The watch is evolving faster than it ever has, but that isn’t stopping many from holding on to the watch styles of old. For example, many prefer to use mechanical-style watch faces on their smartwatches. Ressence, a luxury watchmaker from Belgium, has come up with a concept design for a smart mechanical watch — or a watch that blends the style of the mechanical watch with the mobile connectivity of a smartwatch.
The device is called the Type 2 e-Crown, and it was designed with the help of Nest co-founder Tony Fadell. While it does offer some smart connectivity, it’s probably aimed more at mechanical watch lovers who like the idea of a little extra connectivity, rather than those looking for a smartwatch to deliver notifications and access to a digital assistant.
But what’s smart about it? Well, it connects to your phone via Bluetooth, after which it’ll adjust the time automatically depending on the time on your phone. It adjusts for daylight savings automatically and you can switch between two time zones without having to adjust. If it runs out of power, you don’t have to adjust it manually once it’s charged up again — just tap on the watch face and it will connect and adjust the time.
Those that do like setting the time manually don’t need to worry. The watch offers three modes — one fully automatic, one semi-automatic, in which you can adjust the time manually and it will adjust to the minute, and one fully manual mode. Though, if you’re going for the fully manual mode maybe there’s not much point in buying this device in the first place.
There is another reason you might not want to buy the Ressence Type 2 e-Crown — it’s a concept and not yet available, though a version of Type 2 will reportedly be available later in 2018. According to The Verge, Ressence’s watches go for between $15,000 and $35,000.
If you are looking for a hybrid watch, however, there are a few options out there. The Garmin Vivomove HR, for example, looks like a standard mechanical watch but can also track activity, show notifications, detect heart rate, and more. The likes of Skagen, Kronaby, and even Nokia also offer their own hybrid watches with mechanical designs and smart features.