6 smartwatches put digital info on your wrist

For times when it isn't convenient to pull out your smartphone to check email or see who is calling, these smartwatches can help.


Rumors about an Apple iWatch are heating up -- and now Samsung and Google have announced that they are working on their own "smartwatches."

But the truth is that digital watches have been available for years, and more are being developed all the time. If you don’t want to wait, here are six smartwatches (arranged from least to most expensive) that are already available -- or will be soon. All these devices connect to your phone via Bluetooth and offer a variety of alerts and other services. 

Cookoo watch


Described by the vendor as “the wearable extension of your smartphone,” the Cookoo smartwatch has an analog face that displays icons with information from your phone. Currently compatible only with iOS 5 and iOS 6 devices, Cookoo shows you notifications without you having to interact with your phone.

For instance, your phone can send the Cookoo a notification for incoming calls, missed calls, Facebook posts and calendar reminders. While you cannot answer a call or read emails from your watch, you can use a command button to take a picture (great for group shots, Cookoo’s developers say) or tag your location.

Ringing in at $129.99, the Cookoo comes with a soft silicon band and an anti-scratch mineral glass face. 

Pebble watch


The Pebble uses an e-paper interface to offer a 144 x 168 monochrome interface. Compatible with both Android phones (version 2.3 and later) and iPhones (3GS and later), the Pebble sports a shatter- and scratch-resistant lens with anti-glare optical coating.

The watch displays incoming caller ID, email, social media alerts, SMS messages and more. You can disable notifications completely or remove them with a shake of your wrist while notifications are on. Because it uses e-paper, the Pebble gives you a choice of watch faces -- or you can display one of several apps.

Pebble watches will start shipping during April and May, but you can pre-order one now for $150.

Sony SmartWatch


If you are within 32 feet of your Android phone, the Sony SmartWatch will remain connected to it. Touted by Sony as a mini version of your phone, the SmartWatch has a multi-touch color OLED display that offers three levels of information. You can move between levels by tapping or swiping. When you receive a call, text or other notification, just tap the screen to read the details.

The watch, which can detach from the wristband, is 1.4 x 1.4 x 0.3 in. and weighs 0.55 oz. According to Sony, the SmartWatch, which costs $129.99, will last for 3-4 days of typical usage on a single charge (you can recharge it via the included USB cable). 


MetaWatch Watches

MetaWatch offers several different styles of watches, which range in price from $179 - $299. All are compatible with both Android (version 2.3 and later) and iOS 6; both operating systems require the download of the MetaWatch Manager Application.

MetaWatch devices include caller ID notification, SMS notification, audio controls and weather, stock and calendar widgets. According to the company, upcoming features include email notification, Facebook and Twitter notification, and alarms. All models are water resistant; the 96 x 96 reflective mirror displays use a polymer network LCD technology. Battery life for typical use is 5-7 days. 

Martian watches

Martian Voice Command Watches

Martian watches come in three Earthbound styles that range in price from $249 - $299. The top half of each display is an analog watch; the lower half uses a 96 x 16 OLED display to show incoming calls, text messages, emails and social media alerts.

Based on which device you're using (Android, iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch), Martian watches can offer text alerts and even read you your messages (which can come in handy when you are driving). If your phone has voice command functions you can use those functions to search the Web, control your music app and set reminders for yourself.

Martian watches can be pre-ordered; they are expected to start shipping in April or May. 

I\'m Watch

I'm Watch

The I’m Watch gives you information about calls, emails, texts and social media notifications via its 1.54-in. color TFT display -- you can even check out Instagram right on your wrist.  It connects to your Android or iOS phone via Bluetooth and is customizable with its own apps, including games, music and office apps; the I’m Watch is also controllable remotely using its I’m Cloud service.

It comes in three collections with wristbands ranging from aluminum ($349) to titanium ($1,199 - $1,349) to jeweled (the white gold with diamonds will cost you $19,990).

Equipped with its own speakers, the I’m Watch should last about five hours on a charge or will last on standby for up to 48 hours when not connected to Bluetooth.

Copyright © 2013 IDG Communications, Inc.

Related Slideshows