With the advent of social media, and the ensuing technological craze that came with it, many companies have looked at this newly developing market with thoughts toward innovating and improving it. Many consumers already have smartphones, tablets, laptops, so what’s left? According to French company VEA Digital, the answer is the VEA Buddy smartwatch.
The smartwatch is a new idea based on an already existent template. Essentially, the device keeps time and attaches to the wrist just as a normal watch would, while also providing the user with updates to social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, or Google+. In addition, these watches can coordinate with iPhones and tablets to sync programs, data, and notifications amongst all three appliances.
The Dallas-based company MetaWatch has been developing its smartwatch with the direct aim of increasing user interactivity while also making it as developer friendly as possible. With people constantly checking their phones for notifications outside of simple phone calls, MetaWatch believes that it would be simpler if people could just check their watch for any updates they might have been otherwise unaware of. Not sure if you received that important text message yet? Glance at your smartwatch to find out. Did someone upload that funny video you’ve been waiting all day to see? Your smartwatch will let you know as soon as they do.
Pebble, like MetaWatch and VEA Buddy, is using crowd-sourced funding to make its dream product a reality. Currently, their success can be measured by the quarter of a million smartwatches they’ve sold thus far. As impressive as that number is, is there any chance of expanding this market to an even larger population? Pebble has been making attempts to break into the larger scene of consumer awareness with their Kickstarter campaign, and has been remarkable successful at doing just that. Their product , similar to the MetaWatch, places greater emphasis on customization and built-in applications for daily use. Following Apple’s lead, Pebble’s smartwatch is designed to be as fashionably minimalistic as possible. Unlike MetaWatch, which focuses on enticing developers to work with their product, Pebble has been designing apps themselves. They have applications for a wide range of different jobs, from cyclists using their watch to keep track of important speed and distance statistics to drivers using their watch as a small GPS system.
Not content to be left out by MetaWatch and Pebble, sports watch maker VEA Digital has been eager to get into the smartwatch market with its own product. While the VEA Buddy smartwatch is still in the crowdfunding phase on Indiegogo, they have released detailed plans on the functionality of their new wearable computing device. To VEA, the constant updating and evolution of smartphones has led to a need for smaller devices that are easier to access. Designed under the moniker of the Buddy smartwatch, this watch acts as a silent notifier of any important updates received directly from your smartphone and tablet.
This high-tech gadget is built with eight gigabytes of memory and Bluetooth functionality. In addition, it has a USB port and battery life that can last anywhere from ten days to two full weeks. Best of all, and one of VEA Buddy’s biggest selling points, their product is compatible with both iOS based Apple iPhones and Android OS devices. This universal functionality ensures that even its least technologically savvy customers can trust that they’ll get the most out of their product.
The VEA Buddy smartwatch is not without its concerns though. As of this writing, it has only managed to achieve roughly seventy thousand of its projected three hundred thousand dollar investment goal. While there is still a little over twenty days left in the crowd-sourced funded project, it’s not entirely clear if there is enough demand or awareness for such a product or if the emerging smartwatch market is simply saturated already. Despite these setbacks, the company has promised that it will put their smartwatch into production regardless of the cost.
Even if the evidence doesn’t exactly present itself on crowd-funded websites, VEA believes there are plenty of potential customers out there that will purchase and benefit from a smartwatch. They are not alone either; many companies have begun to pop up in pursuit of capitalizing on this newly arisen market for watches that can seamlessly merge with phones and tablets. However, how many of these upstart companies can survive in a highly competitive and constantly evolving technological marketplace remains to be seen.
VEA Buddy Smartwatch: [Company Website]
Jon is the Editor-In-Chief at Wear Guide and writes about wearable technology On Your Arm. Jon has a M.S. in Computer Science, won several intercollegiate events as a member of the UCLA Cycling Team, and is currently active on the USA Triathlon circuit which provides him the opportunity to field-test wearables under grueling conditions. Jon also writes for our sister publication Electric.guide.
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