Sony pitches analogue watch with limited iPhone integration on its crowdfunding site [Poll]

wena

While some were waiting eagerly for the Apple Watch, and others got assimilated, there are still those who prefer traditional watches. That’s the market Sony hopes to appeal to with a new hybrid watch called Wena (which apparently stands for ‘wear electronics naturally’), which it’s pitching on its Japanese crowdfunding site First Flight.

It’s mostly a traditional analogue watch, but a link to an iOS app gives it limited smartwatch functionality. On the smartwatch side, you get fitness band functionality, and notifications are echoed to the watch in the form of an LED and vibration … 

Author Ad Placeholder
Will only appear on redesign env.

There’s no digital display, though, so you still need to check your phone to find out what the notification was – possibly handy if you frequently miss alerts on your phone in noisy environments, but otherwise likely to be annoying.

Frustratingly, contactless payment is supported, but only the Japanese FeliCa standard, not Apple Pay.

What you will get is battery-life. The watch itself will run for either three years (standard model) or five years (chronograph), while the smart functionality built into the band will last around a week between charges.

If it gets funded, pricing will range from a little under $300 to around $580.

While it’s an interesting idea, I’m not quite sure who it’s aimed at. Gadget lovers will want the full functionality of the Apple Watch, while I’d have thought watch guys would want to wear their own collection rather than a Sony model, but perhaps I’m missing something? Take our poll and let us know.

IDC recently estimated that Apple sold 3.6M Apple Watches in Q2, amounting to 20% of all wearables.

Via TNW

FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links. More.

You’re reading 9to5Mac — experts who break news about Apple and its surrounding ecosystem, day after day. Be sure to check out our homepage for all the latest news, and follow 9to5Mac on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to stay in the loop. Don’t know where to start? Check out our exclusive stories, reviews, how-tos, and subscribe to our YouTube channel

Comments

  1. Company as big as Sony needs crowdfunding? Is this a joke? Despite that, I would never buy these watch.

  2. rogifan - 7 years ago

    Somehow I have a feeling people that wear expensive traditional watches aren’t going to swap them out for these smart devices. I get the sense Apple isn’t targeting that crowd but those who currently don’t wear anything on their wrist. If your wrist is bare obviously you don’t really care about traditional watches from a design standpoint (otherwise you’d be wearing one just for the fashion aspect). So I’m not sure why Android OEMs think the only way to get someone to wear a smart watch is to make it look exactly like a mechanical watch.

    • robinpinto9896 - 7 years ago

      I am totally agree with you Rgifan, that people that wear expensive traditional watches aren’t going to swap them out for these smart devices. And my question is why all these companies has not make it available in indian market, still this time i didn’t see all these smart watches….

      Regard’s
      http://coozy.in

    • Abedoss - 7 years ago

      I think they are following Ive’s words when he said:
      “Switzerland is in trouble”
      So he mislead them.

      • rogifan - 7 years ago

        Except we don’t know if Ive ever said that. It was only a rumor.

      • Abedoss - 7 years ago

        He said it.

  3. Christian Marth - 7 years ago

    This is for the Japanese market which is vastly different to the US or other western Markets, it’s a great device that has the style and elegance that the Japanese consumers expect along with technology that works well in the Japanese ecosystem.

  4. butskristof - 7 years ago

    I think it’s rather expensive for what it actually does? The Martian Notifier e.g. also has a traditional design, but also sports a small LED display for notifications. Bottom line? It costs only 100-130 dollars. I really dig these kinds of designs, but at that price I’m out.

    • rogifan - 7 years ago

      If it doesn’t actually show me the notification on my wrist I see no point to it. At least with Apple Watch or other smart watches you can quickly see the notification and ignore it if it’s not important. With this you still have to pull out your phone to see what it is,

  5. mpias3785 - 7 years ago

    I’m not interested in a fitness watch, but the notifications buzzer isn’t a bad idea particularly if it warns you if the watch is moved a particular distance from the phone (loss prevention) and the watch sets itself using the iPhone’s clock.

    OTOH, the watch is insanely expensive and I’m not willing to spend that much on an Apple Watch so why would I spend that much on some slightly smart analog watch from a company not known for making watches?

  6. gkbrown - 7 years ago

    I think it’s an interesting concept. But Sony should not be attempting to “crowd fund” anything.

  7. Inaba-kun (@Inaba_kun) - 7 years ago

    Well it’s a damn sight better looking than an Apple Watch, but then again, those who actually care about watches as fashion probably own several of different designs already anyway. Watch snobs wouldn’t touch this one either, as Sony have no name in watch making.

    The rest of us will just use our phones and continue to ignore watches, just as we’ve been doing for many years.

  8. arwynnfcffxiv - 7 years ago

    I wonder if you could use the band with your current watches or if it has to be attached to the main face. If they made a smart band for all normal watches they may have something.

  9. charilaosmulder - 7 years ago

    Kind of like the Withings Activité, but way uglier.

Author

Avatar for Ben Lovejoy Ben Lovejoy

Ben Lovejoy is a British technology writer and EU Editor for 9to5Mac. He’s known for his op-eds and diary pieces, exploring his experience of Apple products over time, for a more rounded review. He also writes fiction, with two technothriller novels, a couple of SF shorts and a rom-com!


Ben Lovejoy's favorite gear