The Geak Watch 2 may be the answer to all your prayers for an attractive, long-lasting smartwatch. Shanda, one of China’s leading online gaming and ebook companies is the mastermind behind the project, which launched on crowd-funding site Pozible during the last week of October.
Updated on 12-08-2014 by Malarie Gokey: Added news that the Geak Watch 2 is the most-funded campaign on Pozible.
The smartwatch promises up to 7 days of battery life, boasts two different screens, and aims to do everything from track your heart rate to control your TV. The Geak Watch 2 makes many bold claims, and if the watch works as advertised, it could be the ultimate smartwatch. It seems like many people from around the world agree that this device has potential, as the Geak Watch 2 became the most-funded Pozible campaign ever. The device surpassed $620,000 and 1,200 backers with three days left in its campaign. Backers from the UK, US, Australia, Singapore, and many other countries contributed to the Chinese project.
“It’s been so exciting to see pledges coming in not only from China, but from supporters all over the world,” Peng Xu, the CEO of Geak Watch said in a statement. “We can’t wait to get the units ready and shipped to GEAK fans everywhere.”
Related: Read our LG G Watch R review
The first thing you’ll notice about the Geak Watch 2 is its perfectly round face, 24mm genuine leather strap, and metal casing. Like the LG G Watch R, the Geak Watch 2 features a perfectly round 1.36-inch screen with a 320 x 320 pixel resolution, as well as a pixel density of 254 pixels-per-inch (ppi). The main difference here is the Geak Watch 2’s screen is transflective, meaning that it transitions from full-color LCD to E-Ink screen when you’re not using it, or you encounter lighting conditions that would render the LCD screen unreadable. The screen itself is made from Dragontail Glass from Japan, which Shanda says protects against scratches and hard impacts. It’s also nano-coated to limit fingerprint marks and glare.
As such, Shanda says the screen is not only durable and readable in any light, but also a great preserver of energy. It’s a pretty tall order for a smartwatch display, but if the Geak watch 2 can pul it off, it will solve one of the main problems that keep smartwatch manufacturers up late at night. So far, manufacturers have had to choose between a colorful, HD screen that’s impossible to see in full sunlight — not to mention a huge vampire that sucks battery life, or a black and white E-Ink screen that’s boring to look at, but easy to read and long-lasting.
Thanks to the reactive display and other features that aim to preserve battery life, the Geak Watch 2 can supposedly last up to 7 days on one charge. At the very worst, Shanda says it will last through three to four days of use. Seeing as most smartwatches last a day at best, even three days would be a big improvement. The Geak Watch 2 charges with a small, magnetic cradle.
Another odd and interesting thing about the Geak Watch 2 is that it runs a custom version of Android 4.3 instead of Android Wear or some other homegrown OS. The watch can work without your smartphone, but supports iOS and Android 4.4 devices. If you want to connect the Geak watch 2 to your phone or another device, you can set up the connection via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi . This supposedly allows you to use the Geak Watch 2 as a remote control for your TV, stereos, and other smart appliances that have Wi-Fi or Bluetooth onboard. The Geak Watch 2 also performs standard tasks like push notifications for calls, texts, emails, etc. and tracks your heart rate, counts steps, and other fitness metrics.
Of course, The Geak Watch 2 is just a crowdfunding project right now, so you’ll have to wait and see if Shanda can deliver on all its promises. Currently, the watch is in trial production and testing, but it should ship in January 2015, according to the company’s time table. You can pre-order one on the crowd-funding page for $360.