Montblanc e-Strap watchband turns traditional timepieces into smartwatches
Montblac has announced its e-Strap watchband that will cleverly turn traditional timepieces into smartwatches. The wearable technology adds notifications, fitness tracking and touch screen to a regular watch.
In an effort to compete with smartwatches from Apple and Google, fearful of the first industry shake-up in decades as OEMs tries to take a bite out of the market for conventional watches, it is not surprising that traditional watch makers are also turning to experiment with the smartwatch concept in a bid to ensure that they retain timekeeping in the mechanical territory and to avoid becoming irrelevant.
Brought out as part of the Montblanc Timewalker Urban Speed collection, the e-Strap band attaches a 4cm widget to the inside of the watchband, complete with an OLED touch screen and notification system. Made from a material called DLC (diamond like carbon) and coated in steel, it connects to a smartphone app. When connected the device will be capable of handling all your standard notifications, though it does lacks more advanced health-monitoring sensors and only comes with sensors to track movement and sleep.
The e-Strap is compatible with both iOS and Android smartphones. Alerts for phone calls, texts, emails, calendar events, social network interactions and reminders are delivered with a vibrations and its battery is said to offer five days of use with once charge, a huge leap than that of the 1 day life spam of most regular smartwatches.
The band itself is Florentine leather and it is being sold at a luxury price of £250 as an add-on for Montblanc’s 2015 Timewalker Urban Speed watches with prices ranging from around £2,300 to £3,600. It will also be available as a standalone purchase, of course, but stands at a higher price point when compared to Android Wear smartwatches from LG and Motorola. However, being a more subtle alternative to bulky smartwatches, the strap is likely to see some form of success with those who still prefer mechanical watches.