Those are some mighty purdy smartwatches, son.
We think so too. This may be Misfit’s first ever attempt at a smartwatch – until now, it’s been solely in the fitness tracker game – but it’s nailed it, at least on the design front.
The Phase Hybrid (for that is its name) is styled to look like an analogue watch, with no weird “flourishes” (i.e. style concessions) made to accommodate a large touchscreen. Here, notifications are delivered through a clever combination of a tiny colour window, vibrations and the interplay of the watch’s hands, not by a display.
So I can’t run apps on the Phase?
No, but it’ll happily pair with a smartphone and feed you notifications when you receive a text or call, and it’s also able to deliver alerts from certain smartphone apps. Misfit says it can be used to remotely trigger your phone’s camera, control music playback and interact with smart home devices too, but it’s not yet clear what the specific requirements are.
But those things aside, it’s seemingly geared more towards activity tracking - not surprising given Misfit’s history in that sweaty area. It’ll track steps, distance travelled, sleep duration and sleep quality, as well as reminding you to move occasionally. And it'll pass all that data on to your phone for insights and such like.
At least that means I won’t have to recharge it every six hours…
Indeed – Misfit claims it has a six-month battery life. Just like a "proper" analogue watch, really. It also totes 50m of water resistance, a stainless steel and aluminium body and integrated lugs that mean you can replace the standard band with any 20mm field band. So perhaps it should be looked at as an analogue watch first, a smartwatch second. Oh, and an activity tracker third.
Look out for the Misfit Phase Hybrid soon, on sale direct from Misfit’s website and priced from US$175.