The smartwatch was supposed to be the next big thing. All the major smartphone companies plus even quite a few non-tech related companies jumped on the bandwagon to release one. However, even the most ardent smartwatch supporter has to admit that the smartwatch didn’t really take off as expected. Some say that the smartwatch isn’t doing anything that a smartphone doesn’t. Others say that the short battery life is a huge no-no. No matter what, it has not stopped companies from trying to come up with the perfect smartwatch. The Skagen Connected may be the smartwatch that all of us have been waiting for.
The first thing that struck us when we first saw the Skagen Connected was that it didn’t look like a smartwatch. There is no LED display or a touchscreen anywhere in sight. There isn’t even any LED lights on the watch. It looked just like any analog dress watch with mechanical dials. It has no crown but on the right side of the case there are 3 buttons. It is a very attractive looking watch though. One that will not look out of place at a fancy dinner or at a formal event.
The Skagen Connected is an analog hybrid smartwatch. While it tells time using traditional watch hands, it does have some hidden smartwatch features. First of all, it connects to an app on your smartphone (it supports both Android and iOS) via low energy Bluetooth. Through this Bluetooth connection, the watch can synchronize the time with your phone making it probably one of the most accurate analog watches out there. You no longer have to adjust the time. It will even adjust the time automatically when you change time zones. Neat!
Depending on the model, there may be an additional subdial. The subdial is used for notifications from your phone plus keeping track of your activity progress. There are 4 segments on the left half of the subdial, each corresponding to an app on your phone. You can customize each of the 4 apps on your phone. For example, you can link your email, text messages, WhatsApp and Facebook and each time you get a notification, the dial will indicate the segment that is linked to the app together with a gentle vibration.
Yes, this does mean that you have to remember which app is linked to which segment but with just 4 apps, it isn’t a difficult task. The right half of the subdial lets you see how far you away you are from achieving your daily activity goal. No fancy display or graphics but it works. For the models without a subdial, the app segments and activity tracking is on the main dial instead.
Other smart features of the phone including controlling music playback on your phone, activating the camera shutter remotely for selfies, sleep tracker and keeping a secondary time zone. The last one is pretty cool as the watch hands swing around instantly to your secondary time zone with the tap of a button and swing back again with a second tap.
The Skagen Connected is definitely not for those who install all kinds of apps on their smartwatches or switch the watch face every other day. It is primarily an elegant timepiece that also happens to have a few smart features. To be honest, we honestly believe that the included features are the most important and the most often used ones on a smartwatch.
And we haven’t yet talk about what we feel is the Skagen Connected’s best feature, its battery life. With smartwatches like the Apple Watch and Android Wear, you can consider yourself lucky if the battery lasts the whole day. The Skagen Connected on the other hand uses a standard watch battery that is rated to last 4 to 6 months. Actual battery life will of course depend on how often you receive notifications on a daily basis but any smartwatch that lasts more than a week gets our instant seal of approval.
The Skagen Connected is not a smartwatch for everyone but we think that it sits nicely between a non-smartwatch and a full blown smartwatch. The current smartwatches may be a little too ahead of their time by trying to do too much while at the same time being hindered by battery technology that struggles to keep up. The months long battery life more than makes up for the greatly reduced set of features and will be very attractive to many people.
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