In the last few months I have been obsessed with smartwatches which are the latest gadget hype. These watches are intended to be a remote extension of your phone, cramped with a lot of smart functionality and average price tag of about $200. For those of you old enough to know, these are ‘Dick Tracy’ watches.
(Dick Tracy is a comic strip featuring Dick Tracy, a square-jawed, hard-hitting, fast-shooting, yellow suit wearing, and intelligent police detective who had a 2-way wrist-radio. The strip made its debut on October 4, 1931 and continued until 1977. For reference, have a look at the picture posted here)
When I discovered the X-Boss watch last month, it caught my attention with some of the “smart” functionality it had to offer and universal bluetooth compatibility for pairing up with any android or iOS phone.
This is not a smartwatch that will let you receive email and text notifications (which is why it doesn’t cost $200). Just like we have smartphones and feature-phones, I would call this digital watch a “feature-smart” watch. Weighing only 60g this watch will not weight your wrist down, and although bulky in appearance – it felt surprisingly comfortable even on my small wrist.
The display is about 1.75″ across with big letters/numbers and it’s backlit with a blue light when you press any button or receive a call. There are no nested menus, everything controlled with 4 external large buttons.
Charging of the watch is done through micro-usb port, usb cable included. According to the instructions which come with a watch, and I must say those are very clear and detailed instructions in english. The battery has 250 mAh capacity with a full charge that will provide about 2-3 hr of music playback and 6 hr of talk time, with 80hr of standby.
I’m not really sure how standby time was calculated, because with bluetooth disabled, using it just as a regular watch I had it on (after a full charge) for almost 3 days and the battery was still indicating full charge. It was simple to pair it with my iPhone and worked like a charm.
For a feature-watch, it actually packs some interesting functionality. First of all, its a regular digital watch displaying time/year/month/date in an easy to read font. You also have an alarm clock, and built-in is Bluetooth 2.1 support with A2DP, AVRCP, HFP, and HSP protocols. Basically, you can easily pair it up with your smartphone device and it will stay connected within a range of about 30+ feet.
Just like any wireless bluetooth speaker, once enabled/paired up – it will play music through the watch’s built-in speaker. This watch has a mic that enables you to pickup a phone call right from the watch!!! Yes, your Dick Tracy watch dream can come true. The phone conversation using this watch was not bad at all, and my wife said she was able to hear me loud and clear.
Some additional features of the watch includes the ability to see the Caller ID of an incoming call and being able to answer the call right from your watch. Furthermore, you can activate Voice Dialling right from the watch. Simply press one of the designated function buttons and say the name of someone from your contact list to dial their number. I just pressed a button, spoke ‘Dial Home’, and my wife answered the phone at home. Voice dialling worked as advertised! You can also re-dial the last number, and switch between calls as part of call-waiting.
Overall, this is one cool gadget! It’s not your typical smart watch with email/txt notification functionality and some people will find it too big for their taste. BUT for the fraction of the price of a smart watch, it still packs some great features. You can definitely find a lot of uses for this watch when hiking/riding a bike, or to using it in your car as a hands-free device as you can leave your phone in your pocket or purse.
Amazon is selling these watches for $65 – $70, but we will have them on our own Media-X store shortly for under $40 !!