After rumors of a Microsoft smartwatch first surfaced back in July, Forbes has reported that the company is indeed getting ready to launch a wearable device within the next few weeks.
If you recall, Tom’s Hardware hinted that the smartwatch would be equipped with 11 sensors and feature a 1.5-inch display that would actually be located inside the user’s wrist, as it possesses a more natural look and feel.
The gadget will be a smartwatch that will “passively track a wearer’s heart rate and work across different mobile platforms,” Forbes writes. Supposedly, the device will also boast a battery life of more than two days of regular use — a frequently cited factor in the consumer purchase decision process.
“Motorola’s [Atmel MXT112S powered] Moto 360 smartwatch also has a continuous heart rate monitor and has been praised for its stylish design, but the battery tends to last for just 24 hours based on various reviews. Some wearables like the Pebble and Jawbone Up24 boast batteries that last for days or even weeks at a time, but that becomes impossible when a device features a color display like the Apple Watch or Gear,” Forbes notes.
The recent Forbes report also emphasized that the device will work across different platforms, which is consistent with CEO Satya Nadella’s attempt to widen the company’s product offerings “across all devices.” This meaning that the new wearable will not only be compatible with Windows Phone devices, but Android and iOS handsets as well. When announced, the gadget will mark the company’s first attempt in the category under Nadella.
It’s no surprise Microsoft is looking towards wearable computing; after all, analysts predict the market to be worth $12.6 billion in 2018, with an anticipated 100 million smartwatches to be in use worldwide by 2019. Furthermore, businesses will look to integrate more than 13 million wearable devices with embedded wireless connectivity into their wellness plans over this time period.
“Microsoft’s legacy in machine learning through Microsoft Research could also point to a future business model for a health-tracking device — that is, if it chooses to exploit its close ties with enterprise customers.”
The Tom’s Hardware report in July added that Microsoft’s smartwatch will have a resemblance to a thinner, flatter version of the Nike Fuelband. We guess we’ll just have to stay tuned until its launch to find out more!