If you haven’t figured it out yet, I am a sucker for gadgets. Doesn’t matter if it’s an AR Drone, Android powered car stereo, or in this case a smart watch.
I first heard about the WIMM One last year, shortly after the announcement of the then vaporware “I’m Watch” (although, as of the time I’m writing this I don’t know a single person who has received their pre-order unit…), and I thought it looked like a great product, despite the fact that the fit and finish of the I’m Watch looked nicer. Plus, you could actually order one! And at $199 (available now through Amazon) how could you pass up living in the future?
I’d like to note that I haven’t worn a watch in at least three years, since I always have my cell phone on me. This little gadget changed that though, now I don’t leave home without it.
Apps. You can’t bill this as the WIMM’s most compelling feature, since their “Mirco App Store” how has about 30 apps in it. However, I’m still counting it as a plus, since this is after all a developer preview that’s designed to inspire people to build apps for it. And also, my old Casio watch didn’t have any “apps”.
Near silent OTA updates. I’d had my watch for about a week when I saw the folks at WIMM tweet about a new firmware, I went to check for the update on my watch and it had already downloaded and installed. Never skipped a beat.
LCD. The screen on this unit is surprisingly easy to read even with the backlight off (in most conditions), and in direct sunlight it (backlight on) it still worked well.
Call/text notifications. The best thing about this unit is the Bluetooth pairing to your smart phone. With an iPhone, currently you only get call notifications, but it displays the caller ID and optionally vibrates, beeps, or both to alert you of a call. With the companion app for Android, you can not only get call notifications, but read your text messages as well.
Calendar app. Using the developer website, you can add either an Exchange Calendar, or Google Calendar to your watch. Notifications of upcoming events will then popup on your watch, also depending on which watch face you use, you can preview upcoming events without having to load the calendar app.
Weather app. I know, I know, it’s just a weather app. But it actually displays the current temp on the app icon, something that Apple has yet to grace us iPhone users with.
The touchscreen takes a bit of getting used to, mostly because of lag issues. Often the WIMM One doesn’t register my initial swipe, or it misinterprets a single tap for a double tap. This isn’t an iPhone quality touch experience by any means, but the performance has been optimized slightly through software updates, so I’m holding out hope that the final release will work better.
Battery life. There are days where I get a solid twenty hours of battery life, but the more regular occurrence is I get closer to eight hours. WIMM does say that if you experience poor battery life, you should disable third party apps and then reenable them one by one until you pinpoint which app is killing your battery. Honestly though, 8hrs gets me through the work day at least.
Size. It’s a bit chunky, and took some getting used to for my tiny nerd wrists.
Disabled GPS chip. Apparently the unit ships with a GPS chip, but it’s currently disabled due to “performance issues”.
Device management. This isn’t that big of an issue, especially once you get the device setup to your liking. Currently there are certain settings that can only be configured through their website and then have to be synced back down to the watch.
It’s a sweet, albeit nerdy accessory. Sure both you and I could live without this device, but if you’re half as gadget obsessed as I am you’ll pick one of these up.