Product Design: Smartwatch, the concept:
The Smartwatches are out here already, enjoying their own boom! They are the new phenomenon in the mobile tech: the new bet of leading manufacturers and others that are not so.
Our design concept for a Smartwatch is a result of a market study, so we have been driven by what we believe are the features that most of the existing devices lack. Aiming for an innovative product, we list the overall shared features of the current Smartwatches that in our opinion, attempt with the quality and public acceptance of the product.
- Most of them are small-scale smartphones. That, we believe, could dissuade potential users for wearing a product that diminishes the appeal and the aesthetic sign that would represent a watch in the wrist.
- In those cases in which the product results from two separated modules, bracelet and hardware, the physical union between them is far from being clean or harmonic. A better solution would be a device that provides an easy and functional “all in 1” configuration, so that it looks as one single piece. The set-reset of the modules should be a secure and easy process for the user.
- In the current versions of Smartwatches, the prime concept of the product has been distorted. A watch would make users to think they are wearing one, despite how many other new functions it brings out. It does not mean we should not be innovative, but we want to base the innovations taking advantage of the rooted experience that users have of what a watch is. There are certainly many users wanting a watch and not a phone in their wrists. Perhaps we are still not ready to be a “Dick Tracy”…or at least not all of us.
- The last point explains that the user interphase is poorly intuitive for a watch.
To correct the above mentioned “fails” in Smartwatches design, we propose a more user friendly product that will share more features with its ancestor: The Watch.
Our concept embraces the traditional form of a wrist watch. We choose a circular shape despite the multiple other shapes due to the appeal that a circle has as a form. In addition, it is perhaps the oldest and best known shape for watches.
The separation of the product in two modules is a great idea. Our proposal is to have a rigid silicon bracelet where we could set the hardware in and out at desire. A magnet in the reverse part of the machine will keep it bound to the silicon bracelet which in turns will have a metal disc for this function. The hardware will be additionally “anchored” by a gasket formed by the the silicon bracelet itself. This solution, or a similar one, would allow for bracelet change in colors, sizes, patterns etc. The magnet in the hardware case would allow it to be stick to metal surfaces like the fridge or laptop cases. Despite this initial idea, we have to acknowledge that a better solution can be possible but we lack the specific expertise for it.
In concordance with our “more-like-a-watch” concept for a smartwatch, our device will not have the option to visualize or edit text messages, emails, twits, or facebook updates. We really believe in a product which will be smart without doing these functions. Instead, these tasks are more comfortable to do in the Smartphone. We however would incorporate functions like notifications for missed calls, received emails, weather report and other notifications from the phone synchronized to the watch.
We propose an easy and comfortable interphase, gesture-based, with a great simplicity in the contents to show. We will provide the option to modify the styles of the app interphase referred to the app in the phone which can ultimately be combined with the colors of the bracelet.
We propose our watch to have the a start bottom, one micro USB port for charging and a touch screen with 160px and 1.18 inches. The OS will be Android.