. Don't want a plastic or leather band (cause my arm to sweat). I'm not a teenager or 20-something person trying to make a fashion statement either. 

 

post #10 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by msuberly View Post

There is enough "wearable tech" in my 1959 Breitling Navitimer. A whole lot more style though.

My 'wearable tech' consists of a 1950s Jaeger-LeCoultre that has a mechanical alarm.
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post #11 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post

I bet they all keep better time than my Rolex, heck a Timex would! 1biggrin.gif

Aren't there enough disagreements on here that you have to start time piece argument? lol.gif
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post #12 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by christopher126 View Post

I wonder if these watch designers ever think, "What would Jony do?"

It doesn't look like it.

1) Of the smart watches on the market I like the style of these the best even though they aren't my style.

2) I do wonder if they seriously ask themselves that question or if they get too bogged down in their internal red tape with managers breathing down their necks to cut costs that the truly talented people can't make something truly wonderful until Apple does it and then their bosses come back and say, "Why aren't we doing that?"


Quote:
Originally Posted by johnnyb0731 View Post

Why does the screen have to be round? There are analog watches with square faces after all

They don't have to be round but it does offer certain style options but this would require some potentially complex and costly R&D to make asymmetrically cornered displays. For instance, Nest Thermostat uses a square display but only shows a round opening to give the effect of a round display. This wouldn't be practical for a watch face since there isn't much additional border room and the extra power for only needing about 3/4 that display area. Of course, if you move to something other than LCD you pretty much can eschew all that R&D unless you really need that part of the watch display removed.

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post #13 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by boeyc15 View Post

not feeling it for any of these devices... not sure even iwatch would kindle my interest. IMO not sure what a 'watch' brings to the party except convience.

I'm kind of with you on this, boeyc15. The last thing I want is another device to plug-in, update and charge. (Although, Apple seems to have the auto-syncing between devices solved.)

 

I want a dumb large flat screen TV for my ATV, a 27" iMac, an 11" MBA, Time Capsule, a  > 13" iPad Air/Pro (for home) and an iPad Mini-R (for travel) and an iP5s (Gold).

 

These with iCloud, free Mavericks, free iOS, free iWork suite and free iLife and I'm golden. And SMARTreporter! 

 

Maybe 1Password, Dropbox (100GB) and Carbon Copy.

 

Oh and a Prius.

 

Oh, and a telco provider that doesn't overcharge! T-Mobile? :)

 

Sorry, rambling, again.


Edited by christopher126 - 1/6/14 at 12:13pm
post #14 of 23

Hideous.  Just hideous.

 

Citizen's Eco-Drive is ok.  It needs a metal band, but otherwise, ok.  But every other "smart" watch I've seen has looked like it was recently thrown-up.

post #15 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post


Aren't there enough disagreements on here that you have to start time piece argument? lol.gif

Made me laugh! :) 

 

P.S. Whatever you do, don't say Apple's board is not diverse enough! Whew! :)

post #16 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post

God I can't wait until CES and the endless parade of "look at us, we're innovating!" is over.

Innovation = throwing tech spaghetti at the wall and seeing what sticks. CES is an exhibit of spaghetti on walls.

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post #17 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by boeyc15 View Post

not feeling it for any of these devices... not sure even iwatch would kindle my interest. IMO not sure what a 'watch' brings to the party except convience.

Consider my vision of an iWatch. This device would offer the time and date, and other common watch face features but also let you know the weather and other smart watch features without having to pull out your phone. It will be tied to your phone in that it's feature set is limited without your iPhone. IOW, you won't, for example, be able to have the iWatch vibrate and show you who is calling if you don't have the BLE pairing on and in close enough proximity.

But those are common uses for smart watches today so what could Apple bring to the party? What I'd like to see is the BLE pairing being done with multiple devices so that I can pair to my iPad, iPhone, and Macs this way, when the iWatch goes out of range of any one of these devices it will auto-lock and when it gets into range it will auto-unlock. On a Mac this would be great for those that want security but hate having to remember to set the lock screen when they get up as well as having to input it every time they come back. On an iPhone and iPad the same thing but you also get the addiiotnal advantage if you're (say) on a subway and your iPhone gets snatched out of your hand while you're using it. Once it's out of range it can auto-lock* which could help protect some of your personal data from being stolen even if the device can't be recovered.

That's even before we get to biometrics in an iWatch. We tend to keep our phones with it quite a bit be we tend to wear watches even longer. I wear my Fitbit Force 24/7 minus when I take a shower (even though it's resistant enough to get wet) which is when I charge it. Apple could use the M7 (or the M8 or M9) to record all sorts of data and potentially more accurately than in the iPhone due to it being in the same location on the body for longer. My Force syncs quite well over BLE so I imagine this isn't an issue for Apple. I'd like to see heart rate. oxygen, and many other biometrics measured and recorded but we may have to wait for the One-A-Day iPill that will give us such detailed info.


* I'd also like for the hard shutdown to force it to reboot with the only way to do only a shutdown requiring your device's passcode.

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post #18 of 23
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Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post

I bet they all keep better time than my Rolex, heck a Timex would! 1biggrin.gif

 

I am thoroughly unimpressed with Rolexes.  I saw a watchmaker swap out various parts (bezels, face, bands) in a matter of minutes.  The whole experience resembled overly expensive Legos.
post #19 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by msuberly View Post


Good job mine was a present from a girl friend 30 years ago then eh? 1smile.gif
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post #20 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by msuberly View Post


Do you think Apple could apply Rolex techniques to an iWatch? Not the different faces as we're surely talking about a small digital display, but the ability to make his and her sizes, have different bands, be of high quality and appeal, and be resistant to water and prolonged usage?

You don't plug a Rolex in for charging or syncing so I'd think Apple would likely use an inductive charger so they could effectively seal the device. Inductive charging is slow and inefficient but a watch battery is so small compared to even a smartphone that I think it's feasible.

So how do you set it up or sync it without a cable? The Apple TV G3 has the ability to be controlled by the iOS Remote app out of the box. Perhaps that was a test for getting an iWatch to do the same.

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post #21 of 23
My 18K Cartier Panther always gets a great table at a restaurant. My Pebble with a yellow band is sufficiently annoying to remind me of client emails. My Cartier Tank Americaine is good for a new client lunch when you can't look like you have more success than they. I am waiting for the Kreyos which may be the one I wear most often. Apple may put them all in the box.
post #22 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by stanhope View Post

My 18K Cartier Panther always gets a great table at a restaurant. My Pebble with a yellow band is sufficiently annoying to remind me of client emails. My Cartier Tank Americaine is good for a new client lunch when you can't look like you have more success than they. I am waiting for the Kreyos which may be the one I wear most often. Apple may put them all in the box.

If you insist on the Apple watch then kindly sent the Cartier to me.
post #23 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post

Good job mine was a present from a girl friend 30 years ago then eh? 1smile.gif

At the very least, your watch has some character. Anymore, Rolex is nothing but an overpriced name.
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